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As promised, the twists, turns, surprises, and revelations are coming fast and furious as we barrel toward our BIG season 1 finale.  And, in addition, there are those wonderful character moments that serve to shed light on our crew and their respective relationships: the unlikely pep talk, the drunken dinner sequence, the hug!  Numerous individual fan contingents seemed particularly thrilled with this episode.  I’m talking about #FOURCLAN, #FIVEHIVE, #SIXPACK, and #FANDROIDS!

And they weren’t the only ones.  Check out some of the online review…

http://www.denofgeek.us/tv/dark-matter/248093/dark-matter-episode-eight-review

“Overall, I get the sense that the writers of Dark Matter know exactly where their characters and storylines are headed. They continue to dole out puzzle pieces in a deliberate and methodical manner.”

Oh, we know exactly where we’re going.  And, when this first season comes to its dramatic conclusion, prepare to have your mind blown.

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http://scifiempire.net/wordpress/dark-matter-episode-8-review-syfys-space-opera-finds-its-secure-footing/

“Slowly the first season of Syfy’s Dark Matter is developing to be the space opera that can actually replace Firefly and Stargate.”

I don’t think want to replace them, only stand side by side with them in the annals of SF television! 

http://www.thetvjunkies.com/dark-matter-episode-eight/

“However, while the mystery and intrigue will always be a major factor in why Dark Matter is so compelling to watch, it’s the small, happier moments that have maintained my interest. The cast has solid chemistry together and it makes scenes like their drunken bonding on the space station add a lot more vibrance to an already entertaining show. The darker moments may be imminent, but if we keep those lighter times along the way, it may be that much easier to endure.”

This.  One of the things I’ve mentioned time and again in interviews is that humor and character moments are so important to the show because they go such a long way toward humanizing our crew.  And the these lighter moments make the darker moments sooo much darker in contrast.  See next episode.

http://www.threeifbyspace.net/2015/07/dark-matter-episode-8-review-revenge-is-a-dish-best-served-cloned/#.Vb0RoXg-AdU

“Why am I asking so many questions?! Because Joseph Mallozzi likes it that way, that’s why! He writes it like this on purpose … and I not-so-secretly love it.”

True.  I love the theorizing, debating, and, especially, the “this doesn’t make sense” critical assumptions that inevitably get upended.  Early on, people were wondering how the show’s premise could be sustained for any extended period.  Well, whaddya think now?

https://bladeofthesashurai.wordpress.com/2015/08/01/a-sashurais-review-dark-matter-season-1×08-its-official-four-is-a-reincarnated-ninja-turtle/

“Hands down the best episode thus far. The very breadth of Science-Fiction really saturates this episode and it’s mystery sub-genre attacks and reveals new elements to our amnesiacs that really sell the need to keep watching and find out the truth.”

Yes, layers upon layers.  Think you’ve got our “misunderstood”/”inherently good” characters figured out.  Let’s resume this discussion next week… 

Finally – hey, check out Akemi’s FIVE-inspired hair!

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Today’s entry is dedicated to my sis!  Happy Birthday!

The twists, turns and revelations come fast and furious as we pick up speed and hurtle through the back half of this season toward our big BIG season finale.  So, what awaits on tonight’s episode of Dark Matter?

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http://www.thetvjunkies.com/dark-matter-episode-eight-preview/

“There’s plenty of action, suspense and, best of all, another big bombshell awaits fans in the episode’s final moments.”

DARK MATTER -- "Episode Nine" Episode 109 -- Pictured: Mark Bendavid as One -- (Photo by: Steve Wilkie/Prodigy Pictures/Syfy)

DARK MATTER — “Episode Nine” Episode 109 — Pictured: Mark Bendavid as One — (Photo by: Steve Wilkie/Prodigy Pictures/Syfy)

http://www.screenspy.com/articles/tv/editorials/the-crew-face-fresh-surprises-in-syfys-dark-matter/

“This week Syfy’s Dark Matter will see the crew making a Space Station stopover for some drunken bonding, a little home cooking, and a spot of old fashioned revenge.”

