First Contact is the first episode of the first season of Cleverman. It aired on June 2nd, 2016 on the ABC, and June 1st, 2016 on Sundance TV.
A gang of young men approach a woman sitting alone on a bus, intimidating her until they realise she is a "hairy". As they alert the bus driver, she displays strong fingernails and superhuman strength as she fights them off and then exits the bus.
The incident is widely reported, ignoring the men's behaviour and focussing instead on the evidence of hairies travelling outside The Zone, where they are meant to stay. Addressing the media, the Minister for Immigration and Border Control Geoffrey Matthews announces a crackdown on out-of-bounds hairies, and increased rewards for information leading to their capture.
Koen West and his friend Blair enter the Zone late at night to meet with a group of hairies: Araluen and Boondee, along with their children Djukara, Latani and Jyra. Koen and Blair smuggle the family to an apartment outside the Zone in exchange for money. The pair return to the bar they are financing with this operation; Blair objects to the second part of the plan, worried about the kids. Koen assures him they'll be better off in detention, and reports the family to the Containment Authority to claim the reward money.
Meanwhile Waruu West has stayed overnight with TV reporter Belinda Frosche, with whom he is having an affair. Her boss Jarrod Slade has been tipped off about the raid about to happen on Araluen and Boondee's family, and she's being sent to cover it. Waruu is unimpressed and makes a curt exit, bringing needed medical supplies to Dr. Charlotte Cleary, who has recently begun running a clinic in the Zone.
Latani is telling Jyra stories about the traditional life of the hairy people when the Containment Authority raid the family’s apartment. Araluen pushes Latani and Jyra into a bedroom to hide, but only Latani escapes capture. Outside, in front of a crowd of onlookers and Belinda's news crew, violence breaks out when the CA officers try to separate the women and children and Araluen is hit with a taser. Despite Boondee's warnings, Djukara breaks his bonds and overpowers several of the officers to protect her. One of them tries to shoot him but misses and kills Jyra. It's all captured on film.
Minister Matthews calls Slade, trying to kill the story, but Slade calls his bluff on threats to cancel his broadcasting license as his government was elected on a platform of transparency. The story goes to air; Waruu watches it at home with his wife Nerida, daughter Alinta and right-hand-man from the zone, Harry. Harry complains about Waruu’s failure to solve the Zone’s overcrowding crisis. Also watching are Latani, alone in the now-empty apartment, and Koen, Blair and Blair's girlfriend Ash. The latter two are horrified, but Koen is unrepentant.
Later, Koen’s elderly Uncle Jimmy arrives at the bar unexpectedly with a large bag. Koen reluctantly talks to him, accepting a short club which Jimmy says Koen’s father would have wanted him to have. Jimmy also tells Koen it's time to decide which tribe he belongs to. Jimmy also visits Waruu in the Zone, telling him Koen is going to need his help, but Waruu tells him to come back later as he's busy with a dispute between a large hairy, Maliyan, and a group of humans. It's resolved through a public fight which Maliyan wins easily; during the fight, Jimmy whispers something to Alinta and leaves. Waruu gives a rousing speech reminding the crowd that the government is the common enemy of inhabitants of the Zone, hairies and humans alike.
Jimmy meets Slade at a remote beach location, receiving a large sum of money from Slade. In return, he promises to give Slade "the spirit", but he's now finished with their dealings - Slade will have to find himself a new Cleverman. Afterwards Jimmy heads to a mysterious morgue where he breathes into the fresh corpse of a young woman, which begins to thaw. He then returns to the beach and burns a crow on a bonfire while reciting an incantation. A shooting star appears in the sky and splashes into the ocean. Jimmy continues to chant and smiles as he bares his chest; something in the water swims rapidly toward him and attacks with a sickening crunch. Jimmy's blue eye goes glassy as he dies.
At the same time, Koen and Ash are secretly having sex in the back of the bar when Koen inexplicably faints. Blair finds them but doesn't know what they were up to; he helps Koen up, and notices something weird is going on with one of Koen's eyes, but Koen recovers and shakes it off.
Djukara is shipped off by the Containment Authority in a sealed truck, where he meets two of the other hairies being transported, Mungo and Kulya. They are delivered to a containment facility where they are treated inhumanely, especially by the vicious guard Dickson, who forces them to bend over a table as he brands their necks.
Nerida gets a call about Uncle Jimmy and accompanies Waruu when he goes to identify the body. Jimmy's chest is torn open and his heart is missing, which Waruu recognises as the work of the Namorrodor, a creature which appears in times of cosmic imbalance and eats human hearts. Nerida thinks it's just a story, but Waruu suggests it's something more, and remembers drawing pictures of the creature as a boy. Back home, he tries to comfort Alinta, and asks what Jimmy told her; she says he told her the story of how the Sky had to choose between his sons, the Sun and the Moon, when passing on his power, and chose the Sun. Waruu later gazes up at the Moon and muses bitterly: "No way am I the Moon."
Harry discovers that Koen was the smuggler who reported Jyra’s family, and he and Waruu visit Koen's bar after hours to have words. Koen gives Harry the middle finger, and Harry - revealed as a "shaver" - tears Koen’s finger off. They leave, Waruu warning Koen that if he tries it again, next time he’ll be killed. Blair and Ash come downstairs as they hear Koen's screams, but as he holds the finger to his hander it reattaches itself and and soon is completely healed. Amazed, Koen cuts himself with a knife from the bar and all three watch as the wound closes in front of them. They also notice Koen's left eye: it has turned completely blue.
The next day, at Jimmy’s funeral, Waruu gives a eulogy praising Jimmy as a great Cleverman who always looked after his mob, declaring that he will carry on Jimmy’s legacy as the next in his line. He’s surprised to spot Koen in the crowd, and even more surprised when Koen removes his shades to reveal his blue eye and flips Waruu off with his uninjured finger.
Back in the morgue, the corpse of the young woman opens it eyes and a voice whispers: "Ngaluunggirr..."