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Amanda Rosewater is the idealistic Mayor of Defiance who is committed to maintaining peace in a deadly new world. Every day, she uses her political wits to give this struggling town a chance for survival.


Early Life[]

Born in New York in 2011,[1] Amanda lived a relatively ordinary life as a child despite the Votan arrival when she was just two years old. She has one younger sister named Kenya. Because Kenya is several years younger than Amanda and was born into a post Votan world, Amanda protected Kenya from the physical and emotional harm of growing up in a tumultuous, war torn society.

In her youth, Amanda was a fan of the movie Twilight and had poster on her bedroom wall. Robert Pattinson became an even larger celebrity after the movie The Bravery Nine was released. The movie, based on a story of human astronauts, inspired Amanda to want to become an astronaut herself.

As society grew more dangerous, Amanda would help Kenya build forts out of oil drums, and they would fall asleep listening to the sound of gunfire. This angered their mother, but the sisters didn't mind because they always had each other. Amanda helped provide a sense of normalcy for Kenya.

During the Pale Wars[]

The war with the Votans began in 2023, forcing Amanda and her mother, dirty and ragged, to scavenge for survival. They even scavenged off the bodies of the dead while the war raged around them. Although they were scavenging for anything they could find, Amanda's mother did not consider them to be scavengers. Amanda saw the hypocrisy in this idea, but her mother saw them as different because they were just trying to put food on the table. Although it could logically be argued that other scavengers were in the same position, this justification likely helped Amanda's mother.

During the battle of Manhattan in 2025, the Votanis Collective army reached Houston Street, forcing them to abandon a scavenging attempt and flee for safety. Kenya was playing hopscotch some distance away, and Amanda's terrified mother did not believe they could reach her in time, so she tried to get Amanda to abandon her little sister. Amanda adamantly refused to abandon Kenya, so her mother left with the message that they could find her later at the river.

They never saw their mother again, and Amanda presumed she died in the invasion. It is unclear how and when their father died, but it also occurred during the Pale Wars.[2]

To spare Kenya the pain of knowing her mother wanted to abandon her, Amanda told Kenya that their mother died bravely. Amanda then shouldered the great responsibility of serving as a stand-in parent for her sister, who was only eight years old at the time.

During the final scavenge with her mother, Amanda found a necklace on a dead soldier. She made up a story about how the necklace represented St. Finnegan, patron Saint of lost children. Although it was made up, this story comforted Kenya, and she kept the necklace for the rest of her life.

Although the lie about the necklace served as a great comfort to Kenya, Amanda's lie about their mother's death caused tension between the sisters. Amanda saved Kenya from the pain of knowing that their mother wanted to abandon her, but it caused Kenya to act out against Amanda. While Amanda saw herself as a mother to Kenya, she didn't feel the same way. Kenya was rebellious and believed she raised herself after their mother's death.

After the attack on Manhattan, Amanda and Kenya left New York.

After the Pale Wars[]

The Wars ended in 2032 when Amanda was 21 years old. She and Kenya then returned to New York where she joined the Earth Republic and rose to be an assistant at Earth Repubic Head Quarters. At the time, Amanda was idealistic and wanted to change the world for the better, into a place where humans and Votans could live in harmony. Later, Amanda would describe herself and Connor Lang, who had joined the E-rep for similar reasons, as "young and stupid" for believing in the Earth Republic. They wanted to "Help pick the world up again, brush off the rubble, and find a way for all of us, Votan and Human, to coexist."

Amanda and Connor began a relationship around 2034 and were together for three years before she was raped and impregnated by a masked figure, who was later revealed to be Niles Pottinger. Amanda did not tell anyone about the rape because she believed looking weak would ruin her career. Her life went back to normal until she missed her period. She let Connor believe that the baby was his, but felt disgusted by "that thing" that was growing inside of her, so she had an abortion. She did not tell Connor about the abortion, but after learning of it, he believed that Amanda was spooked by the idea of bringing a child into the new world. This lead to the end of their relationship.

In addition to the destruction of her relationship with Connor, Amanda had become disillusioned with the dictatorial, human-controlled Earth Republic, which she refers to as the "Evil Empire". So, when she heard of the independent town where humans and Votans were attempting to coexist under self-rule, she and Kenya set off towards the newly established town Defiance.

Starting Over[]

While Kenya and Amanda were traveling west, Kenya would get terrible night terrors where she'd flail in her sleep while screaming. Sometimes she'd even wander off. One night, Amanda found her asleep in a field of Necronies, a flesh eating flower. Luckily, they only bloom in sunlight, and Amanda got her out before she was hurt. Kenya was ok, but the incident left emotional scars on Amanda. Despite how terrifying it was to nearly lose her sister, she allowed herself 20 minutes to cry before gathering herself and continuing the journey.

Kenya also worked as a reindeer to earn travelling money. This was the nickname given to those who slept with people on military bases in exchange for money. This career choice upset Amanda who always wanted "better" for her sister. Although Kenya did this job primarily because she enjoyed expressing her sexuality freely and getting paid for it, she also enjoyed that it angered her sister.[3] Although Kenya refused to acknowledge that Amanda was a motherly figure in her life, she certainly rebelled against her like a child would rebel against a parent.

Amanda and Kenya arrived in Defiance around 2037, and Amanda accepted a job cleaning the offices in the Darby Building, the town's central hub where things like the mayor's office are located. Meanwhile, Kenya took a job as a waitress in the NeedWant. Despite these humble beginnings, Amanda impressed then-mayor Nicolette Riordon with her diligence to her work, and Nicky made Amanda her assistant.

Rafe McCawley was the first friend Amanda made after moving to Defiance, and she babysat his daughter, Christie Tarr. She also became close with Ben Daris who claimed to know her better than anyone else.

Amanda served as Nicky's assistant until Mayor Nicky's retirement in 2046, citing a respiratory ailment. Amanda was then appointed Acting Mayor until the next election could be held.

Season One[]

The New Mayor[]

Amanda has only been acting mayor for three weeks when, on Armistice Day, she dedicates a statue to the Defiant Few, the soldiers whose actions led to the end of the Pale Wars. Amanda gives a speech to the town but feels insecure about her ability to take over for the highly popular Mayor Nicky. Still, she takes on the challenge despite her insecurities.

When ark hunter Joshua Nolan (one of the Defiant Few who the statue honors) and his adopted daughter, Irisa, arrive in town, Amanda wants them to leave town to avoid trouble with the spirit riders. However, when Lawkeeper Garret Clancy is killed, Nolan persuades Amanda to let him use his tracking skills to help solve Luke McCawley's murder. During the investigation, Nolan discovers that Amanda's assistant, Ben, is both the killer and also involved in a plot to attack Defiance with the Volge army.

With news that the town is in grave danger, Amanda overcomes her initial insecurities to give an inspiring speech that rouses people to defend the town, including Joshua Nolan, who goes against his daughter's advice. Irisa wants to flee, but Nolan decides to use their terrosphere to save the town. Amanda also fights bravely alongside her people and is wounded in the fight. Although they defeat the Volge, Amanda is heart-broken to learn that 41 people died. With the knowledge that someone just tried to wipe Defiance off the map, Amada offers the job of lawkeeper to Nolan for all his help. When he tells her he's not cut out to be a lawkeeper, she tells him that he's all she has.

Humans & Votans[]

With Amanda's arm still in a sling from her injury, Deputy Tommy Lasalle brings Amanda to Elah Bandik's cleansing ceremony. Although she is appalled that this man is being tortured to death for the crime of cowardice, she decides not to interfere with the customs of the Castithans. She explains to Nolan that the town once took similar action Irathients customs which led to a tragic uprising. Nolan argues that it isn't right, but Amanda insists it's necessary. However, she later tells Nicky that she regrets this is how things have to be. Irisa and Tommy disagree with Amanda's orders not to interfere with the ritual and take it upon themselves to free Elah. When they are caught, Amanda steps forward to say that they did it on her orders and that the town charter gives her the right to pardon him. She defiantly tells Datak Tarr that he must kill her if he doesn't choose to accept it. Amanda's willingness to stand up for what's right impresses Irisa, who had been skeptical of Defiance since she first arrived.

Amanda continues to negotiate the complicated relationships between Humans and Votans when she tries to promote peaceful relations between the Town of Defiance and Sukar and the Spirit Riders. She wants them to stop provoking people and try to assimilate. She is grateful for their help against the Volge and says that, as long as she is mayor, they will be welcome in Defiance. However, he refers to Defiance as being soaked with Irathient blood and believes that the town will turn against them again eventually.

