Tonight Showcase brings us its summer sci-fi show Continuum, scheduled to run for 10 episodes, it tells the story of a group of terrorists as well as protector (read as police officer) from the year 2077 who get thrown back in time to 2012 Vancouver. The terrorists are planning to use this escape to bring about their revolution and change the future, the protector wants to stop them, and see if they know how to send her home.
That broad stroke may give you the general idea of the show, but it’s the subtleties that make it truly enjoyable. The best sci-fi shows use their forum to not only to entertain but to educate, inspire, and make you think.
Will Continuum do all these things?
It’s tough to say, it has done two of those things for me already, which is entertain and make me think, and I like it very much. Unless they drop the ball drastically over the next 9 episodes, they’ve got me hooked, because I really want to see where the series goes!
BEWARE SPOILERS BELOW!!
In the opening moments we learn that the terrorist group Liber8 led by Kagame (Tony Amendola) are fighting for a return to democracy, the governments fell and were bailed out by corporations who know run everything (wait don’t they do that now?) and set off a series of explosions, just as a number of them are seized.
City Protection Services Kiera Cameron (Rachel Nichols) is assigned to stand over their execution, but we are first introduced to her in her home, where we meet her friends, her husband, and her son. Moments later though, she shows she can kick ass when she stops a couple of perps on the way to the execution. (It also had a really bad line when she delivers a moment of advice to the perps before leaving).
First off, I dig the suit she wears, yes, it’s form-fitting (I’m ok with that because Rachel looks great in it!) but it has all kinds of tech built into it, interfaces, camouflage, and body armor.
At the last moment, Kiera is assigned to be in the execution room, while genre fans will recognize a very familiar face that Kiera’s husband Greg (John Reardon) is talking to, which, the more we see and learn we realize that there’s a plan behind that.
She attempts to stop the group from assembling a device, but too late, in a blinding flare of light, she wakes in the past.
Seeing a couple of the prisoners fleeing the scene she takes off in pursuit of one named Ingram with the assistance of young Alec Sadler (Erik Knudsen), who she can hear over her coms, and she learns what’s happened – she’s been time-jumped through a vortex back to 2012 Vancouver.
Told by the prisoner she is pursuing that there is no way back, Kiera is left with nothing but the desire to catch the 7 remaining escapees and find a way home.
When we join the rest of the escapees, Travis (Richard Cross) has taken charge, and they say that Kagame didn’t make it back, but he trades a look with Sonya (Lexa Doig) which seems to imply there’s something else going on there. In the meantime they and their fellows start gathering up weapons and materiel to begin their new revolution.
Alec and Kiera get to know one another over the net com they use, which we learn he created!
As she gets settled into 2012, there are a couple of moments I really love, Kiera smelling the soap, like she’d never seen or held a bar of soap before, and looking at running water with a look of awe on her face. It makes you wonder what things are like in the future – and simple things like, how do they look after their hygiene there? Don’t they have running water? Maybe they have sonic showers?
We also get a brief look at Alec’s home life, and some of that seems a little odd too… His stepfather and brother seem to have something on the go, saying he’s not ready… Put in the context of the scene it’s kind of suspicious, because they are talking about rogue traders and evil CEOs.
Looking for clues, Kiera returns to the scene of the time-jump and meets Carlos (Victor Webster) who works under the assumption, that Kiera lets him go with, that she is a fellow cop., supplying him with a name she heard from the television.
Once there Kiera interviews Ingram, who tells her that it’s a one-way ticket, and that she’s stuck here. He warns her to stay out of their way, but she uses Alec to trace down Ingram’s family, and he decides to share information.
She warns Carlos and his boss what to expect from these escapees, which is intercut with all of it already happening with brutal violence.
Before they can investigate her claims to be a cop any further, things go sideways, and she gets pulled in to helping them, as the terrorists actions escalate to include bank robberies, which she believes are distractions. So I’m willing to bet that will come back at some point and bite her on the ass, can’t wait to see the fallout from THAT!
Kiera and Carlos track down some of the escapees and get trapped in a firefight. She confides in Alec about a parcel she’s got stowed in a vent in her hotel room that should convince people she’s telling the truth, but then realizes that the bank robbery itself was a diversion…
Which leads to the stunning conclusion of the episode for both Kiera and Carlos and a revelation about Alec.
I like the cast very much, and will look forward to see how the story and character develops as we get get into the season.
I think Rachel Nichols is a sexy, and kick ass leading lady, and she is surrounded by a strong genre-based cast who are already bringing their characters to life.
The pacing, and story-telling work, because as the end of the first episode rolled around I was upset that I didn’t have the next episode ready to go already. That for me is always a good sign, and hopefully they maintain the balance between sci-fi and cop show. They’ve shown they can do it so far, so I’ll be eagerly awaiting the next installment!
The show works on the surface as a straight forward sci-fi show, but it’s the questions under it that are going to be very captivating… How does their version of time travel work? If they came back can’t others? There’s the ethics of using future knowledge… The fact that these terrorists, Liber8 are fighting to restore democracy… Kiera isn’t a bad person, and she just wants to get home, sure corporate governments are all she’s ever known, but is she on the wrong side of the fight, or is that just our perspective?…Are Alec’s stepfather and stepbrother involved, how recent was the marriage between his mother and the stepfather, are they from the future there to make sure that Alec gains some notoriety and power?…What’s going to happen when Carlos learns Kiera isn’t a cop, and is in fact from the future? Is it really a one-way trip, or will Kiera find a way home? And where is Kagame?
Continuum begins tonight on Showcase!
How far would you go to save the future?