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Continuum series (2013–2015) (TV series review now as DVD).

February 20, 2021 | By | Reply More

For the life of me, I can’t understand why the ‘Continuum’ series from 2013-2015 isn’t available as a boxset. It’s taken a lot of wrangling to pull all four seasons, especially season 4 from America, and for a seemingly police SF show with a time travel element, ‘Continuum’ hits so many points. From the audio commentaries, creator/showrunner Simon Barry and co-producer/director Pat Williams reveal they had a low budget, often filming two episodes at the same time but had a cast who got it right in a couple takes.

When you see some of the complexities of filming in the present and future taken in their stride and set in Vancouver rather than masquerading as an American city for a change you must have respect.

In 2077, several dangerous terrorists from the Liber8 organisation are about to be executed, when they combine a device that sends them to 2012. Unfortunately, it also takes the nearest police officer, Protector Kiera Cameron (actress Rachel Nichols) into the past as well but fortunately is shifted away from them. Fortunately, she is wearing her powered armoured suit and various sensory equipment but has to adapt to her situation, knowing she has a husband and son in the future. She fails to stop one of the terrorists but meets police detective Carlos Fonnegra (actor Victor Webster) and masquerades as a covert intelligence officer aecond to them and also the realisation that she has to be careful about changing the past.

Her radio frequencies are unique but the inventor of it, Alex Sadler (actor Erik Knudsen) is still developing it as a teen ends up helping her adjust to life and providing information as she needs it. Getting through police red tape and getting them on side and stalking the terrorists. I should point out, this is only the starting point in season one and things rarely stay the same for long.

The Liber8, in turn, originally wanted to go back to the future but, when that fails, opt to make their mark in the past to stop the perilous future from happening. After all, they don’t have police records in our present although Kiera identifies them to the police and changes, with the help of Alex, as being an FBI agent. We so see some of the future through Keira’s eyes in many of the first three seasons and it really is pretty much a police state. It is so easy to have some reveal that doesn’t make sense in the past but it does look like a lot of work was done in pre-production so it just makes sense of what was already shown.

There have been comparisons to other time travels of this nature like ‘Time Trax’, although I can probably add several other TV series to that with only slight differences to the MO. Kiera’s thin armour is short-circuited, so she has to rely on her information senses a couple times so that and Sadler’s communication link has a parallel to the 1970s series ‘Search’ technology wise, especially in season one episode 4.

For the first season, it’s pretty easy to figure out from the first episode just who was manipulating who got sent into the past and is confirmed in its final episode and also indicating that a lot was going on behind the scenes. In many respects, the future is ensuring the past is correct for the invents to create itself. Getting hold of them is a lot more problematic and have to be imported. Pay attention to the Canadian than American websites if you can as this series is very addictive.

Actress Rachel Nichols with dark hair is a ringer for Jodie Foster and looking her up, I’m not the only person to spot that, although currently she’s dyed or natural blonde.

It wasn’t difficult to recognise and I have no idea it’s a spoiler or not that the future Alex (and I’m not going to spoil who that is) had something to do with ensuring Kiera Cameron got projected into the past but as he also knows his own timeline, then he knew it had to happen to ensure things happened to create the future they lived in. This also turns out to be what he what’s to do as well, so the continuum of the future as he knows it is changed. There are some things that you do need to ensure things are kept on track.

The second season is when the under-story gets going and the future Alex’s motivations become known. Without getting too spoiler, he’s leaving the decision as to what kind of future his younger self wants. Does he want the type of future that Kiera came from with terrorists killing millions of people or something better. Changing the future, especially as people in the past become aware of events starts to change things.

Kiera also reveals her time travel background to her police partner/liaison Carlos Fonnegra, who ends up taking it in his stride as it explains a lot of the things she’s been doing and the connection to Alex.

