|Books character||TV character|
Clarissa is the oldest daughter of Jules-Pierre Mao, responsible for organizing events in her family's honor. Prior to the beginning of the series, she had a falling out with her younger sister, Julie, causing the latter to leave Earth for the Belt.
Throughout the seriesEdit
In "Here There Be Dragons", Sadavir Errinwright approaches Chrisjen Avasarala with the knowledge that by using Jules-Pierre Mao’s daughter Clarissa as a conduit for leverage, they may be able to flush him out and get him to reveal what he knows about the protomolecule. Avasarala, however, changes the subject of discussion to the fallout of Errinwright's partnership with Jules-Pierre Mao.
Alter Ego: Melba KohEdit
In "Delta-V", Clarissa is shown to be living under the alias of Melba Koh and working as a repair technician for Savage Industries, who have been contracted by the United Nations Navy to perform repair work on the fleet headed to the Sol Ring.
Whilst aboard the UNN Seung Un, she is seen rigging an explosive device behind a panel when left unattended by her colleagues. However, the device is later discovered by fellow technician Ren. Despite his offers to not tell and help her cover it up if she removes the device, she refuses. Knowing Ren will try and stop her, she activates an implant in her mouth that releases a large amount of adrenaline, allowing her to pick up and slam her colleague's head into the wall, killing him. Exhausted from the huge physical exertion, she collapses next to his corpse.
During "It Reaches Out", Clarissa is still using her false identity of Melba. She privately accesses her hand terminal to remotely detonate the explosives aboard the Seung Un then activates transmission of a message of apparently James Holden claiming responsibility for the Seung Un in the name of the OPA and further claiming all rights to the Ring.
Through a series of flashbacks in "Intransigence", the true identity of Melba Koh is revealed as Clarissa Mao. A contentious relationship between sisters and their father is shown to be a personality-defining trigger for Clarissa. Tilly Fagan is shown to be an acquaintance of the Mao family.
In "Dandelion Sky", Clarissa is recognized by her old acquaintance, Tilly Fagan. Tilly eventually confronts Clarissa as she prepares to leave the Thomas Prince and pleads with her to no avail. As they fight, the Thomas Prince is suddenly stopped by the Ring Station's defense mechanism. Tilly is impaled on a piece of pipe while Clarissa escapes.
In "Fallen World", Clarissa survives the sudden stop, albeit with a broken arm. After meeting Anna Volovodov in the med bay, Clarissa steals an exosuit and once again prepares to leave the Thomas Prince. Anna pleads with her not to leave, having learned the truth from a dying Tilly, but her cries fall on deaf ears. Clarissa arrives at the Rocinante and searches for James Holden, but he is nowhere to be found. She ambushes Naomi Nagata in the cargo bay, demanding Holden's whereabouts. Before Clarissa can kill her, however, she is incapacitated by Anna.
In "Congregation", Clarissa is captured and given a suppressor to prevent her from using her implant. Amos Burton suggests killing her on the spot, but Anna and Naomi advise against it due to her role in framing Holden. Brought aboard the Behemoth, she is placed in a holding cell. Ironically, James Holden is in the cell across from her.
In "Abaddon's Gate", Clarissa overhears Holden's conversation with The Investigator. She is later released due to her engineering experience and assigned to the bridge. Here, she meets Acting Captain Klaes Ashford, who kindly deactivates her suppressor. When Holden and company arrive at the bridge and explain themselves, Clarissa has a change of heart. Activating her implant, she manages to incapacitate Ashford and deactivate the Behemoth's comm laser, saving everyone and opening the doors to other worlds.
- "Here There Be Dragons" (mentioned)
- "Delta-V" (as "Melba Koh")
- "It Reaches Out" (as "Melba Koh")
- "Dandelion Sky"
- "Fallen World"
- "Abaddon's Gate"
- In the novels, Clarissa is younger than Julie. In the show, the birth order of the sisters may be rearranged between the novels and the TV show. In "Here There Be Dragons", Errinwright mentioned that Clarissa is the eldest. It may have been conditional/contextual considering, at the time, Julie Mao was deceased.