The Bionic Woman goes a’time travelling . . .

This week saw the premiere of the new science fiction series Continuum on Canada’s Showcase network. (The series is not is being shown on any network in the US.)

Things look bright from the purely numbers side of things: the show reached an estimated total of 1.7 million viewers – surely nothing to sneeze at! With sci-fi shows such as Alcatraz and Terra Nova – to mention only two notable examples – dropping dead left, right and center all over the place this year genre fans must be suffering from withdrawal symptoms.

The question is however whether Continuum, which features many familiar faces from previous sci-fi shows, will manage to attract the same number of viewers to tune in for the next episode.

We’re not too convinced. Continuum is off to a shaky start to be honest. We’ll give the show a few more episodes since serial TV shows such as these take a few episodes to get off the ground, but until then the jury are out on the series.

It is the year 2077. Multinational corporations now run things after they saved governments from economic meltdown and ruin following a global recession. The corporations also got rid of things such as democracy. After all, capitalism doesn’t really need democracy, now does it? In protest a group of radical terrorists blows up the “Corporate Congress” building resulting in thousands of civilian deaths.

The terrorists are captured and sentenced to public televised execution. However they manage to escape by dramatically jumping back in time to Vancouver in 2012. A bionically- enhanced cop named Kiera Cameron (Alias’ Rachel Nichols) inadvertently jumps back in time with them. Now it is up to Kiera to stop the group from wreaking havoc in the past, or rather our present . . .

The pilot is riddled with plot holes and missed opportunities.

Vancouver police are a trusting lot it seems and quickly accept that Kiera is indeed a cop from another division without her so much as flashing a badge once.

The movie jumps right into the action and does little to flesh out Kiera’s future world. Time travel stories have a lot of scope for some fish out of water shenanigans, but Continuum doesn’t seem to be interested in any of this. Instead Kiera adapts quite easily to life sixty years in the past and even manages to steal some cash to rent a hotel room from an ATM using her future tech.

There is some moral ambiguity: Kiera is dedicated to protecting her future world’s political status quo, but, hey, unless you happen to be the CEO of Nike the idea of a world in which corporations own everything isn’t particularly appealing. No doubt Kiera might try to change her future from happening, but her terrorist protagonists are such unambiguous baddies who have no qualms about blowing up civilians and slitting cops’ throats that they might as well be caricatures. Some more shades of grey would have made things more interesting. Is Kiera doing the right thing stopping them?

But it is still early days. Perhaps Continuum will address these issues as well as flesh out its time travel plot lines (we’re always suckers for a good time paradox). We’ll see.

This pilot episode seemed too eager to set up its premise and jump right into the action and become a standard cop show in which a law enforcement official and her partner track down some bad guys. With the same set of villains each week Kiera’s task might become annoyingly Sisyphean in the way that Shredder always managed to flee the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to face them again in the next episode – for all eternity!

It’s doubtful whether the premise behind Continuum has “legs” as they say in the industry. The story idea seems strong enough for a mini-series but not necessarily a new TV series.

In short
Some good, some bad.  The time travel aspect is intriguing but the Bionic Woman action stuff not so much. We’ll just have to see what future episodes bring.

 

 

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Category: Reviews, TV

About the Author

James has been running The Sci-Fi Movie Page since Before the Beginning of Time Itself (TM), i.e. since the site's inception in 1997. In addition to sci-fi James also likes 1970s motorbikes and chili dogs although he doesn't own the former and no longer eats the latter. He currently resides in Kiev, Ukraine for reasons best left unexplained.

  • jdr458

    My Peoples, my Sci-Fi loving peoples, TV Sci-Fi is doomed to mediocrity. Really good TV shows of any kind are not good for business, that is advertising business. Good shows distracts you,which is a good thing but really good shows distracts you during commercials. You don’t think much about mediocre shows during commercials leaving your mind open to commercial influence but not so with really good TV shows. you are engrossed in thought and talk about the experience during breaks.  Friends, Netflix has a plan that we should support and that is to produce shows without commercial support.  We hatted them for raising prices so much that we were unable to see that the price was way way below the alternatives.  OK! there is much that is new that is not on Netflix but really, if I haven’t seen it is still new, for at lease the first ten years after it’s release.  Cable TV is akin to an Out House during the era of inside plumbing.

    Cable TV compared to Streaming video over Broadband is like a comparison of a bum jumping a ride on a box car to a driving a car.  amenities abound, parking, schedual, comfort of every sort, and for $8 a month, not $50+.  Don’t get me wrong, Netflix is just another western company that when they get the prescribes number of us (Cash Cows) hooked on there service they will pimp as well, but we should use them to kill the redundant cable that want to charge us ridiculous amounts per showing.

