Oh man. I love it when shows really go for it on their season finales. After a second season that has done nothing but exceed expectations, ‘Second Time’ raises the bar once again. The only question now is: when the show returns for its third season, will we even recognize it?
Let’s bitch it out…
Phew…just let me catch my breath because that was a seriously insane finale. It’s rare, but every once in a while a series will use the final episode of the season to go full-blown insane. Back in the day Alias was pretty good at blowing the roof off the hinges and obviously Lost was a regular jaw-dropper. But Continuum really surprised me with ‘Second Time’ – mostly because I figured the majority of these developments wouldn’t be addressed in favour of dragging them out longer. I also only expected one potential cliffhanger, not one for pretty much EVERY.SINGLE.CHARACTER.
Moreso than other episode this season, ‘Second Time’ feels like it gets the balance right between the various storylines, especially the flashforward to 2077. Perhaps it’s simply that the flashforward feels extremely relevant as both storylines are moving towards the activation of the time travel devices: the execution scene that will send Liber8 65 years into the past and the drama on the 34th floor of Piron that ultimately sends young Alec Sadler (Erik Knudsen) into the past to save dead Emily (an unseen Magda Apanowich, who it seems might be returning in S3?)
The development of both storylines is pretty juicy. We’ve long known that future Alec (William B. Davis) is a bit shady. He’s obviously aware of who Kiera (Rachel Nichols) is, although we always suspected that he sent her back in time because he knew her from their time together in 2012 (aka the series we’re watching). ‘Second Time’ reveals that it may not be as premeditated as that. It appears that Kiera catches his eye because she doggedly refused to let go of the case of the murdered SadTech employee we learned about last week.
We also learn that Kiera’s husband, Greg (John Reardon) isn’t quite as duplicitous as we thought. It turns out that his involvement in sending Kiera back is actually an attempt to protect her. Greg warned his supervisor about her in the hopes of having her removed from the execution chamber. Guess he’s not as bad as we thought.
The same cannot be said of people in 2012. It feels like folks in our current timeline have been watching too many “con” movies because everyone is double and triple crossing each other. Alec is the worst: he plays Kiera against Escher (Hugh Dillon), but it’s all just a ruse to ensure that he can access the time travel device and get back to Emily. Although I do think his apology to Kiera as she’s arrested earlier in the episode is genuine, I also believe that he actually believes his speech about protecting “family” and his newfound father, Escher. I’d buy into this more if Alec weren’t so damn gullible: he’s already fallen for one liar this season and now he’s seemingly siding with another – if not the – most dubious character on the show. I’m not doubting the legitimacy of Escher’s sob story (although we all knows that photos can be doctored, right?) Rather, I would expect Alec to have a bit more loyalty to Kiera, or at least more loyalty to her than to the random guy that just dropped the “father” bomb. Shouldn’t Alec be smarter than this? (Side Note: Yes, I realize he’s grieving and he blames Kiera, regardless of what he says).
And then there’s our Liber8 faction: Kellog (Stephen Lobo) realizes that he’s burnt all of his bridges right around the time that Kiera kicks Travis (Roger Cross) down an elevator shaft, so Kellog elects to tag along with her back to the future. Alas, like many things on this show, plans don’t quite work out thanks to those pesky freelancers. Flashforward to the end of the episode and the show’s whaaaaa???? final scene: it’s revealed that freelancers Warren (Adrian Holmes), Miller (Zak Santiago) and a very much alive Curtis (Terry Chen) have imprisoned all of the time travelers in lovely specimen cases at some unknown location and left them to rot. It’s all part of their 65 year project to rid the streets of time travelers, but suddenly we’re thrown into a brave new world in which our protagonist and our antagonists are facing a larger, more deadly threat.
Bam! And with that we, the audience, are left to rot until S3 next year. Bring. It. On.
- The Disgruntled Individual makes a valid point I initially overlooked: Warren calls Kiera a “glitch” in the continuum, suggesting that she’s more than a simple time traveler like Liber8 and Jason (Ian Tracey). Is this just because her role in all of this wasn’t planned, because she’s contributed to the development of so many future events, or something else we don’t yet know of?
- Now we know the story of how Jason arrived in 2012. Guess this means that Kiera’s fears are justified. Jason appears quite sane in his 2077 scenes, so it appears that time travel does indeed mess with your brain
- Let’s play a fun game called “who’s your daddy?”: So Jason is a DNA match for Alec because he’s his son? And Escher is Alec’s father (and therefore Jason’s grandfather)? Wow…well played, Continuum – can’t say that I was expecting that reveal!
- Speaking of Alec: any bets on where he took that bullet as he jumped into the time travel vortex?
- Please take a moment to commemorate the kick-ass fight between Travis and Kiera. There’s more than a few nods to The Matrix and Terminator 2 as Travis takes out the Piron guard station and then it’s a full-on, balls-to-the-walls fight to the death between two superpowered time travelers. I’ll admit that as epic as it is, I don’t like seeing Kiera get her butt kicked (I appreciate that the suit evens them out, but I like seeing Kiera do the whupping). I was also a wee bit wary when they take to the roof of the elevator for the final confrontation, but it’s still cheer-worthy when Kiera tases Travis and knees him into the abyss. Bonus points for Travis’ suit cam continuing to show the tumble onscreen when we cut to the next scene in the lab where Jason and Sonya (Lexa Doig) are watching
- P.S. There’s no way that Travis is dead. He’s got his oxygen mask and his enhanced powers to help him recover. That tank is probably just like the recuperation/healing tanks in The Empire Strikes Back and Starship Troopers
- Oh, we have to talk about the Vancouver Police Department. It’s good to see Dillon (Brian Markinson) finally embrace his inner a-hole and go for full-on villainy. Kiera says it best when she accuses him of doing anything to get back into power following Nora’s take-over earlier this season. As fun as it is to watch Liber8 blow sh*t up all the time, the show does need regular human villains, too. Between Dillon and the new Mayor, Vancouer is looking at some tough times ahead
- Speaking of big changes: what about next steps for Carlos (Victor Webster) and Betty (Jennifer Spence) after they both walk off the job after punching Dillon, releasing Kiera and getting outed as a Liber8 mole? It’s logical that they end up at Julian’s (Richard Harmon) considering it’s off the grid, but I’m still a little surprised. I know that Carlos saved Julian, but I didn’t think he was a huge fan of the kid who shot him
- Finally, I know it’s been quite some time since we’ve seen John Reardon, but considering all of the continuity that went into the recreation of the execution scene from the pilot, couldn’t someone have paid closer attention to Greg’s significantly longer hair?!
- Alec (as Kiera is taken away): “I will always blame you. Do you understand that? Always” Methinks a certain portion of this accusation is actually pretty true
- Kellog (when Kiera calls him by his first name): “Matthew? That might be endearing if it weren’t so damned manipulative”
- Kiera (when Kellog suggests killing him won’t solve her problems): “But it would make me feel so much better”
- Escher (to Alec): “Kiera changed everything”
- Travis (throwing Kiera around): “When are you going to wake up? You’re the villain in this tale”
What did you think of the finale? Are you psyched to see what all of these shake-ups mean for S3? Which development was most shocking to you? When do you think Alec jumped back to? Where is Escher (he didn’t seem to be locked up in the cases)? Did you think for a minute that Kiera might actually get home? And is Carlos now a part of Theseus’ movement? Sound off below
Continuum has now finished airing its second season. It will return for S3 on both Showcase and Syfy in 2014