http://www.threeifbyspace.net/2015/07/dark-matter-episode-8-preview-a-one-way-trip/#.Vbro9Xg-A_U

“Back at the end of episode 6, we knew Six would eventually try to track down the General, the leader of the Protheon Insurrection. This is the man responsible for the destruction of a space station which killed over 10,000 innocents. At the time, Six was a member of this group, but he believed they were fighting for the betterment of his fellow human beings, not killing innocent people to make a political statement. Ever since he found out the General was just fine with collateral damage on such a horrible scale, Six has been planning on finding him and stopping him. That begins now.”

http://www.iol.co.za/tonight/tv-radio/shedding-light-on-dark-matter-1.1892907#.VbqHcHg-CgQ

Some behind the scenes pics of Dark Matter Episode 8…

The crew of The Raza catches up on 200 year old episodes of Game of Thrones.

The crew of The Raza catches up on 200 year old episodes of Game of Thrones.

Director T.W. Peacocke, prepped and ready to go.

Director T.W. Peacocke, prepped and ready to go.

Help yourself!

Help yourself!

Jodelle enjoys a break in the action.

Jodelle enjoys a break in the action.

Welcome to Vega 5…

Who’s up for a little post-episode Periscope Q&A?

As most of you know, I created and started developing Dark Matter back when I was working on Stargate: Atlantis.  The hope was to roll into Dark Matter whenever Stargate ended…which turned out to be a little later than I’d originally expected.  Throw in a year to script and launch the Dark Horse Comics series, the inevitable/interminable wait for the financing to come together on the way to an eventual green light, and we’re talking roughly eight years.  Yes, eight years of waiting but, in that time, eight years of fleshing out the big picture arcs, the characters, their backstories, the moments, and a slew of surprising twists and turns.

There’s nothing I hate more than watching a show that clearly doesn’t have a plan. One thing I promised viewers from the get-go is that we had a plan, a long term (five season) arc that included narrative elements, big and small.  We know where we’re going and, if you come along for the ride, we promise not to keep you hanging.  You will be rewarded with answers – and some of those answers are coming fast and furious from Episodes 106 onwards, culminating in an OMG! finale that will have you jumping out of your seats.

We’ve been afforded the freedom and respect to tell the story we want to tell and this has allowed us to seed the narrative with clues, some subtle and some pretty damn glaring, to future revelations.  I’m always delighted by the post-episode online responses, especially those that catch perceived hints in the story or criticize baffling inconsistencies in the characters.  There was one exchange on an online forum that had one viewer (let’s call her Viewer A) fixate on a seemingly inconsequential exchange in Episode 3.  She was convinced that the inflection of the delivery, the looks exchanged, suggested something more.  Another viewer (Viewer B) dismissed the theory; told her she was reading something into a line that wasn’t there.  Well, all I can say is – Viewer A, before the end of this season, prepare to tell Viewer B: “I told you so!”.

Setups and payoffs!  Setups and payoffs!

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How come our crew only recovered some cash, weapons, an entertainment android, and a woman in stasis from the mystery room?  After all, back in Episode 101, didn’t FIVE refer to the fact that it held “secrets”?  What secrets?!

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Why is ONE so out of place amongst the rest of the crew?  And, if he’s not the real Jace Corso, what the hell is he doing on the ship?

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Why did TWO’s wound magically heal following her ill-fated excursion aboard The Far Horizon?

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How did Hrothgar’s weapons – and pendant – end up on The Raza?

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How did FIVE get out of that airlock?

Screen Shot 2015-07-29 at 6.45.06 PM

What is with the Android and her odd behavior?  She appeared jealous of entertainment bot Wendy and androids shouldn’t feel jealousy.  Why would someone program her with emotions?

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Who was THREE’s old crew that abandoned him on that planet?

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What was going through FIVE’s head when she gave Sarah’s stasis pod that curious look at the end of last episode?

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Who is Cyrus King?

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Who is that creepy old man?  (Oops.  Sorry.  That one’s upcoming.)

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Who wiped their memories?  And why?

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Who the hell is Titch?