After learning that criminals stole the land in the West Valley from the Irathients and sold it to Rafe McCawley, Amanda presides over a ceremony that legally returns the land to the Irathients who will lease it to Rafe. She describes it as righting an old wrong while upholding the values they have come to live by.

Kenya is Kidnapped & The Truth Comes Out[]

At a town council meeting, Amanda clashes with Rafe McCawley. She refuses to take a loan from the Earth republic to fund a high speed railroad into town, believing that once the E-Rep gets their foot in the door, they will never leave. Rafe speaks down to Amanda, telling her she's too new on the job to understand. The town council continues to speak over Amanda until Datak Tarr barges in, complaining that Nolan intercepted a delivery of vo-tech rifles from the Votanis Collective. Amanda then realizes that the town council went behind her back, using Datak Tarr as an intermediary to get weapons from gun smugglers in the VC, but the deal is off because, like Amanda, Nolan didn't know about this deal and confiscated illegal weaponry from Datak. Even though Amanda is the mayor and the highest authority in town, Rafe tells her that "the operation is need-to-know, and quite frankly, you didn't."

To make an already bad day worse, as Amanda leaves her office, she runs into a woman who calls Kenya a pig and a slut for sleeping with her husband. Amanda slaps the woman, but when she arrives at the NeedWant to find Nolan had also been sleeping with Kenya, she's shocked and struggles to hide how much this upsets her. Amanda tells Nolan that he should have told her he planned to stop Datak Tarr, but Nolan thinks she should have told him about the town's deal with Datak. Of course, Amanda is only pretending to have known about the town's dealings with Datak Tarr. Nolan tells her there are far safer ways to build an armory than working with the VC, but Kenya arrives and gets into an altercation with her sister.

Kenya follows Amanda out of her room, asking why she's so upset. Amanda doesn't understand why Kenya will sleep with married men, but Kenya sees it as part of her job. Amanda always wanted better for Kenya and still struggles with the fact that she's a prostitute, but Kenya is tired of hearing the same old argument. Kenya hurts Amanda by saying that after their mother died, Amanda didn't raise her. Kenya raised herself.

Later, Kenya gets kidnapped, leaving Amanda and Nolan to search for her. A drug dealer is using Kenya to create Adreno, a dangerous drug developed by the EMC that Amanda hasn't heard of yet but will become very familiar with in the future. Nolan and Amanda are forced to go to Datak for help because his Bioman was involved in Kenya's disappearance, but Datak has no desire to work with them. He and Nolan fight, but Amanda tries to reason with him. She fails, but his wife, Stahma, blackmails Amanda into giving Datak a seat on the town council in exchange for help saving Kenya's life. With Datak on the council, it is stacked even higher against Amanda.

When Kenya discovers that Amanda lied about the story behind the necklace their mother gave her as a small child, she goes to Amanda looking for answers. Amanda finally tells Kenya that their mother abandoned them, and she doesn't know how she died. Kenya asks Amanda why she never used this to shut Kenya down when she was giving her shit, and Amanda says, "because you're my sister."

Old Friends from the Earth Republic[]

The town had been saving money to fund a railroad into Defiance, so Nolan and Amanda board a transport vehicle with the funds to finalize the deal. Also on the vehicle is Olfin Tennety, Amanda's rival who she has known since she worked at the Earth Republic headquarters. Olfin continues to use Amanda's humble origins to demean her and attempt to get under her skin. Through an elaborate scheme that Nolan and Amanda manage to stop, they learn that Olfin had planned to steal the money from Defiance, which would force Defiance to borrow from the Earth Republic, bringing them one step closer to controlling Defiance. Nolan and Amanda go to the NeedWant to celebrate their victory with flirtatious smiles and a bottle of scotch, but Olfin Tennetty is now on the warpath. She wants to know everything she can about Amanda.

Just as Nolan and Amanda's relationship begins developing, Amanda's ex, Connor Lang, travels to Defiance. First, he comes searching for Pol Madis. He's there to play to good cop before the E-Rep sends in the big guns to force Amanda's to cooperate with them. Amanda remains defiant and believes justice should be served in Defiance, not at the hands of the Earth Republic. Eddie Braddock confesses to Pol Madis' murder, and Amanda is saved from the Earth Republic for the moment. Then, Connor returns under the pretense of finding Eddie Braddock after he blew a hole in the transport and escaped. Although this is technically true, Amanda immediately knows that he has ulterior motives.

Connor reveals that he wants Amanda to take the job of Territorial Governor under the Earth Republic where she would be in charge of Defiance and similar towns in the area, but Amanda is uninterested in the offer. As mayor of Defiance, Amanda has exactly what she and Connor had wanted when they were young - a way for humans and Votans to co-exist without the "evil empire" as she calls the Earth Republic.

When she continues to refuse the offer, Connor tells her that the Earth Republic is going to take Defiance whether she likes it or not, even if they have to remove Amanda from office. He warns her that "Earth Republic takes what it wants and it doesn't care who it hurts." Olfin Tennety is running the operation to take over Defiance. She's convinced her boss that Amanda is the problem, and without Amanda, Defiance would welcome the Earth Republic with open arms. Amanda tells him this isn't true, but there's only one way for the Earth Republic to find out. Remove Amanda.

An Astronaut from 2013?[]

After Nolan and Tommy find an astronaut claiming to be from 2013 in the wreckage of a Votan ark, they bring him to Doc Yewll where Amanda struggles to contain how starstruck she is by him. Nolan pulls her aside and they start to come up with theories for how he could still be alive. Nolan speculates that the Votans abducted him and scuttled the space station to cover their tracks. Nolan guesses that despite their initial claims of arriving in peace back in 2013, the Votans were actually kidnapping and studying humans.

Despite lacking the whole story, he's on the right track with much of this speculation. But, with no answers yet, Nolan and Amanda take Gordon to Rafe McCawley's house where the four of them drink and reminisce about the world before Votans arrived. As children, both Nolan and Amanda wanted to be astronauts after watching the movie made about his life. Robert Pattinson played Gordon in the movie, and Amanda embarrassedly reveals she was a fan of Twilight as a kid.

As they drink, Nolan and Amanda reveal the state of the world to Gordon - no airplanes, no USA, no space travel. Everyone is smiling, Amanda starts falling asleep on Nolan's shoulder, and Rafe is making plans for the next day. All seems perfect, but after they go to bed, Gordon attacks Amanda in her sleep, nearly suffocating her. Despite Rafe's protests, Nolan is forced to arrest him. Amanda can barely speak as Yewll examines her for injuries. Her throat is red and bruised. Nolan takes Amanda to Doc Yewll's office for further testing while Tommy and Irisa take Gordon to jail.

Once in Doc Yewll's office, Nolan grabs Yewll because it's obvious she must have known Gordon was lying. He says, "[Gordon] nearly killed Amanda. Doc, if that had happened, do you have any idea what I'd be doing to you right now?" Amanda's voice is too horse to speak as she watches the confrontation. Everyone then gathers in the lawkeeper's office where Yewll reveals to them that Gordon was a prototype in an alien assassin program. Back when the Votans were studying humans, Indogene volunteers would be surgically altered to infiltrate, collect information, and even kill. Gordon McClintock was a perfect candidate because he would have access to the highest level of Human leadership - president, prime minister, defense secretary, or anyone else important. In this case, it was Amanda.

Gordon doesn't remember his life as an Indogene. His brain is filled with memories taken from the real Gordon McClintok, so he struggles with this news. With Rafe's help, Gordon escapes, and Rafe tells everyone he died in the mines. Amanda can't help but hope he managed to go back to Alabama and reunite with his wife, now an old lady.

The Plague & Datak Tarr[]

As the election grows closer, Amanda still doesn't have an opponent, but she's facing an outbreak of viral haemorrhagic fever, commonly known as the Irath flu. Six people have already died and 21 more are sick, so Amanda must make a decision. The town council wants to round up all Irathients in Defiance and lock them up until the flu passes. Irathients can carry the disease and spread it but do not get sick themselves. Amanda objects to the idea, fearing an uprising, but she's overruled. Nolan, who's daughter Irisa is Irathient, is deeply angered by this decision.

