Friday, September 11, 2015

The Return of Continuum

The new (and final) season of Continuum starts tonight, in the post-prime time slot on SyFy (10 Central).

For those who haven't seen it, this is a series about the ramifications of time travel -- can you change the future by changing the past, and what are the ramifications of that? It's about a cop in a dystopian, corporate-controlled future who gets caught in the wave when a group of terrorist sets off a device to send them back in time so they can change the past and create a different future. She just wants to get home to her husband and son, but doing that will require finding a way to travel in time, and that requires catching the terrorists. The other issue is that if anything is changed, it might change the future so she might not have a husband or son to go back to, so she has to be very, very careful how she goes about things.

And it gets more complicated from there.

Her primary ally in all this is the genius kid she knows will grow up to be the architect of their future -- a kind of unholy mix of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs who runs the corporation that seems to control all technology. He's certainly good now (though with some issues), but whether or not his future self is good is rather ambiguous. It's also ambiguous whether his future actions suggest that he remembers these events, so that they've already happened.

It's kind of headspinning, but in a good way. I'm a sucker for time travel stories that actually play with the nature of time and traveling in time as a plot device (as opposed to the "travel to a place/time where our adventure will happen" stories). The original Terminator film is one of my all-time favorite movies. I'm less enamored of the sequels, though I did like the TV series. I love Connie Willis's time travel novels, which get into chaos theory and whether the timeline is self-correcting so that it's impossible to mess things up without something else happening to set everything right. The SyFy web site has a decent Continuum 101 page to refresh yourself, though I'm not sure this is a series you could just dive into at this point.

I'll be watching tonight because my future self sent me a reminder, which means she watched it, which means if I don't watch it I could be creating a paradoxical split timestream, and that never works out well.

Incidentally, I'm sure this series will come up at FenCon this year, since our theme is time travel, and there are lots of panels about time travel books, movies, and TV.

1 comment:

Margie said...

Love your blog name! And about Continuum--for me the scariest aspect is how real that future could be. Basically, our government has become a corpocracy in disguise--Continuum just took off the masks.

I don't see--with all the changes Keira's made--how she's going to be able to get back to her future--and in just six episodes left :(

Did you ever watch Sliders? I loved the first few seasons of alternate realities.