In Season 1 Episode 5 of 12 Monkeys, Jennifer is being interrogated for information. We know from a previous scene they are willing to do physical torture, but here they use, first, the threat of a rat on the face, and then second, deliberately put this insect on her chest.

We never find out what the insect is, or what it was for. Does anybody know?

enter image description here

  • One assumes the "what it was for" part was "to scare her." – Steve-O Dec 29 '17 at 15:49
  • @Steve-O Is it a scary insect then? Some kind of biting / stinging species? – Stewart Dec 29 '17 at 15:55
  • I don't know the specific species. I don't think that really matters, though. I think they were operating primarily on the "most people find bugs gross/scary" principle. – Steve-O Dec 29 '17 at 15:58
  • @Steve-O Compared with a rat, and sticks under the fingernails? And given the underplayed manner in which they placed it on her? I barely noticed and had to rewind to see it properly. – Stewart Dec 29 '17 at 16:00

Here's the scene (you see it at 1:38 min):

It's not an insect, it's an arachnid. To be more exact, it belongs to the arachnid order amblypygi, also known as whip spiders or tailless whip scorpions (not to be confused with whip scorpions).

They have these characteristic long pedipalps, but unlike whip scorpions, no tail. Here's a picture from wikipedia, taken by Thomas Brown and uploaded by mgiganteus.

enter image description here

If you conduct a google image search, you'll find many more pictures, e. g.

(I can't embed them directly due to copyright issues).

As for why they did that - probably to scare her into revealing the information. They look unusual and scary, especially the pedipalps. They are also relatively large for an invertebrate, but they are actually harmless to humans (see the wikipedia article).

  • Thank you. I was expecting it to have some special role in the plot, much like the ear-brain-worm things in Wrath of Kahn; and then when nothing happened I was like, "What was that all about?" – Stewart Feb 4 '19 at 8:11

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