Nolan plans to free Irisa from captivity, but Amanda stands in his way. Before anything can come of their faceoff, Doc Yewll arrives with news of a cure that Nolan and Connor head off to retrieve. Nolan and Amanda are both showing signs of sickness, but push forward. When the illness does force Amanda down, Stahma tries to get Amanda to appoint Datak as temporary mayor. Amanda says Rafe should serve as interim mayor while she is recovering, but Datak takes charge anyway.

Nolan and Connor run into trouble returning the cure to Defiance. Nolan passes out, but Connor is awake to see Datak brutally murder and beat an Irathient woman. Datak kills Connor because it doesn't fit the heroic narrative he is trying to spin. Amanda has Connor's body burned with the rest of those who died. She is unaware that Datak killed him as she publicly praises Nolan, Connor, and Datak over the radio. Datak's son, Alak, works as the radio DJ, so he has Alak cut Amanda off so that Datak can announce he plans to run against Amanda for Mayor of Defiance.

Amanda loses her bid for reelection to Datak Tarr after he schemes to discredit Nolan, and by association, Amanda. She remains loyal to Nolan and wants to publicly announce her support for him, but Nolan chooses to leave Defiance before the election, telling her, "if Datak wins this election, he is gonna kick open the doors to Colonel Marsh and his E-Rep goons, and a year from now, you won't even recognize this place." And he was right.

Pre-Season 2[]

After Amanda loses the election and Kenya goes missing, Amanda takes over the NeedWant. She almost quits the job because she doesn't fit in, but Deirdre “Treasure Doll” Lamb convinces her to stay. Deirdre reminds Amanda that the people of the NeedWant are a family, and Deirdre would have nowhere to go without it. With Kenya's disappearance, family is exactly what Amanda needs, so she stays. At this time, Amanda is still dressing in the same clothes and doing her hair the same way she did during season 1, but she soon begins dressing in her sister’s clothes and working as a madam, connecting clients with night porters. She also develops an addiction to a drug called adreno and is using it to cope with the loss of her job, her individual identity, and her sister.

The Earth Republic appoints Niles Pottinger to be her successor. When she first meets him, she calls him "Harry Potter" and refuses to be his adviser.

Season 2[]

New Roles in Life[]

Now that Amanda is running the NeedWant and Stahma is running the Tarr family business, Amanda is paying Stahma for security the same way Kenya paid Datak. Amanda believes she is just keeping the NeedWant afloat until Kenya returns, but Stahma is hiding a secret from her. She killed Kenya, making each of their interactions contain a sad, foreboding subtext. One day Amanda will have to learn the truth.

Since Niles Pottinger has been appointed mayor, Amanda has refused his offer to name her Chief of Staff 17 times. She despises the Earth Republic and everything it stands for, but after Pottinger takes drastic action to stop anti-Earth Republic sentiment from spreading through Defiance, she decides to take the job. As much as she hates the Earth Republic, she believes she could have stopped Pottinger from getting a young man killed. She decides that there's an argument to be made for having one hand on the wheel. Although she cannot be in charge, she can help steer the Earth Republic in the right direction. Taking this job compromises her beliefs, but it is better than standing back and doing nothing while the Earth Republic kills people. Still, she's extremely blunt with Pottinger. "You want my advice, you get it unfiltered or not at all."

Nolan's Return[]

When Nolan returns in episode 2, Amanda is thrilled. She runs to hug him and immediately begins flirting with him. During their reunion, a bomb goes off, so Amanda convinces Pottinger to let Nolan solve the case. In a scene echoing the pilot episode, Amanda repeats what Nolan once told her. "He tracked Buster Bullwin across the Storm Divide and presented Starren Dahrti with the head of the man who murdered his sister." Unlike in the first episode season one, Amanda now has total faith in him to catch the bomber.

After months away, Nolan has questions about Amanda's complete change in appearance and Kenya's absence, so she fills him in on what he's missed. He then says what she's thinking, but refuses to say out loud herself. Kenya might be dead. Amanda changes the subject, and they begin a bit of a role play. "A down-on-his-luck scavenger and a lovely lady who takes pity on him." She flirtatiously promises to thank him properly for catching the bomber. He succeeds, and Amanda once again gives him the badge and asks him to be the town's Lawkeeper.

Nolan is disgusted by the idea of working for the Earth Republic and cannot understand how Amanda can stomach it. She says, "look, I know what it's like to have power, and I know what it's like to not have power. Having it is better." She argues with him until he takes the badge which prompts him to proclaim that she hasn't changed at all. She smiles. it's exactly what she needed to hear after losing her sense of self when she lost the election. As she suggested earlier, she invites Nolan to her bedroom where they sleep together, not knowing Pottinger has installed cameras to watch and record her every private action. He's been recording Amanda for a period of time, also watching her do adreno alone in her room, something that will soon come back to haunt her.

Exposed Vulnerabilities[]

Stahma Tarr had been supplying Amanda with adreno, but Niles Pottinger confiscated Stahma's stock in a scheme to get Amanda's attention. He then strategically allowed Amanda to see that while Stahma no longer has a supply, he does. With Adreno off the market, Amanda is in bad shape as she starts going through withdrawal. When she finds a man roughing up a night porter for insulting him, Amanda gets into a fight with the man. She beats him up, and keeps kicking after he's down. Adreno was developed by the EMC for usage by soldiers. When used in battle, it can incite a killing frenzy which is why Amanda is experiencing violent outbursts while on the drug. [4]

Nolan pulls Amanda off the man and notices her pupils are dilated, but she insists that she's fine. In truth, she's falling apart even worse than she allows anyone to see. Desperate to overcome her withdrawal symptoms, Amanda fixes her hair, puts on a dress and heels, and goes to Pottinger where she confesses that she uses adreno. Her mouth twitches as Pottinger gets out his adreno. His plan to get her to come to him out of desperation has worked perfectly.

Stahma later brings Amanda tea to help with the withdrawal symptoms. Amanda tells Stahma that she hasn't withdrawn, and Stahma replies, "Oh, of course. Only a fool would underestimate your resourcefulness." Amanda then says that with Nolan's return, it feels like the old days, and she asks Stahma if she thinks Kenya is ever coming back. Stahma says, "I wish with all my heart."

The episode ends with Nolan seeking comfort in Amanda's room with a bottle of whiskey after a difficult day with his daughter. In the following episode, Amanda is first seen happily in bed with Nolan, ready for a second round of morning sex when Irisa enters her room without knocking. She informs them that Pottinger is looking for Nolan after Pottinger was attacked by raiders. Irisa leaves Amanda and Nolan to go for round two.

Amanda later follows Nolan and Irisa to Pottinger's office, arriving slightly later than they do. Things are getting heated between Pottinger and Nolan, so Amanda steps in to agree with Nolan. Pottinger wants Nolan to search for tech that was stolen in a raid, but Nolan thinks it's pointless without any leads. Amanda tells Pottinger that they should keep their eyes on the black market for any sign of the stolen tech, which would lead them to the raiders. Pottinger dismissively tells Amanda to know her place and sends all three of them out of his office.

Later, Pottinger visits the NeedWant to apologize for the way he spoke to Amanda. He tells her that he values her input, and reveals that the raider attack dredged up old memories. When he was 15, he was away at boarding school when the Votans attacked the school and locked the students up for 11 days with no food. He tells Amanda that they held him down, but he can't stand to finish the rest of the story. Later, Amanda tells Pottinger about the time she was attacked and raped in New York. She tells him this story because "I didn't want you to think you're alone because you're not." Pottinger reacts very strongly to hearing that Amanda got pregnant and had an abortion after the rape. Neither the audience or Amanda are aware at this time that Pottinger was the one to rape her and get her pregnant, but Pottinger's face betrays a personal connection beyond concern for her wellbeing.

A Malfunctioning EGO Device[]

Pottinger seems to have mastered using private knowledge about Amanda's life to manipulate her into relating to him, but his luck starts to turn when Amanda reports she's been attacked in her bedroom. She tells Nolan that she's worried that the person who attacked her in New York has followed her to Defiance. Nolan offers to have Tommy and Irisa watch over her, but Amanda insists she'll be ok. Later, Amanda runs into Nolan in the streets where he says horribly hurtful things about her and compares her to her sister. "People like you and me, we screw our way through lives, yeah? And have relationships that end in train wrecks." He also says, "You're mine, Amanda," the phrase her attacker said to her. She escapes from "Nolan" only to see him walking through the streets with Irisa and Tommy. She realizes the Nolan who said the hurtful things wasn't Nolan at all. She was hallucinating him saying her deepest insecurities to her.

