Title: Being Better Is So Much Harder & It Doesn’t have to be This Way
Director: Ron Murphy Bruce Mc Donald
Writers: Created and Written by Joseph Mallozzi, and Paul Mullie.
Starring: Melissa O’Neil, Anthony Lemke, Alex Mallari Jr., Jodelle Ferland, Roger Cross, Zoie Palmer, Melanie Liburd
Episode length: 42 minutes
Nothing is ever easy in the Dark Matter universe, but the crew of the Raza always seems to find a way to survive and win with a little help from their friends.
Like a lot of the fans of the show, I was eager to see what the series had in store for the season 3 premiere and to make it even more exciting, the premiere was a double dose of episodes. The first was mostly to bring us up to date, who survived the explosion on board the space station, and how. The second continued the story and served to set up some storylines going forward into season 3.
As expected the crew survived, (minus Nyx of course) otherwise it would be a really short season, but of course, what made it interesting was how they survived, and how the show resolved the rest of the season 2 cliffhangers that had us excited to see what would happen next.
Who would end up in possession of the blink drive was just one of the questions we were left with at the end of last season, not to mention the impending corporate war. The series did a good job answering most of what I needed to know with only a few exceptions for example just who’s side is the Galactic Authority on in all this?
The season premiere left me with a clearer idea of who is whose side in the coming war, with the implication that the Ferrous Corporation is and has been a more militaristic and maybe even fascist and aggressive bunch that the rest, but I am still not clear just who is the Galactic Authority works for, and what side of the conflict they fall on.
The show had a pair of eventful episodes in store for the season opener. Like I said, it had the double duty of bringing us up to date, plus setting up some stuff going forward for the show’s third season. It was full of the stuff this show does well, suspense, adventure, and enough action to remind us it hasn’t forgotten that part of its success has been because of it.
It also added a nice new wrinkle regarding the nature of the blink drive and what it’s capable of. The return of the show was, for the most part, a job well done, and I for one was glad to see the return of one of my favorite more recent outer space adventure series and happy to know my sci-fi Fridays have returned for the next 13 weeks.
Here’s a recap with some comments (*warning spoilers follow*)
The crew of the Raza all survived the destruction of the space station after it got blown up on the order of the former Four/Ryo Ishida. Six (Roger Cross) and Two (Mellisa O’Neill) escape in the Marauder and Three (Anthony Lemke) ironically gets saved by a Galactic Authority officer who happened to be an old acquaintance of Six. Five (Jodelle Ferland) and Commander Truffaut (Torri Higginson) escape in a pod designed to serve that purpose and Truffault negotiate safe passage back to the Raza for the two of them.
Truffault has some exposition at this point explaining the lay of the land going forward into war, with her corporation Mikei, remaining neutral for now, and avoiding getting involved in the war for as long as possible. Hoping the others will wipe each other out or at least be weakened enough to not offer any problems if they can wait things out long enough for that to happen. Eminently pragmatic and maybe a little cold blooded
Upon their arrival, Ann ( my name for Android) reports all she knows and Five is determined o go back to find the others. Ann tells them that Ryo killed Nyx, because she believes it to be true.
Almost immediately they are attacked by a Ferrous Battlecruiser, both ships damage the other’s engine so that they cannot move. The Raza’ shields are fine but the weapons are offline. The Ferrous ship sends over a squad of armed men n a shuttle. They don’t stand a chance against these three ladies, who are no pushovers. They stampede them into a deadly ambush with Ann armed with a pair of machine guns who wipes them out and then amusingly blows the smoke from the guns as if she is in an old western. Good stuff.
The ladies then send the shuttle back set to explode and the enemy ship fires on it, but to no avail, and are destroyed.
Meanwhile, they manage to get in touch with the Marauder which is running out of breathable air. Two does the noble thing giving Six more of the air that’s left, depending on her nanites to help her survive. Five manages to get the Raza’s engines working and they rescue the pair. While she is out of air she hallucinates Nyx is there with her and she says goodbye with a kiss.
Meanwhile, Three is in the custody of a Galactic Authority officer named Anders (Jeff Teravainen) and wakes up to find himself cuffed in an abandoned warehouse of some kind and the cop is not the trusting sort. When they are attacked by security drones they are forced to work together and Five proves he is not such a bad guy after all when he saves the officer’s life. The cop turns ut to be an old acquaintance of Six, and when his fellow officers show up to rescue him, he doesn’t tell them Three is there, he later contacts the Raza, giving his location and they pick Three up.
After the dust settles and everyone’s back on board it brought up what to do next, and two says it’s simple, get back the blink drive and kill Ryo/Four, but the rest of the crew is too eager to kill him for his betrayal, and eventually it comes out he wasn’t the one that killed Nyx.
Five hooks herself up to the ship’s computer and downloads some files into her brain. An act that later proves to be a dangerous idea that threatens the well-being of her mind and memories. She experiences some of Ryo’s memories and they find out about tthe secret research lab hidden in a nebula.
They attack and invade it, they are confronted by a clone of Ryo who has ordered the scientists aboard to use the blink drive to return the space station back to Zairon, but something goes wrong. They end up in what they describe as null space a place outside of normal physics and it begins to shrink, wiping out anything it touches. It threatens to end the space station as well as anyone, and anything inside it. when it proves more of an annoyance than helpful Three shoots it to death without hesitation. They are left with two scientists to deal with. one is willing to cooperate and the other is fanatically opposed to helping the Raza’s crew
When the clone of Ryo/Four proves more of an annoyance than helpful Three shoots it to death without hesitation. They are left with two scientists (Paul Sun-Hyung Lee, Jean Yoon) to deal with. one is willing to cooperate and the other is fanatically opposed to helping the Raza’s crew. She runs, they give chase, and Three ends up shooting her down and she gets swallowed by the approaching phenomenon. They get the blink drive back and hook it up to the Marauder and it allows them to get back to normal space.
It looks like the scientists tampered with it so they don’t hook it back up the Raza. Meanwhile, Five is having problems and passing out as a result of her hooking her elf up the computer nd it’s messing with her memory, She is experiencing living in an alternate universe with a different name it is all somehow connected with her past and the truth about what happened to her parents. This is a storyline I think we can expect to see more of this season.
The season premiere was satisfying without maybe seeming as special as some might have hoped for, but indeed it was well-crafted storytelling as satisfying as a good solid steak and potatoes meal. It might not seem like anything fancy but it sure is damn good and just the thing to hit the spot. It’s interesting that these episodes were written by Mullie and Mallozzi hey are two stories that reflect the sorts of stories these two tell and how they differ in style.
I’m happy to report that Dark Matter is back and all is right with the world once again. I look forward to seeing what the season holds in store in the upcoming episodes. [review]