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Going to San Diego Comic Con?  So is Dark Matter!  In addition to our Thursday night (7:15 p.m. to 8:15 p.m., Room 6BCF) panel in which Melissa O’Neil (TWO), Anthony Lemke (THREE), Jodelle Ferland (FIVE), Roger Cross (SIX), and Exec Producers Jay Firestone, Vanessa Piazza and I spill on the show’s first season, we’ll also be doing an autograph signing at the Dark Horse Comics booth (2615) on Thursday at 5 p.m. and again on Friday at 3 p.m.  If you’re in the neighborhood, drop by and say hi.

I look forward to catching up with all our new friends:

https://tvgeektalk.com/news/dark-matter-heading-to-san-diego-comic-con/

Some great Dark Matter-related links for you to check out…

http://noobist.com/reviews/dark-matter-episode-4-review-recap/

“Bravo! The fourth episode of Dark Matter was the total package. It had humor, drama, action, and suspense. The Raza crew finally made it to the space station for much needed refueling and repairs, but their efforts to remain under the radar were an epic fail on “Episode 4” of Dark Matter. Spoiler alert!”

http://www.mikesfilmtalk.com/2015/07/04/dark-matter-episode-1-4-recapreview/

“Dark Matter continues to move smoothly forward working as a mystery/thriller/science fiction series with an infinite path of possibilities. All the actors are hitting their stride and Zoie Palmer is a joy to watch as The Android. Her almost childlike approach to the crew and their issues is a delight. ”

http://thedailyfandom.com/dark-matter-episode-four-review-facing-their-criminal-past/

“After a somewhat claustrophobic episode that focused on the Android and the Raza ship, ‘Episode Four’ takes us to a place that had been mentioned for a while now: the Space Station. In this episode, our characters learn that they might not be as free to walk around as normal citizens as they thought.”

http://www.tv-eh.com/2015/07/03/review-back-to-square-one-on-dark-matter/

“We’re back at Square One.” Indeed you are, Two, but viewers—and every member of the Raza—have some important pieces to the puzzle. If only they’d trust each other enough to share what they’ve learned.”

http://scifiempire.net/wordpress/dark-matter-episode-4-review-directed-by-amanda-tapping/

“Episode 4 breaks with the first three episodes by introducing the larger world I which the show is set. All six human characters as well as The Android (Zoie Palmer) developed a lot more colour this week by having fun and acting mischievous as the ship they travel docks at a space station.”

http://www.idiotbox.co.uk/dark-matter-review-episode-four-33936/

“All in all another successful episode, the character interaction was superb, particularly between One and Three, the writing was sharp and the mysteries continue to deepen and intrigue. I normally give a show four episodes to convince me to stick around, well we’re that far in now and I’m going nowhere.”

Loving these viewer video reviews:

GeekonReview review last Friday’s Defiance, Killjoys, and Dark Matter:

https://youtu.be/axoeaebUSfw

QuickTV’s Best & Worst TV Shows of 2015 (so far!):

https://youtu.be/SDqiM8Z-VkQ

Mailbag!

daithi82 writes: “Since the show started off as a graphic novel are there any plans for any tie ins through other media such as webcomics, mini episodes or anything like that? Assuming the show gets picked up for a second series obviously.”

Answer: I’d love to see alt .media tie-ins although, if the show does get picked up for a second season, I’dbe too busy writing/producing to be involved. :(

Sylvia writes: “My memory is fading…but – did not 5 have a brother?  And they lived in a palace…  Perhaps the kid on the table is her brother?”

Answer: In episode #101, FIVE recalled a brother – but told TWO the recollection wasn’t hers.  In episode #103, TWO posits the theory that FIVE has all of their memories downloaded into her subconscious.  A recent episode strongly hints at the owner of said memory.  As for the dead kid…we’ll find out his connection to FIVE sooner than later.

no1zoiepalmerfan writes: ” In the credits it has the actors who play ONE thru FIVE listed first then it says “with Roger Cross and Zoie Palmer”. Does that mean Roger and Zoie are considered recurring?”

Answer: Despite the credit placements, it’s a true ensemble show.

Ponytail writes: “I can’t remember what they did with his body. Is he still on board?”

Answer: TWO said they needed to jettison the body before they got to the next space station.  Since last episode (#104) took place on a space station, it’s safe to assume the body was long gone by the time they docked.

Belouchi writes: “Aussi qu est ce qu’il se passe avec la serie transporteur, c etait pas mal???”

Answer: Je ne said rien au sujet de transporteur. :(

antisocialbutterflie: “My understanding of the underlying science behind mag boots is that the magnets need to be able to disengage and reengage, i.e., electromagnets. If this were the case, shouldn’t the pulse that knocked out the Android have also disengaged the mag boots and sent her floating into space?”