She goes to Pottinger, trying to find out if she’s experiencing side effects from a bad batch of adreno, but when he denies the possibility, Amanda worries she's going crazy. Pottinger sends her to the McCawley house where the E-Rep watch over her. Nolan arrives and informs her that he found no sign of an attacker in her bedroom, but he did find her adreno kit. He tries to comfort her, but she doesn't want to talk about her addiction yet, so Nolan leaves Tommy and Irisa to watch over her. Amanda is still paranoid that someone is following her, so Tommy gives her a gun which she uses to shoot Irisa in a fit of uncontrolled paranoia. She escapes, and Nolan puts out an emergency bulletin to find her. He suspects Pottinger is spiking Amanda's adreno to get her into bed, but when he finds Amanda foaming at the mouth in the NeedWant, he discovers she has an EGO device implanted in her neck. Nolan carries her to Doc Yewll's office where she removes the device from Amanda's neck.

EGO implants fuse with the body to provide intel, and neither Nolan or Amanda know why someone would infect her with an EGO device without her knowledge. The audience learns Pottinger infected her, but Nolan and Amanda remain in the dark. Although Nolan suspected Pottinger when he thought Amanda’s symptoms were drug induced, the EGO implant throws him off Pottinger’s trail.

Feminism and Friendship[]

Amanda and Stahma have become friends, bonding over their shared loss of Kenya. It's a precarious friendship given that Amanda does not yet know that Stahma is the one who killed Kenya. As they sit together in the NeedWant, Amanda explains the old saying that "Men are from Mars. Women are from Venus." Stahma doesn't get it, so Amanda summarizes it as "Men are dicks. Deal with it." This is something Stahma understands, but she doesn't think that her culture will ever stop worshipping dicks. Amanda reminds her that the world has already changed, and encourages her to band together with the other Castithan women to change their culture. Ultimately, Stahma can't convince the other Castithan women to work with her, so she kills them. This was not exactly what Amanda intended with her advice.

Amanda also reveals that she's been off adreno for two weeks.

Later, Nolan and Amanda are having a drink together as Pottinger walks in to reveal that he's being sent on a fool's errand as punishment for failing to capture a gulanee for the Earth Republic to use as a weapon. He tells Amanda that the two best things the Scots produced are single malt and poets. As Pottinger well knows, scotch is her favorite drink. He quotes poetry to her, and she walks off with him. Nolan mistakenly believes this to mean Amanda isn’t interested in him anymore and turns his attention to Berlin who is also having "that kind of day" after ending her relationship with Tommy.

When Amanda discovers that Nolan is sleeping with Berlin, she gets drunk and tells Deirdre that she regrets not telling Nolan she had feelings for him before he found someone else. She advises Deirdre not to make the same mistake, advice that will lead Deirdre to take drastic actions to split Alak Tarr from his wife.

A Job Offer[]

Since Pottinger is on the outs with Viceroy Mercado, Mercado summons Amanda to the mayor's office. He tells her that "even back when you were Mayor and repeatedly kicking the Earth Republic in the teeth, I knew you were acting on principle." He likes Amanda and thinks Pottinger has no character. Amanda wants to know what this means, but he won't tell her anything other than that his superiors consider Pottinger to be a necessary evil. Mercado doesn't think Pottinger is necessary at all and offers Amanda the job of mayor. Amanda knows that she won't be able to take this job without doing everything the Earth Republic wants, and she won't compromise herself like that. She also won't betray Pottinger by taking his job and ending his career. Mercado remarks that this is the type of character he likes about her, but still dismisses her.

The Return of Kenya Rosewater?[]

After Nolan and Berlin arrest Mahsuvus Gorath for working as a spy for the Votanis Collective, Amanda gets a call from someone claiming he will kill Kenya if Amanda does not free Mahsuvus. Unfortunately for Amanda, Mahsuvus isn't a prisoner she can easily free. He has knowledge of a bomb in New York that could destroy the city, and Nolan needs to get the information out of him. When Amanda tells Nolan about the blackmailer, he tries to coordinate a plan with Irisa to use their hailers to track down Kenya. Irisa goes missing, and the plan fails, so Amanda knocks out Nolan and attempts to free Mahsuvus. She begins by stealing drugs from Doc Yewll. Although Yewll catches her, she believes that Amanda is trying to get a fix, and offers her help for her addiction rather than trying to stop her. Amanda then drugs Mahsuvus and sneaks him out of E-Rep custody, but Nolan catches her.

Mahusvus gets the upper hand and holds a gun to Amanda's head, threatening to shoot her if Nolan doesn't let him go, but Datak Tarr (who doesn't want to be incriminated for his dealings with Mahsuvus) surprises everyone by shooting Mahsuvus from afar. Mahsuvus tells Nolan the location of the bomb before he dies, but Amanda fears she’s lost her opportunity to see her sister again. She begins pounding against Nolan's chest in desperation, but Nolan reminds her that Kenya's kidnappers don't know about Mahsuvus's death, so Amanda desguises Nolan as Mahsuvus and brings him to the kidnappers. A shootout occurs, but there's no sign of Kenya. Amanda cries and leans against Nolan's side as they turn to leave, but then Kenya appears and the two sisters are reunited.

Amanda and Nolan want to know where Kenya has been, but Kenya has no memories of her whereabouts. Nolan wants to dig into Kenya’s missing memories, but Amanda thinks she just needs time and takes her to the NeedWant to reunite with her old employees and friends. Stahma Tarr (who murdered Kenya at the end of season 1) is in the NeedWant. She rushes out in a panic after seeing Kenya and begins her own investigation into Kenya's reappearance.

Once they’re alone, Amanda asks Kenya if she drove her away by being too controlling. Kenya says Amanda's always too controlling, but that's not why she left. She doesn't know why she did, but she thanks Amanda for keeping the NeedWant open in her absence. Amanda attempts to act like everything is normal. She tells Kenya that the NeedWant is hers, and she should go back to it. Kenya suggests they run it together, but Amanda laughs off the suggestion, thinking that would be a disaster because they're both too stubborn. Kenya suspects Amanda wants to be mayor again, but Amanda tells her that helping the current mayor is enough. Kenya doesn't buy it. She knows that Amanda loves being the boss. Amanda says it's not that she loves it. She's just extremely good at it.

As Amanda tries to go back to normal, both Nolan and Stahma are highly suspicious and separately investigating what happened. Nolan interrogates Kenya and realizes that Kenya only remembers events that Amanda knew about. Meanwhile, Stahma digs up Kenya's body, confirming that Kenya is dead and whoever is with Amanda is not her sister.

With this information, Stahma finds Amanda walking home through the streets. She tells Amanda that she loved Kenya and has come to think of Amanda as a friend, which is why it's so difficult to inform her that Kenya is dead, and the woman in Amanda's room is an imposter. Amanda threatens to hurt Stahma if she dares repeat "this lie" again, so Stahma puts on an act and congratulates Amanda on a happy homecoming with her sister.

Nolan then approaches Amanda on the street to tell her what he's discovered, and they go in search of Kenya. They find that Kenya has stolen Amanda's gun and disappeared. Nolan gently asks Amanda to sit down. Amanda refuses, but Nolan keeps talking as she still attempts to deny the truth. He tells her that whoever implanted Amanda with the EGO device a few weeks earlier stole her memories to create a clone of Kenya from an Indogene. Because they don't know Pottinger implanted her EGO device, they don't realize it was him. Indogene Kenya gets on a landcoach, leaving Defiance as Amanda holds a memorial for her sister.

Trapped in a Mine with Pottinger[]

After Amanda's old rival, Olfin Tennety, returns to Defiance, Amanda joins her on a tour of the McCawley mines. Amanda appoints Nolan to escort Olfin on the tour. Amanda follows along as Pottinger gives Olfin a history of the mines and Berlin films. Berlin hangs back with Nolan and Irisa to look at the gulanite river while Amanda follows Pottinger and Tennety deeper into the mine. Olfin insults Amanda's career path, just as she did in season 1, but Amanda takes it in stride. She says she finds the change from mayor to madam invigorating. Then, the mines collapse. Nolan, Berlin, and Irisa get out, but Amanda, Olfin, and Pottinger are trapped.

