During the season 2 finale of Continuum and the preview of season 3 that I posted a few days back I went on for a long time about the deficiencies of season 2. Afterwards I promised myself that I won’t mention them again and look as season 3 with a clean slate. Well, I have already broken that promise and not because the season 3 première is so awful but because it addresses a lot of the issues as well as giving the show a new impetus. You could almost call it a series reboot, but we will have to wait until next week and the week after to be sure.
Usually while reviewing an episode I start by writing a summary if the events. However, that isn’t really possible with ‘Minute to Minute’ as it involves a lot of time travel and makes the plot of Back To The Future seem simple. So I will just give the general highlight of the episode.
Alec Sadler (Erik Knudsen) has indeed managed to travel back in time since last we saw him. He has travelled back about a week and vows to undo the death of Emily. The only person he confides in is Jason Sadler. Together they take back control of the time machine fragment and the cybernetic suit kept at Alec’s lab. There they are confronted by Kellog, Alec states that he knows Kellog wants to betray him but suggests that Mr. Escher is far too dangerous as he will soon have time travel capabilities. Kellog meets with Escher in the museum similar in the way during season 2 marking this an alternate version of that same meeting. After the meeting is over Emily shoots Mr. Escher on Kellog’s (Stephen Lobo) orders.
Meanwhile Kiera (Rachel Nichols) is kept captive by the freelancers led by Chen. She is also interrogated by another woman who is trying to convince Kiera that they are trying to protect the timeline. While being escorted back to her cell Kiera together with Garza manage to break free after a brutal fight. Garza admits they have slim chances if escape and reminisces about an occasion in the military when a suggestion by her got a squad killed. Garza lures away Chen’s men but gets killed in the process. Chen manages to recapture Kiera but also notices that the timeline they are in is becoming unstable. The woman who interrogated Kiera finally convinces her to use the time machine to try and stop Alec from doing any more damage during the week that he has travelled back in time. The woman suggests that Alec isn’t supposed to live happily ever after with Emily.
After Kiera has travelled back in time she once again is in the freelancer’s prison. She frees Garza (Luvia Petersen) who has to be convinced by Kiera’s sincerity by recalling Garza’s wartime story. After Garza manages to escape Kiera allows herself to be captured. She convinces the leader of the freelancers that she know also wants to protect the timeline. She demands that she be the one to decide which of the two Alec Sadler’s should be the one to create the future. As Alec-that-travelled-back-a-week prepares to leave with new identity papers he discovers Kiera’s body in his lab. Alec is then confronted by the Kiera-that-travelled-back-in-time and now works for the freelancers. The last shot alludes to the fact she shot her other self.
This episode of Continuum takes a while to get going. A lot of question remain unanswered but at least they are mentioned as such by the characters themselves. One thing that has never really become clear exactly clear is where and when Kiera is being held captive by the freelancers. I can only presume that it was in the aftermath of the timeline where Alec travelled back a week. As you may guess, keeping all these timeline out of each other’s way is a little tricky.
The episode wouldn’t be called a reboot if it didn’t do some surprising things. I never saw it coming that Kellog would have Emily kill Mr. Escher. I am not even sure if Kellog has that kind of leverage over Emily. I suppose we will have to find out. I also appreciated that agent Gardiner was mentioned again. After season 1 I was sure he would become a regular but alas he was killed rather quickly during season 2 and never heard from again. As in the new timeline his body has not yet been found we can be sure he will have to play the part of the corpse one last time.
During season 2 one of the best things was the enlarged character role for Jasmine Garza. Her motivations seemed more genuine than what we could infer of her from season 1. She seemed genuinely concerned with trying to prevent the future from becoming a police state. Her assassination attempt of Alec in 2077 only failed because he knew about it in advance. By recruiting her to judge whether the Alec of the present would become a good man he sent a very dangerous assassin after his past self. However, Alec of the present past Garza’s judgment and now with her escape from the freelancer prison I hope we will see more of the two together.
Beyond all that we still have not seen enough to truly say where season 3 is going, and I hope that will be a good thing. This episode featured very little of Detective Fonnegra or Inspector Dillon but that was to be expected. I hope the shows creator, Simon Barry, can keep up the good quality that we saw yesterday. Next week’s episode is entitled Minute Man.
Score; 8.4 / 10. A very good reboot episode for Continuum but not al issues can be easily swept under the rug.