Apex Legends developer Respawn Entertainment released the latest episode of Stories From The Outlands earlier this week, taking social media by storm. Entitled “Family Business,” the episode gives players a run-down of Lifeline and Octane‘s teenage-troublemaker years and a glimpse of what their relationships with their parents were like before the two legends joined Apex Games.
But while most of the discourse regarding the new episode revolves around Lifeline’s terrible ex-boyfriend and the fact that fans finally got to see what Octane looks like under his mask, there are plenty of easily-missed secrets tucked away in the eight-minute episode. Here’s a closer look at some of the little details you may have missed in Stories From The Outlands: Family Business.
1. The Tone Zone
In the episode’s opening scene, once Lifeline has ended the phone call with her mother, she begins playing a song called “One Weapon A Day” by The Flyer Liars, the punk band Lifeline joined after leaving her family. A closer look at the screen reveals the app playing the music is called Tone Zone. “Tone” is obviously a reference to musical notes, but it’s also a reference to Titanfall 2. Titanfall 2 preceded Apex Legends, and the events of Apex take place in the Titanfall universe.
Tone is also the name of a specific kind of Titan players can pilot in Titanfall 2, so the fact that the Outlands’ version of Spotify references this Titan is almost certainly intentional. Speaking of Spotify, you can actually listen to Lifeline’s band there. “One Weapon A Day” has been uploaded to the music streaming service, though the track is simply called “Lifeline” instead.
2. Ulterior Motives
Shortly after breaking into the Silva Pharmaceuticals facility, Lifeline and Octane are caught by security. But while Lifeline was busy swiping the medicine needed to restock the Frontier Corps, Octane was solely focused on looting as much Stim as he could hold. When caught by security, Octane puts his hands up, and all of the Stim hits the ground, shattering and leaving behind a pool of green liquid.
But Octavio somehow managed to snag some Stim anyway–once they’re back at the Frontier Corps hospital, the medicine locker near the bed where Lifeline’s ex was staying before he left her can be seen behind Octane. The once-empty locker is now stocked entirely with Stim from floor to ceiling. The scene ends with Octane asking Lifeline “What are we going to do the next time you run out?”
As excited as Octane was to hear from Lifeline after she left home, it’s possible his enthusiasm for the medication heist was partially tied to his crippling Stim addiction, not the desire to help a friend in need. In the future, once Octane has blown off his legs, he lies to Lifeline in a bid to get himself placed at the top of the list for artificial limb installation. Lifeline falls for Octane’s manipulation and forges an order for new legs, putting her career at risk in the process. She is furious when she realizes she’s been taken advantage of.
3. Mortal Kombat
When Octane is caught by Silva Pharmaceutical’s Security team, Lifeline quickly uses her DOC drone to electrocute one of the guards, resulting in several x-ray frames similar to those used in the Mortal Kombat series.
Lifeline’s guard takedown is also incredibly similar to Raiden’s electrifying finisher in the Mortal Kombat series, and is likely an intentional reference.
4. A Broken Family Portrait
Shortly before the new episode was released on YouTube, Respawn’s lead animator Moy Parra tweeted out a family portrait of a young Lifeline and her parents, Cherisse and Darion Che. While both parents look equally miserable in the photo, Darion may not be as monstrous as Cherisse. He is notably absent from the scene in which Lifeline and Octane’s parents come looking for them, fully prepared to use lethal force.
On the topic of lethal force, Season 7’s Family Portrait quest–which also focused on Octane and Lifeline–introduced Darion and Cherisse Che for the first time. Lifeline’s parents pull her in for a hug when they see her, and while her father remains silent, Lifeline’s mother whispers, “Look happy, or I gut your precious Frontier Corps and leave them scrambling for spare change. Now hug me back.” It seems Cherisse has been attempting to hold the Frontier Corps hostage for years as a way to manipulate her daughter into following orders.
Moments later, Lifeline is seen speaking to her father, and while the conversation is tense, it isn’t abusive. Meanwhile, Cherisse stands behind her daughter, appraising Lifeline’s stunning evening gown before declaring that she looks “like you work on a street corner.”
In the same scene, when Lifeline is threatened by a terrorist, Darion is willing to sacrifice the lives of innocent bystanders, but draws the line at his daughter, desperately trying to convince her to to come with him and claiming it will be suicide if she chooses to stay. Cherisse, however, appears completely ambivalent to her daughter’s impending murder.
It seems that Lifeline may actually have a good relationship with her father–or a healthier relationship than the one she has with her mother, at least. She has fond memories of baking cookies with her Darion (Cherisse is not mentioned), as described in the ‘Pass Me Dat Suga’ Cookies transition screen, which provides the recipe for Lifeline and Darion’s sugar cookies. It appears that Cherisse is the main source of familial strife, so it makes sense that Darion didn’t tag along to threaten his daughter with Cherisse and Octane’s grandfather, Torres Silva, when they arrived at the Frontier Corps looking for Lifeline.
5. Whole Lot of Text Messages
Once Lifeline realizes she needs Octane’s help to obtain the medication needed to heal her then-boyfriend’s wounds, we catch a glimpse of her phone. In the time since she left her family, Octane has texted her 89 times, according to her unread message count. The messages paint a portrait of a very lonely Octane who seems like he doesn’t know what to do with him when Lifeline isn’t around.
When she calls to request his help, Octane refers to her as “mi tortuga,” Spanish for “my dear.” Though it may just be an innocent term of endearment, it does stick out a bit–we’ve certainly never heard Octane aim that phrase in anyone else’s direction. This, combined with Lifeline’s palpable jealousy when Octane is forced to go on a date with a Hammond Robotics employee in Season 5 (for strictly-tactical reasons) seems to point to a potential romance between the two Legends.
BONUS: Writing On the Walls
In the first seconds of the episode, Lifeline steps into a heavily graffitied train. As she speaks to Cherisse on the phone, some interesting writing can be seen on the windows. It appears that Rampart has also taken this train, as “I <3 Sheila” can be seen written on the window of the door to the right. Sheila, of course, is Rampart’s beloved weapon of choice, meaning Rampart is the culprit behind the graffiti.
But beneath Rampart’s words, in distinctly different handwriting, is an additional message: “Big Sister is watching.”
Big Sister is the name of the mysterious gang that attacked Rampart and burned her business to the ground, forcing her to open up shop in Mirage’s bar. Given the fact that this episode of Stories From The Outlands is set far enough in the past that Octane still has his organic legs, the foreboding message implies that Big Sister has spent years hassling Rampart, and suggests the gang may not be done with her yet. Luckily, Lifeline and her healing drone will be there to patch Ramya up should her enemies strike once more.
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