Olfin is hit by falling rock and dies. Amanda attempts to revive her old rival, but she's too far gone. Amanda then grabs Olfin's hailer and attempts to call Nolan. The connection is spotty, but she has confirmed that she's alive, invigorating Nolan's search for her. After she calls Nolan, Pottinger jealously notes that Nolan was the first person she thought of to call. They then sit and wait, but oxygen is running low. When talking about historic monarchs, Pottinger asks Amanda if she finds mental illness intriguing which she confirms she does. "How fortunate for me," Pottinger replies. They joke about who will die first, and then Amanda apologizes for being so hard on him. Pottinger kisses Amanda, and then she kisses him back.

After the kiss, Pottinger confesses that he's a monster and that Amanda should kill him to save the oxygen for herself. He wants to do one decent think before he dies. Amanda tells him that he's no worse than a lot of people she knows, but of course, he is far worse than she knows. She refuses to kill him, and he eventually passes out. When Nolan arrives, she pushes him to get Oxygen to Pottinger and get him out of the mine first.

Deputy Rosewater[]

After identifying Deirdre's body, Amanda goes to Nolan to talk to him about the murder investigation. When she arrives, he reveals that Irisa stole a terrasphere (a weapon of mass destruction) which is currently taking his attention over the murder of a single individual. She understands he has to go after Irisa, so she asks him to name her deputy. He does, and she says, "I was mayor of this town. I think I can handle being lawkeeper."

Amanda then goes to the arch, where Frei Poole and Jessica "Berlin" Rainer are already investigating. Berlin is surprised to see Amanda on the case instead of Nolan. Still, Amanda takes charge of the investigation and turns her attention towards Alak, correctly guessing that he was having sex with Deirdre. Berlin then notes that there's a surveillance camera in the arch with no memory card. Alak just became an even bigger suspect. Amanda seems invigorated by the investigation, snarking with Alak and Datak as she attempts to figure out who did it.

As Berlin and Amanda investigate the case, Berlin reveals to Amanda that she and Nolan have ended their sexual relationship because Nolan has feelings for Amanda. This causes Amanda to pause and give a little smile before she catches up with Berlin. Amanda then recalls the night she drunkenly complained to Deirdre about losing Nolan to Berlin. At this time, she advised Deirdre never to let someone come between herself and a man the way Amanda let Berlin come between her and Nolan. Amanda seems to be getting closer to the truth - Christie murdered Deirdre after an argument because Deirdre was in love with Christie's husband (Alak) - but Stahma impedes the investigation before it gets any further. Stahma sends a dying Castithan man to confess to the murder in exchange for taking in his daughter, Andina, as a handmaiden in the Tarr household.

Amanda seems suspicious of this confession, but she doesn't have any proof the Tarrs engaged in a cover-up. She stands outside the Tarr house as Andina arrives. Stahma smiles to her, but Amanda remains stoic. The song Doll Parts plays with the lyrics, "I fake it so real / I am beyond fake / and someday you will ache like I ache." It's a revealing song for Amanda's character. Her friend just died, she's dressing up in someone else's clothes, her sister is missing, and she's growing increasingly suspicious of Stahma. The audience also knows Stahma has killed Amanda's sister, giving even more power to the lyrics.

Although Amanda lost a close friend in this episode, Berlin and Amanda appear to become friends after this investigation. In both friendships, Amanda is searching for a surrogate family after losing Kenya. Deirdre convinced Amanda to stay in the NeedWant because the people who work in the NeedWant are a family, and in season 3, Amanda says she has treated Berlin like a sister and that she considers herself to be Berlin's family.

The Truth About Kenya[]

Niles Pottinger learns that the Tarrs killed Kenya Rosewater, so he handcuffs them together in an obscure location and sends Amanda in with a gun. She holds the gun in front of Stahma and proclaims, "I had one thing in this mess of a world. One person who I could depend on. One person who I loved and who loved me back unconditionally. It was my baby sister, and you took her away from me." Stahma tells Amanda that she loved Kenya, but Amanda refuses to believe Kenya loved her back. "Your love was not returned." Stahma prays as Amanda holds the gun to her head, but Amanda leaves without shooting them.

Amanda tells Pottinger that if they kill the Tarrs, there will be a power vacuum in Defiance. "The crime lords will go to war, and blood will be shed on the streets." Although probable, this is mostly just an excuse. She hates herself for wanting to kill Stahma Tarr. "I wanted to shove that gun into Stahma Tarr's mouth and pull the trigger. I wanted it bad. But what does that say about me?" Killing Stahma would not be the justice Amanda continuously proclaims to want.

Deleted Scene[]

The dvd/blu ray release of season 2 includes an extended version of the scene between Amanda and the Tarrs. Some of the expanded dialog is as follows:

Amanda: It was my baby sister, and you took her away from me. Where's the justice in that?
Stahma: There is no justice. Only regret. Every moment. Of every day. Kenya, Kenya changed my life. Inspired me. Opened my eyes. I was sleep walking before I met her, bowing to a man who should be bowing to me. I should have fought my husband. I should have fought for her. Eventually I did challenge him. I did challenge the Castithan ways. I won. Because of Kenya. Because she taught me that I could change. I only wish I could have changed in time. I didn't now. I just didn't know.
Amanda: Am I supposed to be moved or something?
Stahma: I can't change what you feel. You have every right to take my life. Pull the trigger.
Amanda: I knew Kenya better than anyone in this world. She had a gift for knowing what people need. It was a business. She didn't love you any more than she loved Rupert the miner or Datak. Your love was not returned. Before you die, I want you to know that.

The Earth Republic vs Nolan and Mordecai[]

After Irisa is possessed by the Kaziri, kills Tommy, and goes on a rampage to destroy the world (starting with New York), Amanda faces a choice. Nolan claims that he and Mordecai, an Irathient man, have a plan to save both Irisa and the planet. Mordecai is a bit socially awkward, and Amanda doesn't seem particularly impressed by his capabilities, but Nolan tries to convince her that his plan will work. Ultimately, Amanda decides to go along with Doc Yewll's plan to kill Irisa to stop the Kiziri. She knows that Yewll will do anything to save her own skin, so if Yewll thinks this plan will do that, then it's likely to work. This logic leaves Nolan visibly disappointed in her and upset. He stares at her for a long moment before tuning back into the conversation around them.

Amanda asks Nolan to forgive her for ordering him to be locked up. When he resists and pulls a gun on Mercado, Amanda retaliates by holding a letter opener to Mordecai's throat. Nolan doesn't believe she'd kill an innocent man, but she tells him it's an attractive plan, and it's up to him to come up with something better. Nolan surrenders and breaks out of jail to execute his plan.

When Yewll and Pottinger are looking for someone to execute Irisa, Amanda tells them that she's an excellent shot and gets them to give her a gun. Amanda then threatens to show Yewll just how good of a shot she is, prompting Yewll to stand up for herself.

Yewll confesses to Amanda that she was forced to build an Indogene clone of Kenya for an unnamed individual in the Votanis Collective who wanted leverage over Amanda. Yewll protects Pottinger's identity, and they both let Amanda think that Pottinger would have been noble and stopped Yewll from building the Kenya Clone. This massive lie endears Amanda to Pottinger. She's starting to see him as heroic and self-sacrificial after he took the blame for letting someone as dangerous as Irisa work as a deputy.

When Amanda, Yewll, and Pottinger get to Irisa's location, Amanda aims a gun at Irisa. She pauses so long that Pottinger offers to take a shot, but she doesn't let go of the gun. She reassures him that she can do this, but before she shoots, Nolan shoots the gun out of her hands. He then handcuffs Amanda to a vehicle and knocks out Pottinger and Yewll. With them out of the way, Nolan proceeds to execute his original plan and manages to save Irisa and deactivate the Kaziri.

Amanda's intentions are not entirely clear in aiming a gun at Irisa. Julie Benz thinks that Amanda took the gun so that she could buy time. She does not think that Amanda could ever kill Irisa when she couldn't even kill Stahma,[1]. Still, Amanda has been described as a pragmatist who would do whatever is necessary to save the world. The characterization of Amanda as a complete pragmatist isn't entirely consistent with her behavior when Kenya's life was on the line. She impeded an investigation into a bomb with the potential to completely destroy New York to save her sister. And, in this episode, Amanda did tell Nolan to come up with a better plan and did hesitate before shooting Irisa, so the idea that she took the gun so that no one else at the Earth Republic would do it first holds up to that logic. Still, it's never 100% clear on screen which direction Amanda's thoughts were leaning.