We’ve got answers for you, a whole whack of ’em coming over the course of these last six episodes.  Plus many. MANY more – in addition to more questions and surprises – in the seasons to come.  As we await word of a pick-up, we’ve already got our second season game plan and character acts – and if you thought our first season offered up some shockers (see end of episodes 101, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, and 113!) just wait until you see what we’e got in store for you in season 2, leading up to mind-boggling finale that will rival even our first season finale (which, I’m sure you’ll agree after watching it, may seem nigh impossible!).

At the risk of getting way, way ahead of myself – season 3’s arc will be Sci Fi Epic and culminate in a closing episode that will blow the doors off everything that has come before.  Which will lead into season 4’s I-can’t-believe-this-is-really-happening arc that we’ll cap off with an ender that will crash the forums.  Then, all roads – not to mention every arc we’ve set up since the beginning of the show – lead to season 5 where all the pieces of our intricately composed puzzle finally fall into place in dramatically satisfying fashion.  And we’re left with a series finale for the ages.

All this will be yours and more!

Unless some terrible fate befalls me in which case…never mind.

But, hey, let’s back up a bit to the next episode of Dark Matter, Episode 108. What’s in store?

Well, this –

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And this –

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And this –

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And this!

Screen Shot 2015-07-30 at 12.58.41 PM

Well, let’s call it 22 hours and counting.

1. Unlike previous years, 2015 offers a very narrow window in which I can take my annual culinary journey to Japan.  And so, after much back and forth, Akemi and I finalized the dates and I spent the better part of three hours booking flights online. Akemi from Vancouver to Osaka.  My sister from Montreal to Vancouver.  Joe from Vancouver to Osaka.  Daisy from Montreal to Vancouver.  Joe and Akemi from Tokyo to Vancouver.   My sister and Daisy from Vancouver to Montreal.  A series of maddening one way flights, seat selections, upgrades to premium economy, and in-flight meal purchases.  When I was finished, weary but satisfied, I moved on to the hotel bookings…and couldn’t find a room.  At any of the local hotels.  Further investigation on Akemi’s part revealed the reason: Silver Week.

“Once in a while the stars align and Japan’s holiday laws kick in. The result: a 5 day holiday. This is known as “Silver Week” in Japan. It’s named after Golden Week in April / May. It also has a double meaning: “silver” is a common word in Japanese to describe the older generation (Respect for the Aged day hence brings “Silver Week”).

Silver Week is relatively rare: 2015, 2026, 2032, 2037, 2043, 2049. ”

http://www.japan-talk.com/jt/new/silver-week

And so, I’ve had to cancel and push our Japan trip to April of 2016 (To coincide with Akemi’s birthday!) – barring  a change in near-future plans.

2. This morning, Akemi and I visited Granville Island, our usual destination for fresh fruit, veggies and seafood (a shout-out to the gang at http://www.seafoodcitygi.com).  I was walking along, texting, when a unusually concerned-looking Akemi motioned to me.  Out of the corner of my eye, I caught someone a half step behind me.  Assuming he wanted to pass, I slowed down and stepped aside.  He stopped, right behind me.  So I kept walking, and he continued to keep pace.  I stopped.  He stopped, again less than a half a foot beside me.  I moved threw him a look and gave him a once-over: mid-twenties, baseball cap, carrying an enormous backpack and sporting what looked like a do-it-yourself arm cast.  As I fell into conversation with Brian, the owner of the Seafood City, someone at the counter asked the weirdo if he wanted to purchase something.  Weirdo mumbled something and, grudgingly, wandered off.

I didn’t give it a second thought but Akemi was very disturbed by the incident. There was definitely something off about the guy but I’m not sure what was his game plan.  Pickpocket?  Maybe, but it was clear I was keeping my eye on him – which didn’t seem to dissuade him.  And, with the enormous backpack he was carrying, I very much doubt he could have executed a snatch and run.  I almost wanted to surreptitiously follow him around find out what he was up to – but it was clear that Akemi wanted to go home, immediately, so my P.I. gig would have to wait for another time.

