Action-packed sequences that kept us on the edge of our seats and set up character choices that clearly defined the high stakes on the line in the series finale ahead.
Questionable character choices led to dire consequences. If Carlos was now on board with Keira and Alec, why the harsh stance toward justice at the expense of everyone’s agendas?
Everyone struggled with making choices that served themselves or the greater good, but when the chips were down and the stakes were highest clear choices were made and steep prices were paid.
CAUTION: SPOILERS AHEAD IN OUR DETAILED REVIEW
Continuum — In exchange for the chance to send her home to 2077, Alec (Erik Knudsen) and Kiera (Rachel Nichols) solidify plans to help Kellog (Stephen Lobo) stop an invasion from the future. It’s a win for everyone, especially younger Kellog who stands to lose his organs to his older self. But before the plan can be put in play, sage advice from Kiera to Dillon (Brian Markinson) inadvertently begins a deadly domino effect. Inspired by Kiera’s advice, Dillon hands evidence to Carlos (Victor Webster) linking Kellog to Escher’s (Hugh Dillon) murder and when an incensed Carlos arrests Kellog, everyone’s plans take a dark detour.
RELATED | Continuum 4×03 Review “Power Hour”
With time running out, Brad (Ryan Robbins) pleads with Carlos to let Kellog go and save everyone from a more painful solution, but when Carlos arrests Brad as well, Vasquez (Kyra Zagorsky), Nolan (Lisa Berry) and Rollins (Aleks Paunovic) begin a bloody assault of the precinct to break Kellog out. Seeing her only chance to free Kellog for her own purposes, Keira escapes with him in the confusion, but also frees Travis from a certain-death fate at the hands of Piron scientists. As the body count rises, and Kiera faces a no-win situation, everyone must decide what their legacy may be as they struggle to avoid death or embrace it in this explosive penultimate episode of Continuum!
Everyone ultimately has to choose a side and define their legacy.
For a show that so often embroils its audience in deep thought and countless hours of creative and intelligent debate, it’s almost difficult to decide exactly where to start breaking down this penultimate episode of the series. So much happened that it’s almost too much to take in at first watch.
Continuum has never shied away from the action when needed, but we’re fairly certain that more bullets were fired and more blood spilled in this hour than just about any episode aside from Kagame’s suicide mission to destroy the tower in Season One. But while that happened in a single instant, the last half of this episode was non-stop action until the dust settled—literally.
The themes of the show didn’t disappear, they just took a half hour break while the VPD withstood a calculated and brutal assault by the future soldiers in an effort to free Kellog. When the dust did clear, what was left was a thirst for vengeance by Carlos and a weary Kiera with only a battered Alec to comfort her. And while we fully expect a twist to the end of this series that has us talking around the social media water cooler long after the finale is over, for the moment we were simply holding on for the ride.
But that didn’t surprise us one bit. With only one episode left after this, it was time for everyone to take sides, make choices and for things to move toward the inevitable conclusion. But Continuum didn’t just move, it steamrolled. And good or bad, truths were revealed and the endgame set. That endgame was sparked by sage advice from Kiera to Dillon as the two compared notes within Piron’s halls.
“You took a hit. You took it to heart. You have other choices. We all do. In the fairytales I’ve read, the hero enters the cave to slay the dragon. Not to join him.” ~ Kiera
Kiera, in her honesty, couldn’t have known just how big a ripple that statement would have made. Dillon let it sink in and the resulting arrest of Kellog later set things in brutal motion. Apparently there is a timetable for the portal the future soldiers are building and Kellog behind bars jeopardized that timeline. Every bit of chaos that happened after started with this small exchange between Kiera and Dillon. The ripple effect has always been a huge part of this show and what a tsunami that small statement created later.
The selfish versus the selfless.
Continuum has touched on a number of themes this season, but one that has been the heart of several key storylines is the debate between doing for one’s self versus what might be best for everyone else. Kiera has said more than once she wants to both do right by everyone, but still get what she wants. That’s not always feasible and some part of her has to know it. The plain and simple truth is that Kiera has been selfish in her constant angling this season to get home. The stinger had to be hearing Garza (Luvia Petersen) and now Kellog, the king of selfish behavior, call her out on it.
“You made your choice. You chose you.” ~ Kellog
Kiera had given up on the idea of getting home only to have a CMR simulation drive it right back into her skull with a vengeance this season. While that complete turn was questionable at the beginning, we’ve given the writing team a bit of a pass knowing that having Kiera in that state of mind must have been needed to complete this story as planned. And with only six episodes to do that, they had to make that shift quickly.