After Amanda realizes that Nolan's plan worked and they're all going to live, she is overjoyed and excited. She kisses Pottinger and takes him back to her room to sleep with him. Although a deleted scene shows that Mercado summons Amanda to talk to him before they sleep together, the episode implies they do celebrate their survival by sleeping together. When Amanda does go to speak with Mercado, he tells her that the mines have collapsed. She asks about Nolan and learns that he is missing and presumed dead.

Post Season 2[]

After the Earth Republic HQ in New York is destroyed, The Earth Republic officially leaves Defiance, including Niles Pottinger. Pottinger Asks Amanda to go with him, but she refuses and is reinstated as mayor of Defiance. With Nolan and Irisa buried underground and presumed dead, she needs new lawkeeers, so she appoints two former members of the Earth Republic who stay behind in Defiance. Frei Poole becomes a deputy, and Jessica "Berlin" Rainer becomes a lawkeeper.

Although Amanda retains ownership of the NeedWant, she stops working as a madam and starts dressing in her regular clothes again when she returns to her position as mayor.

With the mines destroyed and the Earth Republic gone, there's not much left in Defiance, and the town's population dwindles to 3,000 people from 6,000. Everyone with a skill marketable to the outside world leaves except those like Amanda, who feel it is their duty to stay and protect the remaining people who can't protect themselves and have no prospects elsewhere. For seven months, Amanda hangs on by her fingernails, attempting to keep the town afloat.

Season 3[]

Keeping the Town Alive in a Dire Situation[]

The season opens with a power outage and the stasis nets going dark. Gulinte reserves are rapidly depleting, so Amanda follows the town charter, which states they must reserve power for heating and medical purposes. Because she is both mayor and owner of the NeedWant, she is summoned to the NeedWant when a fight breaks out. A down on his luck miner attempts to rob the place, and Berlin is minorly injured in the fight.

When Berlin and Amanda go to Doc Yewll's office, they learn that she plans to leave town. Amanda tells Yewll, "Come on, Doc. You're the only doctor in town. If you leave, people will die. I don't want that on my conscience, and I don't think you do either." This works, and Yewll decides to stay.

Amanda then falls asleep on the sofa in her office, wrapped in a blanket and still holding papers in her hand. She wakes up when she hears someone entering. She picks up her gun, but she's stunned to see Nolan at her door, alive and well. Amanda asks him where he's been, and he reveals he's been buried under rock for 7 and a half months. She asks about Irisa, and Nolan reveals she's alive and downstairs. This is the end of that conversation. There doesn't seem to be any animosity between them from the previous season.

Shocked by the news that he'd been unconscious for so long, Nolan pours himself a glass of scotch. Amanda dips a cloth in the scotch and uses it to clean the wound on his forehead. While Nolan just woke up, Amanda has lived with his absence for much longer, so she's focused on his sudden return and the mysterious wound on his forehead, but he's too worried about the fact that the Votanis Collective is coming for Defiance to waste time. Without the stasis nets, the town is vulnerable, but Amanda explains that when the mines collapsed at the end of season 2, the town lost access to their gulinite. Of course, Nolan managed to get out of the mines, so there must be a way in. He tosses Amanda's jacket to her and brings her on a mission to figure it out. This is a sliver of hope for Amanda, who spent months without gulinite, just struggling to survive. Finally, she might not be on the brink of collapse.

Meeting Kindzi & T'evgin[]

Nolan, Irisa, and Amanda enter the mines, where they find someone has moved in. Amanda gets separated from Nolan and Irisa when she gets stunned by a flying electric orb, but Nolan and Irisa continue deeper into the mines, where they find Kindzi. She attacks them, but Amanda wakes up and finds them just in time to save them. She shoots Kindzi, and Nolan sends Irisa to grab their roller so they can get Kindzi to a doctor and save her.

Amanda takes charge of nearly every interaction with the newly arrived Omec, ordering people to do as she says and showing herself to be a strong leader when interacting with T'evgin himself. This begins when Yewll refuses to help Kindzi out of fear. Amanda threatens to kill Yewll if she doesn't help her and signals Nolan to pull out his gun to show she's serious. He does as instructed, and Yewll gives in, but she tells Nolan to chain Kindzi up. Nolan once again looks to Amanda, who gives him the signal to do what Yewll asks. Yewll then explains that Kindzi is an Omec, a member of the race who called the shots over Votans for a very long time.

Amanda goes to a Castithan Merchant in the NeedWant, where she learns about the Omec. He tells her that every 76 years when the omec planet came close to the other Votan planets, they would kidnap thousands of Votans to use as slaves and prey. It was called "The Dread Harvest."

T'evgin then enters the NeedWant looking for his daughter, Kindzi. Most people in the NeedWant clear out, but Amanda brings in Nolan, and the three of them begin talking. Amanda tries to negotiate with T'evgin. He needs fuel to repair his ship, and Defiance needs fuel to get the stasis nets running. She wants a 50/50 agreement with him. Defiance can use his equipment to access their mines, and they can share the gulinite. "Everybody wins." T'evgin smashes the bar with his fist, threatening to kill everyone in town rather than negotiate, but Amanda doesn't give in. She confesses to shooting Kindzi, but insists she was within her rights to shoot because Kindzi attacked first. She promises to return her to T'evgin when they reach an agreement about the gulinite.

Meanwhile, Kindzi breaks out of the lawkeeper's office and kills a young teenage boy, so Nolan and T'evgin work together to track her down. When they bring an injured Kindzi to Doc Yewll's office, Amanda is forced to make a decision. T'evgin explains that he needs to use Yewll's skin to help save Kindzi. Yewll is terrified, and Nolan initially protects her from T'evgin, but when T'evgin tells Amanda that he won't agree to the gulinite trade without Yewll's cooperation, Amanda orders Nolan to hold Yewll down. Nolan, Berlin, Irisa, and Amanda then give her a sedative to numb the pain and take a skin sample from her. T'evgin then agrees to Amanda's deal, and they reach a peace agreement.

Later, Amanda counts down to the moment the power returns with Berlin and other town members. When the lights come on, they celebrate, and a woman beside Amanda hugs her in excitement.

Sabotaged by Datak Tarr[]

Datak and Stahma Tarr return to Defiance after seven months away with the news that Rafe McCawley died at the hands of the Votanis Collective. Amanda then sends Nolan into the V.C. camp to get intel on them. She tells him to get his ass back in one piece and not to take it too personally, but he just says, "don't worry about it."

When Datak gets caught gathering weapons immediately after his return, Berlin has him locked up in the jail cell for the night. The next day, Amanda approaches Datak, revealing she doesn't really care about the weapons. That's not why she kept him locked up all night. She states, "Every day you've been away, I've been waiting to hear news that either you or Stahma, preferably both, had been killed in the Badlands. In my best daydreams, your deaths were very slow and very painful. But now you're back. And I have a choice. I can either focus on making you pay for Kenya, or we can move forward."

She makes Datak promise that he will get the criminal element organized and fighting for the common good, but she won't let him have his weapons back. She has them stored in the town armory. Unbeknownst to Amanda, this is exactly what Data wanted. He has been secretly working for the Votanis Collective. The weapons were infested with shrill and completely destroyed the town's weapon supply.

The Demise of the Arch & Niles Pottinger[]

After the arch is blown up in front of Nolan and Amanda, general Rahm Tak appears before the town as a hologram, taking credit for the explosion. He publicly calls Amanda a liar for not revealing that the town's armory has been destroyed. He then proclaims that he will destroy the town, but "Votans of Defiance, I make you this promise: your life will be spared if you surrender, but for those of you who side with the humans, there will be no mercy."

Nolan and Amanda then travel to Station Arrowhead, an EMC black site that has been closed since the 2020s where they expect to find weapons they can use to fight Rahm Tak, but instead they find Niles Pottinger living with four biomen named after the members of the Beatles. Nolan, Amanda, and Pottinger sit down to dinner, where Pottinger explains that Station Arrowhead "was built as a refuge for the government elite in case the world went to hell. There's a fully stocked seed vault, functional rain chamber. There are even DNA samples of old-world animals."