An underlying current of the entire series is knowing the future, should you change the past. Of course, Kiera doesn’t want it changed too much because she has a husband and son there. The future Alec sent a message back in Kiera’s software to his past self to make the right decisions and not necessarily for his own future. In some respects, Alec’s future self is the player or architect who sent the terrorists and other people into the past but really he was fulfilling the event although it’s obvious he really doesn’t know much about pocket universes.

The most significant change is the police department getting a supplemental payment and becoming pro-active in their response to Liber8 and then are definite parallels to Kiera’s future where the police are formidable and the prison sentences literally brain-numbing. Of course, the future has already diverged and a different sets of people come back to the past and Kiera is both assassinated and continue.

If you thought ‘Continuum’ was just an SF police procedural show, season 3 will totally upset that with reference or comparison to the 1989 ‘Millennium’ film ‘12 Monkeys’ TV series but all in a good way. The different version of Kiera also discovers the Kiera we’ve watched through the first two seasons has been shot dead and needs to find out who murdered herself. In the fourth season, the next time machine could even look like a futuristic Time Tunnel. Time travel at its best. Alec’s father, Usher, has also been killed but that one is quickly solved but not disclosed to the police. Then there is the question of what to do with two Alecs and which one will create the right future.

With the third season of ‘Continuum’, where there was an extras on the DVD, this one is loaded with audio commentaries. Oddly, the second episode soundtrack is a bit out of sync when the commentary is on but fine the other way around.

Actress Rachel Nichols is doing a slightly different take on her character Kiera Cameron. It’s a slightly subtle coolness from the first two seasons and it’s a shame, unlike the two young Alex Sadlers (actor Erik Knudsen) that we didn’t see them both together more often.

There is explanation by the showrunners on the last episode and on the only audio commentary of Season Three that they never knew if they were going to get another season which might explain why the final episodes of each season looked a little rushed.

In many respects, as ‘Continuum’ continued, it becomes obvious that as changes are made in our present then they have consequences that mostly allows them to still have time travel and people coming back into the past to make sure they future isn’t interfered with.

The factions grow and Liber8’s presence seems to be shrinking with every threat. There’s a definite argument that if time travel exists, you would want to get rid of it or do enough to ensure certain aspects of the future are changed.

There is so much good material here and shows again that Canada is capable of generating some fine SF series of their own. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a metallic ball segments to put back together. It might look like one of those chocolate oranges but only needs a decent energy source to power it up.

GF Willmetts

February 2021

Continuum Season One

(3 DVDs 10 x 43 minute episodes. ASIN: 829 279 3)

 Continuum Season Two

(3 DVDs 11 x 43 minute episodes with 43 minutes of extras. ASIN: 61127418)

 Continuum Season Three

(3 DVDs 13 x 43 minute episodes with extras. ASIN: 13322 02009)

 Continuum Season Four

(2 DVDs 6 x 43 minute episodes with extras. ASIN: 61172614)

 cast: Rachel Nichols, Victor Webster, Eric Knudsen, Stephen Lobo, Omar Newton, Roger Cross, Luvia Petersen, Brain Markinson, Lexa Doig, Jennifer Spence, Richard Harmon, Terry Chen, Magda Apanowicz, Ian Tracey, Tony Amendola, Nicholas Lea, William B. Davies and many more

check out website: www.universal-playback.com

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Category: Scifi, TV

About the Author ()

Geoff Willmetts has been editor at SFCrowsnest for some 21 plus years now, showing a versatility and knowledge in not only Science Fiction, but also the sciences and arts, all of which has been displayed here through editorials, reviews, articles and stories. With the latter, he has been running a short story series under the title of ‘Psi-Kicks’ If you want to contribute to SFCrowsnest, read the guidelines and show him what you can do. If it isn’t usable, he spends as much time telling you what the problems is as he would with material he accepts. This is largely how he got called an Uncle, as in Dutch Uncle. He’s not actually Dutch but hails from the west country in the UK.

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