But Kiera’s not alone. Brad’s family seems to be the deciding factor for him. He’s made the choice to ensure their safety at all costs. Everything else, including the lives of all those in 2015, apparently come second. His deception of Kiera, disabling of the VPD and torture of Alec are things he can never come back from. He’s made his choice and may have to live with the outcome good or bad.
Even Carlos with his single-minded pursuit of justice is self-serving to a degree. And who says The Traveller isn’t just as selfish as everyone else in hoping to manipulate time to restore his own future? How are we assured that his future is better for anyone but him? So is it selfish for everyone to push their own agendas or is it simply art imitating life? Human nature includes a strong sense of self preservation. Sometimes those tendencies override our sense of right and wrong so strongly that carnage is left in our wakes.
Things have escalated dramatically with the death of Lucas and the assault on the VPD. Lives have been lost. And for what? The organs of young Kellog and the chance for Kiera to get home? If that’s not the epitome of selfish by both Warlord Kellog and Kiera, we don’t know what is. Will Kiera make the hard choice to stop the madness before it’s too late? Because we don’t think either Kellog will.
All of these are interesting choices by the writing team. We commend them for being bold and taking risks by putting some of our heroes in compromising positions and some of our villains in noble ones. Those wrinkles make all of these characters more real to us. Human beings aren’t perfect and Continuum has explored that complexity of individuals stumbling or rising on their paths better than most shows ever dream of doing.
The noble sacrifice can erase a lot of red on the ledger.
Travis Verta has been something of a certainty from the very beginning. His mission has been clear—to disrupt the future he came from and prevent the types of human exploitation that made him into the killing machine he was designed to be. What we have enjoyed most about Travis as this series winds to its conclusion is his intelligent clarity about his mission. Roger Cross has nailed that vibe all season and was on top of his game in this episode.
More than most, Travis has seen how easy it is for corruption to take hold and for hubris to win out over reason. And it’s that perspective that’s made his banter with Carlos such a joy to watch. Both actors grabbed onto the tone of this episode and didn’t let go. Travis and Carlos are kindred spirits in a sense. They both blindly want justice. They’ve simply been molded by different circumstances into accepting different ways to do it.
“I’m not gonna hide who I am, Fonnegra. Neither would you. The truth of me reveals the truth of her.” ~ Travis
Both men somehow realize that Kiera is the key to how the future correctly unfolds. But Travis has a unique perspective. He is finally free of the shackles that controlled him as a bio-engineered soldier to commit soulless acts of brutality to preserve an elitist society. If you are a man of conscience, as Travis has shown to be, those things mold you into someone different. Someone with a purpose to set things right, even if you have to commit some wrong to get there. That’s made him an interesting confidant for Carlos and Kiera alike this season. More than once each has visited Travis and the banter has been filled with raw truth.
“Your system will say what it wants. It doesn’t matter to me. I’ll take us both down.” ~ Travis
“It doesn’t matter to Kiera, either. She’s going home.” ~ Carlos
“Forward in time? Mmmhmm. She just woke up and now she wants to go back to sleep? You should take me to court now, Inspector. I’ll make sure she stays.” ~ Travis
Travis is still fighting for an end to the 2077 he left. He knows more than most how badly that future needs to not happen despite any personal sacrifices that need to be made to achieve it. Kiera has been blinded by the selfish desire to see her son. We can’t blame her for that, but at the same time the oppression of millions seems a steep price to pay to have your own private moments of comfort. Travis sees that and is much more perceptive than people have given him credit. When the chips were down in this episode, he proved Kellog wrong.
“What will they say about Travis Verta at the end? He killed like no other. He terrorized with the best of them. They’ll say ‘Travis Verta, he was the key. The key to unlocking the secrets of a genuine superman. The future warrior. The super-soldier.’ I’ll be the one keeping your legacy alive as I patent and replicate every nano-particle from 2077 inside that bioengineered hulk you call a body.” ~ Kellog
In the end, Travis made a different choice. Given his freedom by Kiera, he chose to preserve a 2015 and those that might fight for a better future by defending Carlos. In what was undoubtedly one of the most epic fights of this show’s 42 episode run, Travis squared off against Rollins (Aleks Paunovic) and the with the tag-team help of Carlos, saved countless lives in the process. Much like the Terminator in “Judgement Day” Carlos also chose to go out a hero and at the same time end the possibility that the advanced technology in his own body could be perverted by the likes of Kellog or others like him. In the end, despite all his criminal activity, he changed minds and hearts. Carlos for one will forever be in his debt.