After an awkward dinner together, Amanda reveals that she and Nolan are in search of weapons. Pottinger tells them they can take as many weapons as they can fit in their roller, but he takes Amanda aside for a "word in private" instead of allowing her to follow Nolan to the weapons. Nolan is hesitant to leave her alone with Pottinger, but she insists it will be fine, so the biomen take Nolan away. Once they're alone, Pottinger tries to convince Amanda to come live with him, but she insists she can't abandon her town and watch it burn.

Pottinger then hugs Amanda and says, "We're meant to be together. Yeah? I belong to you, and you belong to me. Amanda, you're mine." Amanda pulls away from him in shock. His words scared Amanda because they're the same words her attacker used on her many years ago. She then sends him in search of scotch and begins mildly panicking. She picks up a small sculpture as if weighing it to use as a weapon. Pottinger's bioman, George, notices and orders her to put it down. She does, but she also asks George to take her to Nolan. He refuses because, unbeknownst to Amanda, Pottinger had Nolan knocked out and locked in a cage. Amanda then turns her attention to a locked room which George refuses to tell her the purpose of.

When Pottinger returns, Amanda feigns a desire to stay with him. She begins flirting with him, pretending to propose a deal. Pottinger gives Nolan every weapon he has, and in exchange, she'll stay with him. "Defiance gets the guns, and you get me." He's so tempted by her that Amanda uses his distraction to grab his gun. She aims the gun at him and orders him to open the locked room.

Pottinger attempts to make excuses for himself, repeating things he's told her in the past about how he's unwell and suffered abuse, but she still forces him to open the room. Once he unlocks the door, Amanda is disgusted to find a bust of herself, a painting of Connor Lang, and the mask and flashlight used the night he raped her in New York. She demands he play a video chip, and her disgust turns to horror as footage of herself using drugs in her room and sleeping with Nolan begin to play on the walls. Realizing he stalked and raped her before following her to Defiance where he planted hidden cameras in her room to film her most private moments, she shoots and kills him.

Nolan then rushes into the room, informing her that Pottinger had a singularity bomb wired to his chest as a security measure so that no one could mutiny against him. Amanda is frozen in shock. She tells Nolan that Pottinger raped her, so he hugs her, but they need to run before the entire station explodes. He grabs her hand and pulls her out of the room. They keep running until they reach their roller. Fortunately, they manage to escape, but the entire station, including all the weapons they need to fight Rahm Tak, is destroyed.

Later, as they stop to refuel by the side of the road, Amanda tells Nolan that she regrets shooting Pottinger in the heat of the moment. She says, "if I hadn't killed Pottinger, we would have those weapons to fight the V.C." To which Nolan responds, "Yeah, possible. Also possible that killing Pottinger saved us from being murdered by Biomen or, in your case, something much worse." She kisses him on the cheek, thanking him for being one of the good guys. As he smiles, his eyes roll back, and he collapses on the ground, seizing.

Saving Nolan & Irisa's Lives[]

Amanda brings a seizing Nolan to Doc Yewll's office where Doc realizes that the arktech in Nolan's brain that kept him alive underground between seasons 2 and 3 has malfunctioned. Because sleeper pods were not designed to maintain human life, the tech tethered Nolan and Irisa's brains together. When Amanda and Nolan left town, the connection between him and Irisa was severed, causing them to both suffer brain injuries. To save their lives, Amanda must locate Irisa so that Yewll can perform surgery on them.

With Berlin's help, Amanda finds Irisa unconscious in the streets. They get her to Doc Yewll's office, but Yewll doesn't have the technology to save their lives. Amanda must turn to Kindzi, a woman she once shot, to get the technology Yewll needs. Kindzi doesn't have much interest in helping Amanda, but Amanda pleads with her. "Don't punish him for my mistakes... Please, I can't lose him." Kindzi concedes, not for Amanda, but for Nolan who helped her after Amanda shot him. This makes them even. The surgery is a success, and when Nolan wakes up, she tells him, "You scared me. I don't know what I would have done without you."

Attacked by Stahma Tarr[]

One night, as Amanda returns to her office, Stahma holds a gun to her head. Nolan recently discovered that Stahma and Datak blew up the arch for Rahm Tak, making Stahma a wanted woman. Because there's no easy way out of Defiance, Stahma needs Amanda to get the guards at the stasis nets to lower them. She plans to kidnap Amanda, escape Defiance, and once she is sure Nolan has not followed them, she will free Amanda.

As Stahma waits for Amanda's response to her demands, Amanda recognizes that Stahma's gun belongs to a deputy she killed, adding murder to Stahma's list of crimes for the day. They have a heated exchange,

Amanda: You're a terrorist. You know that, right?
Stahma: I'm a mother who loved her son. Perhaps more than I should have.
Amanda Laughs
Stahma: Don't laugh at me!
Amanda: Oh, hey, I'm just taking a moment to enjoy what a great mother you are, Stahma. You love Alak so much, you had to kill his wife. Just like Kenya! You loved her so much, you had to kill her!

They then get into a physical fight. Amanda manages to stab Stahma with a letter opener, but Stahma slams Amanda's head into her desk, leaving Amanda unconscious on the floor as she flees to T'evgin for help.

Sentencing Datak Tarr to Death[]

Amanda stands in front of the town council and votes to convict Datak Tarr of treason. The vote is unanimous. Datak Tarr is found guilty and is sentenced to death. Amanda says,

I know how much you and your wife hate me. Believe me, the feeling's more than mutual. But despite it all, I really did think you loved our town. Maybe even as much as I do. I truly believed that, when faced with a common enemy, an enemy that wants to destroy our town and everything it stands for, that you would stand with us. I would never say you are a good man, but siding with a mass murderer? I thought you were better than that. It is with a heavy heart that I vote to convict.

After Datak is locked in jail, awaiting his punishment, he asks Amanda for a final favor. He wishes to die via Castithan ways rather than human ways. Instead of being hanged, he wishes to be strung up on a shaming rack. He reminds her that a death on the shaming rack would be a "slow, agonizing public spectacle," so she agrees. She and Nolan join the crowd of Castithans to watch this final ritual begin.

Betrayed by Berlin[]

Berlin's ex-fiance, Conrad Von Bach, arrives in town looking to win her over. He does so by offering the town a truckload of much-needed weapons in exchange for a drink with Berlin. As the owner of the NeedWant, Amanda offers them free drinks so that Nolan and Berlin can get the weapons they need to start training a militia.

Amanda is initially impressed by Berlin's rich former fiancé. When Berlin visits Amanda in her office one evening, she happily prepares to gossip about Berlin's relationship status, but Berlin is notably nervous. Berlin didn't come chat, but to announce that she is leaving Defiance because she doesn't think Amanda is capable of leading the town against Rahm Tak. When the E-Rep fell, Berlin lost her family, and she hasn't felt safe since. Amanda reminds Berlin that she considers herself to be Berlin's family, but Berlin says that isn't enough. She thinks that "family has to be more than good intentions." As Berlin leaves, Amanda calls her a coward.

Unlike Berlin, Irisa has decided to join the militia despite PTSD that causes her to panic and break down every time she attempts to fire a weapon. Irisa does her best to fight for Defiance, but she falls to the ground crying and hallucinating during target practice. Amanda helps Nolan pick Irisa off the ground and tells Nolan to keep the Militia from falling apart after witnessing Irisa's breakdown. Amanda then wraps her arm across Irisa's shoulders and leads her away from the the town as Nolan gives an inspirational speech. As they listen to Nolan's speech, Irisa regrets that she can't fight, but Amanda tells her not to go back today. She needs more time.

Attacked by Rahm Tak[]

As Nolan and Amanda eat a meal together in the NeedWant, they discuss how Amanda feels personally betrayed by Berlin because she had let her into her life and treated her like a sister. Nolan notes that her actual sister, Kenya, never would have run away. Then, Rahm Tak's people storm the NeedWant. They grab Amanda and hold her at gun point. She tells Nolan to shoot through her, but he refuses, and they are pushed into a group of human hostages. Rahm then appears as a hologram, declaring victory in his war against the humans of Defiance. Amanda refuses to lower the stasis nets and allow Rahm access to the town

She says, "We will fight you to the bitter end. We may not win, but we will make your victory an unbelievably costly one. I just hope you have the balls to show up, so I can shoot them off." Rahm laughs and orders the humans to be executed. His soldiers begin shooting. Some people escape, but Nolan and Amanda are left standing in a sizable group of bodies.

