Third-episode verdict: Continuum (Showcase)

The CarusometerA Carusometer rating of 3

In Canada: Sundays, 9pm ET/PT, Showcase
In the UK: Not yet acquired

Three episodes into Continuum and I think I’m going to recommend it. Despite the somewhat derivative nature of the show – it’s Time Trax with a female protagonist, fighting against the evil version of Blakes 7 – it has a lot going for it.

As mentioned in my review of the first episode, it does a good job of depicting a futuristic future (as opposed to the likes of Terra Nova, which merely show a future, but not one that suggests society has changed), there’s an interesting moral ambivalence with the heroine fighting for the rights of evil corporations, the baddies fighting for the oppressed individual, and there are some really very good action scenes, too.

A little of the lustre has gone, most of the budget having been spent on the first episode by the looks of it, so although we do pleasingly maintain the occasional flash-forward to the future, it’s a future that’s mainly in dark basements that don’t cost a lot. We’ve also lost contact with the future characters, such as Rachel Nichols’ husband and William B Davis (aka The X-Files’ Cigarette-Smoking Man), who presented an opportunity for a more nuanced show, rather than the more police procedural, present-day show that we’re starting to get. And Nichols’ catsuit is becoming something of a sonic screwdriver, as is her Jesse Eisenberg-alike helper monkey, who can crack any IT system, no matter how secure.

All the same, we are also gaining a few things. There are some interesting twists involving the bad guys, who aren’t one block of people but a conflicted bunch who don’t all agree on political methodologies. Supporting hunk Victor Webster is getting some characterisation, fleshing him out into an almost interesting sidekick, which might present some interesting romantic issues for Nichols’ character if she believes she can no longer get back to her family.

On the whole, although it’s not the most original of shows, it’s a pretty intelligent, well-made SF-action series, with well-rounded characters, a decent cast, some original ideas of its own as well as a few surprises. It has an ongoing plot to keep you interested and you never know exactly where it’s going. Give it a try if you can.

Carusometer rating: 3
Rob’s prediction: Should last at least two seasons, maybe more

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