“He helped save a lot of lives, including mine. He had a chance to walk, but he didn’t.” ~ Carlos
FINAL VERDICT: Continuum pulled no punches in its penultimate episode. Blood was spilled, sides were taken and the stage is set for an epic finale where everyone will be in harm’s way as all of 2015 positions itself to stop all of 2039.
Lots of thoughts, emotions and a feeling of sensory overload seemed to be the reaction of the hour after this episode. Continuum has finished 41 of it’s 42 episodes and with one left to go and things seem to have escalated dramatically. With the loss of so many key players from Liber8 and others that have traveled back in time, is it possible that the 2077 we’ve seen from the beginning still happens with no significant changes? That’s certainly a possibility, but we have the distinct feeling that wrinkles we haven’t thought of yet are on their way in the final hour.
Veteran writer Shelley Eriksen, who penned this episode saved some of her guttural best for last. We questioned Carlos’s tough stance for justice that seemed born out of a personal agenda more than anything else, but in the end, he’s got an axe to grind after the VPD was demolished and deep down he wants Kiera to stay no matter what. We love Kiera too so we can’t say we blame him, but he seemed to take a very hard line this episode to nail Kellog no matter what it meant to Kiera—that is until things went completely haywire. The moments in this episode were as much delivered by the talent of the cast as the script, but both worked together well and the result was a fast-paced and emotional ride that left us in awe when it was over.
Director Pat Williams took the baton from David Frazee’s middle two episodes to direct this episode and will also orchestrate the finale. Managing the action was well done, especially mixing in the spliced dialogue between Kellog and Travis as things began to truly escalate. We loved the choices to focus tightly on those two as things began to unravel.
Continuum has pushed the bounds of intelligent television in it’s four year run and it hasn’t ceased to entertain us with dynamic action and suspense when the narrative called for it. This episode will likely go down in the annals of Continuum lore as one that marked the heroic end of one tragically flawed character that made the noble choice in the end, but it will also be marked as the end of the VPD as the central hub of this series as we know it.
With such a vicious attack, we can only surmise that all sides are now going to be set for a dynamic and potentially deadly showdown where loyalties will ultimately be tested and each character will need to decide once and for all if they side with themselves or with the greater good. We don’t know how it will play out, but we will be sitting on the edge of our seat as Continuum reaches it’s epic series conclusion!
Questions, Comments, Concerns and My Reaction on Twitter…
- Wanna kill your lawyer? Go ahead, I’ll sell tickets. We really enjoyed that moment.
- Don’t you always feel funny when you get back to your office and your boss is sitting in your chair?
- I love how the Time Ball can do just about anything. 🙂
- In the fairytales I’ve read, the hero enters the cave to slay the dragon. Not to join him. Sage advice w/a domino effect?
- That beacon proved otherwise. Did they NOT receive the beacon signal?
- You chose you. Kinda stings when Kellog says your being selfish. He’s in the Hall of Fame.
- You think I’m being selfish? We noticed how Alec didn’t even attempt to answer this questions.
- I can’t lose them again. Brad needs to make a choice.
- That’s a good one. You understand why I had to ask? Truth is stranger than fiction! lol
- You tell your partner I’m walking out of the cave. Looks like that bit of advice took hold Kiera
- Did we really think Kellog would just let them in and not spy? Yeah right
- Said it was a turning point. Hmm. That sounds like someone else from the future.
- This is a one-way flight. That can’t bode well for Keira I think.
- You’ve also done whatever the hell you wanted to when it suits you. What happened to #TeamKiera?
- He killed like no other. He terrorized with the best of them. Well that stings @MrL080
- She can’t go home now, you realize that. I thought they kissed & made up. 🙁
- Empires eventually crumble. Oh, don’t worry. In my future that won’t happen And we know this HOW Kellog?
- That would be my rescue team. Yeah, but they only want you for your body. lol
- We didn’t come here to kill anyone, Carlos. Yeah, bad timing with that story Brad.
- Whew! Carlos was saved by the railing.
- Let Travis out! Let Travis out!
- Sorry kid. *crack* This is brutal to watch. Guess Brad REALLY made his choice.
- The failsafe. @alekspaun just turned someone to goo with his ray gun. This is NOT good.
- That’s a gun meant for two hands @alekspaun is toting like a pistol. lol
- Can’t shoot him? Knock his head off with the shotgun instead!
- After the invasion. It won’t matter. You won’t be here. Is that a confirmation of invasion?
- Time’s up. If you’re going to go out—go out with an enormous bang—as a hero.
- I know it doesn’t work that way. Does she “really” get it now?
- They just need a little spackling and paint to fix the VPD after that right?
Continuum Review: 4×05 “The Desperate Hours”