    Many of the TV show we like that started to wane was because the advertisers influenced the writers into mediocrity.

    We should all write Netflix and tell them what shows we want them to produce.  They are thinking about Jericho and Arrested Development but I am thinking of them to revive Babalon 5, Star Gate & Star Trek.

    As far as Star Trek
    Star
    Trek is not dead but has extended beyond the abilities of the
    Federation to fit into good stories. The federation also is not dead
    but should no longer confine the story. The Federation is an integral part of Star Trek and is always a support of the story, not
    a confining entity like a specific crew. Chaotic is the new Star Trek
    crew, sporadic jumps from on crew to another yet with a unison,
    Curzon Dax (In a Male) & Benjamin Cisco as cargo runners and all
    out adventures and explorers. They run cargo to finance
    exploration, to find answers to questions that captured them as
    officers of the federation, questions like the bullets below.
    Finding parts from the wreckage the two defiant class ships that were destroyed and with the help of Federation and others friends he
    rebuilds a somewhat defiant like ship, better in some ways not in
    others. Curzon wants?? Worf is the leader of the new nation of
    Klingons and has very mixed ideas of what to do about Curzon. He vehemently wants him dead and also charish his opinion and friendship
    at times. Kira wants to free Riker as she promised, and also love
    him and so hires Cisco and Curzon to help free him from Cardassian
    prison. 7 marries Chakotay but latter wants to free her parents from
    the Borg and so the two of them take command of a Borg ship (with
    transwarp conduit intact) with freed Borg as there crew. They have
    adventure acquiring supplies and getting the ship and crew ready for
    the journey to the Delta quadrant. Many ships hear of the trip to the
    Delta quadrant and join, including Dax & Cisco, Riker wanting to
    flee Federation judgment, Kira and odo in a last minute appearance
    with some changeling friends that changed their whole attitude about
    everything drastically after their defeat and most importantly after
    his being in the great sea a while.

    Too
    many stories are left unanswered

    Dr.
    Moriarty

    Tin
    Man

    Riker
    2 in Cardasian prison (Kira?)

    7s
    parents

    Village
    of Drones out of the collective

    Adult
    Wesly Crusher

    Dr.
    Soones old age child, part human part android, in stasis
    underground on the planet where Dr. Soone died till a specific cure
    has been developed. The emotion chip has instruction that will
    inform Data when he got info on the cure, not to take control of him
    to resurrect the boy and care for him.

    There
    are many many more stories to tell these are but a few off the top of
    my head (not the best) to consider. I am not a Trekkie just a man
    with a mental condition that requires the store to continue. Doctors
    Orders.

    I
    jotted this all down in a moment but I can refine it if I knew I had
    a CONNECTED EAR. I think that I got something that makes a
    difference, as with all Trekkies and admirers.

    Sincerely

    Jerome
    D. Robinson

    JDR458@Hotmail.com

    623-329-8173

  • http://meta-global.blogspot.com AMeshiea

    Actually Capitalism works best with democracy, so your conception of it is already completely off. Free markets require as much freedom in every aspect of life to function to the maximum benefit of of its citizens. The idea that capitalism thrives without democracy is corporatism and not capitalism.

    Try reading Von-Mises, the basic theoretician of Capitalism and how it functions in a free society.

    Its okay most people have no clue.

  • TWong

     You’re probably right that the economic concept of capitalism works best with political government of democracy; However, have you looked at today’s society. China, the country that essentially owns America, is a communist government run by production capitalists. You don’t need democracy to have successful capitalism. The only difference is that in a democracy, the corporations use lobbyists, whereas in communism, the corporations use bribes.

  • alexander

    as i see it the pilot episode from continuum is probably the worst by quality from the first season and the series gets better as the episode go on, i watch series a lot and i m pretty certain from what i saw in first season that this show is quite ok, atleast ok like some other shows that have 4+ seasons made like dexter,castle and have good number of views in usa. probably the only mistake is that the show isnt shown in usa too. so i find your review to be too criticizing and say that this show has the potential to become a series with atleast 4 seasons caz there are things in movies that people like us see that stupid americans etc. cant.

  • http://www.facebook.com/AndreasPille7 Andreas Pille

    it is a very good series and i hope they will make a second season

  • Anonymous

    They brought up many of the issues I myself noticed. I watched yhe first two episodes, won’t be watching any more. However, the author treats Capatalism as the opposite of Democracy-freedom. Capitalism is freedom. Democracy is two wolfs and a lamb voting on what’s for dinner.

  • simoneldrige

    Terrible review. Did you watch the same show?

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