3. We paid our weekly visit to White Dwarf Books on 10th Avenue.  I go there to peruse the shelves and pick up new titles while Akemi goes to shower the shop’s dog, an easy-going basset hound named Judd, with affection.  On this day, however, we arrived to the news that Judd had taken a sudden and very bad turn. He was at his local vet and unlikely to survive the day.  Heartbreaking.  In addition to our weekly visits with him, Judd stayed with us for a two week period last year and, in that short time, became sort of an honorary pack member.

Akemi and Judd.

Akemi and Judd.

 4. I received a series of very disquieting, downright bizarre emails this morning that…well…concerned me.  I’ll leave it at that but suffice it to say: LTS.

  5. I’ve still got plenty of today to go.

BTS on Dark Matter Episode 107: Searching the mystery room.

BTS on Dark Matter Episode 107: Searching the mystery room.

So, in Episode 107, the crew gained entrance to the mystery room and we finally found out what it held.

Or did we?

Sure, we found weapons, cash, an entertainment model android and a woman in stasis, but something doesn’t quite line up here.  Remember back in Episode 101 when FIVE was talking to SIX about “the door”.  The dialogue went something like this…

FIVE: A big metal door.  And they keep it locked, always.

SIX: Why?  What’s inside?

FIVE: Secrets.

Secrets?  Hmmm.  There was nothing particularly secretive about the cash or guns. The entertainment model android?  Not really.  The woman in stasis?  Possibly. But, back in Episode 101, FIVE used the plural, “secrets”.

Looked like there were a few locked boxes in that room.  I wonder…

Oh, hey, check it out.  Wendy stunt double (Jennifer Murray) gets blasted by Bubba:

Down and right back up!  Thanks as always to Dark Matter stunt coordinator John Stead for crafting and overseeing the action.

As we move past the halfway mark of season one, we begin to unearth answers, backstories, and surprises.  And Episode 108 will offer up more than a few.  In preparation, check out some of the behind the scenes pics…

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Check out my Dark Matter chat with Fictional Frontiers:

http://www.fictionalfrontiers.podcastpeople.com/posts/61640

The second instalment in my Weird Food Purchase of the Week: Weird Soda Edition:

Some Dark Matter links:

The Summer Studs of SyFy (P.S. After last episode I’m sure you’ll agree they’re missing one!):

http://www.twcc.com/entertainment/galleries/2015/07/the-summer-studs-of-syfy-series#1

An Episode #107 post-mortem:

http://www.thetvjunkies.com/dark-matter-episode-7-postmortem-a-rose-does-not-a-romance-make/?utm_content=bufferd9a13&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

“As we do every week, we talked with Mallozzi all about Episode 7 for more information on Three’s backstory, a look into how some of Wendy’s special talents and skills came about and how things are looking for the Android next week.”

An Episode #107 review:

http://noobist.com/uncategorized/dark-matter-episode-7-review-recap/

“Snap, Crackle ‘n Pop. The latest episode of Dark Matter was the sexiest episode thus far, at least suggestively anyway. Brace yourself, because Dark Matter definitely went there this week. The Raza crew finally gained access to the secret room, we found out Three isn’t a jerk ass after all, and One and Two finally hooked up on “Episode 7” of Dark Matter.”

Another Episode #107 review:

http://www.mikesfilmtalk.com/2015/07/25/dark-matter-episode-seven-review/

“Each episode is reveals more about the crew and each character is becoming well rounded and three dimensional as a result. Zoie Palmer is becoming more endearing with each episode as are the rest of the crew. Anthony Lemke rocks it this week with his heel with heart story and the entire cast are hitting their stride performance wise.”

What was the best scene from Episode #107?  Read the review and vote for your favorite here:

http://www.spoilertv.com/2015/07/dark-matter-episode-7-review-redemption.html?utm_source=TrendingNow&utm_medium=WhatsHot

“This episode shed a lot of light on Three and left fans with a lot of things to ponder. […] Only time will tell, but I suggest buckling in because things are only going to keep escalating as the second half of the season gears up to FTL speed.”

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And some past favorites!

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Nutritional yeast…

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The Triple Down…

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Dragon’s Blood hot sauce with guest taster Carl Binder…

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Squid brand fish sauce…

 

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