After Rahm Tak utilizes a spy to influence Nolan to make a tactical error resulting in the deaths of many members of the town's militia, Amanda needs to figure out a way to stop Rahm. Fortunately, Doc Yewll has a plan to send someone into Rahm's camp with a bomb implanted in their arm. Both Nolan and Amanda volunteer, but neither are willing to let the other do it. Amanda says, "If [the plan] fails, I become a martyr. You can use it to bring humans and Votans together. I'm not arguing about this." Alak then interupts their heated discussion to remind everyone that Datak has already been sentenced to death, making him the perfect sacrifice.

Amanda goes to Datak for help. Datak is on the shaming rack for his crimes, so Amanda convinces him that making this sacrifice will save his family and remove the stigma from the Tarr name. In exchange for pardoning Stahma for her crimes, Datak enters Rahm Tak's camp with the bomb in his arm. He shocks everyone by cutting off his arm and running before the bomb explodes. Datak is down one arm, but he's alive, and Rahm Tak is dead.


Hate drove the Votanis Collective to collapse that tunnel, brutally murdering 27 brave heroes. Their faces are up here, memorialized on this wall. It's a testament to our spirit that hate took us by surprise. And for our ignorance, we paid a very high price in blood. The blood of husbands and wives, sons, and daughters. We owe them a debt we can never repay. -Amanda Rosewater

After Amanda gives a speech honoring those who died in the militia, Nolan comes up to speak. He breaks down, and Amanda attempts to comfort him, but Indur, confronts Nolan before storming out. Later, When Amanda finds a dead body, Irisa arrives at the scene instead of Nolan. Amanda inquires after Nolan's whereabouts, but Irisa tells her that he's fine. He isn't.

That night, Amanda finds Nolan drinking and plotting to confront T'evgin and Kindzi because he correctly believes they know about the dead body Amanda found earlier. She convinces him to wait until morning when he's sober to go after them. She gets him to sit down, but he sadly asks her, "How many more people got to die?" She doesn't have an answer, but she can't have him falling apart when she needs him most. She tells him, "I need you to sleep this off. All right? For me. Please."

The next morning, before she and Nolan visit T'evgin and Kindzi, Amanda encounters Stahma Tarr in the market. A vendor is refusing to sell to Stahma, so Amanda pretends to buy the item for Stahma instead. Stahma then thanks Amanda for pardoning her, but nothing Amanda is doing for Stahma is out of the kindness of her heart.

Amanda: Don't thank me. Thank your husband. Oh, you can't. He's dead.
Stahma: For what it is worth, I regret the incident in your office.
Amanda: Not yet, you don't.

Amanda and Nolan then go to T'evgin. Unfortunately, he refuses to tell them anything particularly useful. Nolan is on a warpath, seeking justice for those who died, and gets into an altercation with T'evgin. Amanda then leads Nolan out. They don't find the answers they want, but T'evgin promises them that there will be no more murders.

Personality & Interests[]

Amanda is one of the most optimistic and hopeful characters in Defiance when it comes to the future for humans and Votans on Earth. She's always fighting and always looking for plan b if her first plan fails.

At the beginning of the series, Amanda lacks confidence in her own abilities, largely due to her nerves about taking over for such a popular mayor. She otherwise seems to be a highly confident person - something her ex (who knew her when she was much younger) noted about her. She believes that she is capable of changing the world and influencing people. By the end of season 1, she comes to see herself as a good, capable mayor. She wavers briefly in season 3 after nearly everyone from her enemies like Datak to her friends like Berlin express doubt in her ability to lead. Nolan talks her through this moment of doubt by telling her that the town needs her and so does he. She quickly regains her confidence after the momentary lapse.

Amanda has a tendency towards addiction. She is a high functioning alcoholic who can be seen drinking alcohol very frequently, many times when she's alone at her desk. In the pilot episode, Nolan implies scotch is somewhat difficult to come by, but she has no shortage of it. She also develops an addiction to adreno in season 2.

She has been shown to have some interest in music, although it does not match the radio DJ, Alak Tarr's, taste. She keeps a poster for the band Hole (who wrote the song Doll Parts) on her office wall. She moves it to the NeedWant in season 2 and returns it to her office in season 3. In season 1, she also has a poster for Van Halen's 2012 album, A Different Kind Of Truth, in her office. Also in season 1, she requests R.E.M.'s Shiny Happy People be played on the radio, which Alak begrudgingly accepts. And in the season 2 episode entitled Doll Parts, she notes that Alak still doesn't have any R.E.M. in his collection.

Despite the town's rules against carrying guns, Amanda is very good with them. Nolan notes this about her in season 1, and she calls herself an excellent shot in season 2. In season 3, she is frequently carrying a gun. As mayor, Amanda is likely exempt from the anti-weaponry laws, and Amanda moved farther away from the rules set up by mayor Nicky as time went on. Defiance also grew more dangerous after the mines collapsed.

Although she experiences romantic love for both Connor and Nolan, she consistently shows very little interest in romance as a concept. In season 1, Kenya comments on how long its been since Amanda last had a boyfriend, and Amanda makes remarks throughout the series about her disinterest in romance. Unlike her sister, who works as a night porter and is openly very sexual, Amanda has only shown romantic interest in people she has formed friendships with first. Even when working as a madam in the NeedWant, she is not also working as a night porter like her sister. She is only seen with Nolan who is not a paying client. Later that season, she is seen kissing Pottinger, only after Pottinger spent months manipulating her and scheming to earn her affections.

Amanda is very nostalgic over the past, particularly her life in season 1 when she was mayor, Defiance was thriving, and she had both Nolan and Kenya in her life. She says she enjoys doing the dishes because "It's the one time in life where you can actually put things back the way they used to be."


  • Amanda was initially described as being in her 40's, human and very sexy. One source likened her to the character of President Roslin from Battlestar Galactica.
  • Amanda is one of three characters to appear in every episode. The other two are Nolan and Irisa.
  • Kevin Murphy occasionally summed up the conflicts between Nolan and Amanda by saying things like, “Amanda will always do the smart thing, even if it isn’t right. Nolan will do the right thing, even if it isn’t always smart.”
  • During season 2, Amanda keeps her adreno in a set of Russian nesting dolls that once sat on her desk in the mayor's office. [5]
  • Due to the often extremely cold temperatures during filming in Toronto, Julie Benz's had many of her wardrobe items available in both her size and one size larger so she could wear multiple layers and heat packs underneath her wardrobe.[6]
  • Amanda's iconic outfit of a leather jacket and a side braid was how Julie Benz wanted Amanda to appear. When Julie was on the tv show Dexter, she frequently pushed for her character to be allowed to wear braids. Additionally, although Julie enjoyed playing Amanda and appreciated not having to wear prosthetics or alien makeup, if she had to play an alien she said, "I would like to play Irisa. I like her, especially now that she put some braids in her hair. It’s more fitting for me!"[7]
  • "Julie Benz asked the prop department to put cayenne pepper in the tea that stands in for whiskey in her scenes, because she likes the sting of it and her reaction gives the scene more reality." -Michael Nankin, Producer/Director.[8]


Marsh: I would hate to see this town torn apart by alien barbarians.
Amanda: We're pretty good with alien barbarians. It's kind of our thing. -Past Is Prologue

Look, I know what it's like to have power, and I know what it's like to not have power. Having it is better. -In My Secret Life

But this was St. Louis. And today it's Defiance. And tomorrow it could be something else. But it'll always be our home. And we have to do whatever it takes to protect it from anything or anyone that threatens it. -In My Secret Life

Anything you have, anything worthwhile, there is someone out there who will take it from you. So you have to fight, or you're gonna end up with nothing. I had a guy. He was with my sister, so he was off-limits. But she kicked him aside. And I could have told him how I felt. But I didn't. I didn't fight. Don't make the same mistake. -Doll Parts

Don't thank me. Thank your husband. Oh, you can't. He's dead. -Ostinato In White

Well, you're smart. You can figure it out. Sweet-talk him. Wiggle your fanny. I don't give a crap. Just get it done. -When Twilight Dims the Sky Above

I give everyone a fair chance. -Upon the March We Fittest Die

Amanda: You're so full of shit.
Nolan: Undeniably. And yet, throughout it all, you remain optimistic.
Amanda: I do. -Upon the March We Fittest Die