Continuum 2.01 "Second Chances" TV REVIEW
Writer: Simon Barry
Director: Pat Williams
THE ONE WHERE One week after the bombing: Kiera's working on her own (with some help from Carlos); Agent Gardiner is on her trail; Travis has survived after Sonya shot him; Alec has moved out of home and is trying to come to terms with his future; and Vancouver's Mayor is assassinated.
VERDICT As slick and intelligent as always, Continuum opens season two with a cracking episode. From the opening scenes of Future-Kiera having a nightmare of being locked in a glass cell (what's all that about, eh?) to Travis being shocked into life again and then going on a screaming kill-spree, this episode doesn't ease you gently into year two. Not that we were expecting that, of course, but it's nice to see proof that the show's still on top form.
Two things really stand out about “Second Chances”. First is the, “Well, I didn't expect that to happen,” suddenness of the poor Mayor's death, which knocks you for six. The second is the way that Kiera has become a vigilante, eschewing the way she used to work closely with the police to instead do her own thing. What's amazing is that both Fonnegra and Inspector Dillon are supportive of her as she does this: a tough call, given that they're both under pressure, but clearly she's proved herself over and over to them.
It'll be fascinating to see where things go with Nicholas Lea's Agent Gardiner, who now has a personal vendetta against Kiera because he saw her use her invisibility suit with his own eyes. Hilariously, she actually tells him that she's a time traveller straight away, but of course he doesn't believe her. Will he pursue her now, rather like McGee used to follow around David Banner in The Incredible Hulk TV show? Time will tell... but more Lea on this show is never a bad thing in our book.
THERE'S GRATITUDE FOR YOU A medical team tries desperately to bring Travis back to life after his shooting, but it's not until his heart jumpstarts itself (he's some kind of super-human cyborg-thing, remember) that he wakes up... and he then promptly starts killing them all. The poor guys were only doing their job! This is why Travis is a baddie, naturally.
DID THEY OR DIDN'T THEY? The relationship between Kiera and Kellog is fascinating, because the writers – tricky buggers – still aren't revealing whether they've slept together, or whether Kiera is just using Kellog. Personally I think they have, but who knows? Kiera keeps denying it, but all evidence points to the contrary. His endless flirtation, and the way she keeps coming back to him (even staying with him after the bombing), implies that these two have many secrets. I bet they're not playing Monopoly in that boat together...
COOL TECH As always, today's law enforcement would probably kill their own grannies to have access to Kiera's technology. She uses her CMR chip to determine where the shooter was in a matter of seconds, and it also comes in handy when she figures out if a suspect is lying. She also uses her very own sonic screwdriver device to open locks. And yes, the FX are still as cool as ever.
WHAT? THERE'S NO BATMAN IN 2077? “Wait for my signal,” Kiera tells Carlos. “Is it going to be a big bat projected into the night sky?” he replies. She's absolutely baffled. Poor Batman, so lost and forgotten by our very own descendants... Shocking.
FAMILY MATTERS Please pardon our French here, but Alec is a dick. His mother comes to visit him in his new home and not only does he not invite her upstairs to his room, he takes her outside to talk to her, as though he's scared that she'll sully his new pad. Worse, she's grieving for her husband, and he sends her away with a measly, “Maybe we could have coffee sometime?” Later he seems to realise what he's done and calls himself an asshole, but still. What a meanie. Hopefully he'll man up soon – he's still in shock, after all.
IS IT JUST US, OR...? Did it look vaguely suspicious when Kiera's hubby looked out of their window at the ship in the sky containing old Alec? As though he knew Kiera's nightmare had been triggered by him? Hmm.
SPOILER! Obviously a little, “Previously on Continuum ” was needed so that we could all reacquaint ourselves with this world, but it also meant that anyone with half a brain could have seen Tahmoh Penikett's politician Jim Martin pop up and then make the connection to the Mayor's death and suss out that he was behind it. Oh well.
Old Alec to Young Alec: “Only you can prevent this future from happening.” (No pressure, then.)