Answer: Yes, if they’re electromagnets that would be correct.

Furioso writes: “I ask because I’ve noticed a big push for Killjoys on both networks and on social media (even billboards) but practically nothing for Dark Matter. […]  What I want to know is why no love for Dark Matter? Is this something that bugs you? Or are you used to it from all those years on Stargate?”

Answer: I’ve already talked about the great job the gang at SyFy PR and Marketing have done supporting the show, from their first kick-ass trailer to a continued online push.  At the end of the day, you can’t worry about what’s going on with other shows, you just need to focus on making the best show possible and doing your best to get the word out.  So help us get the word out!

Scott writes: “Also, random off-topic question, but does Space have access to the previews of the next episode of DM, or is that Syfy-exclusive? Because Space keeps showing previews of the next episode of Killjoys, but there’s never any previews for the next episode of DM.”

Answer: No, they should be able to air previews.  Not sure why they aren’t.

Tam Dixon writes: “What kind of place would you look for in Toronto?”

Answer: Ideally, somewhere downtown within walking distance of a grocery store (for Akemi) and park (for the dogs).

JeffW writes: “And how are Bubba and Lulu doing? Have they re-adjusted to life in Vancouver?”

Answer: They’re doing well.  Lulu is enjoying the sun – but has seemed down.  Bubba, meanwhile, is plain slowing down.  Old age. :(

Ponytail writes: “How come ONE and THREE don’t just tell what really happened?”

Answer: THREE doesn’t tell because he sees an opportunity in keeping ONE’s secret and ONE isn’t telling perhaps because he fears the reaction he’d get from the rest of the crew.  As THREE points out, it does make him the lead suspect in their communal memory wipe.

2cats writes: “1) Why did Six go to the clinic when the Raza has a med-bay? Couldn’t the Android run the table diagnostic and treat him?”

Answer: The ship’s med-bay isn’t equipped with what is needed to generate a skin graft.

“2) How did One and Three escape the chairs if only the chest wires were loosened? Their hands and feet were tied separately.”

Answer: Presumably, with a little more maneuvering room, the same way they loosened the chest constraints.

“3) Was it difficult filming the face-to-face between One and Jace?”

Answer: Difficult, no.  A little complicated and time consuming?  Yes.

“4) Was that a mini-electric car motoring by in the background?”

Answer: Why, yes, it was.  Station security.

“5 Was that Akemi playing the coughing lady in the clinic, wearing the brown boots?”

Answer: Nope.  She’s holding out for a larger role.  Season 2 maybe?

Mike A. writes: “In the tease at the end of episode three, Jayce was on Cygni-4, and in this episode, they were all on Shaofu-2, correct? ”

Answer: Correct.

2cats writes: “I assume, now that the crew is broke, the David Hewlett character will soon make an appearance. He’s their agent – right?”

Answer: It seems like a good bet we will be seeing Tabor Calchek very soon…

DP writes: “Would someone who was a sociopath because of childhood experiences still be so if he/she had amnesia? Would a born psychopath still have the skills to manipulate people and pretend to be normal if he/she had amnesia?”

Answer: Very interesting that you would ask those particular questions.  Maybe we’ll find out.

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So, tomorrow Japan plays the U.S. in the finals of the Women’s World Cup.  Despite the fact that they’re playing the match here in Vancouver, Akemi refuses to go watch it live – not because she doesn’t care but because she cares too damn much! I fear that, if we do go and Japan loses, she’ll be depressed for weeks (as opposed to the mere days brought on by a t.v. loss).

She is clearly emotionally invested in her national team as evidenced by her reactions to Wednesday’s semi-final game…

England scores on Japan:

Japan misses a scoring opportunity:

Speaking of emotional investment and passionate responses – what did you all think of Dark Matter’s fourth episode?

I’ll hold off on my detailed discussion for now but will say all of these early episodes continue hints to future revelations and payoffs.  Watch again and pay close attention!

Meanwhile, others have weighed in with their thoughts on Episode 4:

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

“The latest Dark Matter episode gave the crew a serious reality check after a disastrous stop over at the space station. Not only did they get a sense of how much danger they’re in, some of them got a taste of just how dangerous they really are.”

http://www.spoilertv.com/2015/07/dark-matter-episode-4-review-dynamic.html?utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Twitter&utm_campaign=Echobox&utm_term=Autofeed#link_time=1435982815

“We’ve been insanely spoiled this summer with extraordinary programming, but even in such a crowded landscape Dark Matter shines like a super nova.”

https://tvgeektalk.com/recaps/a-tilt-a-shift-and-one-times-2-makes-one-in-dark-matter-episode-four/

” In less than an hour, the writers managed to shine more light on our beloved characters and their pasts than we have seen in the first 3 episodes combined.”

http://www.threeifbyspace.net/2015/07/dark-matter-episode-4-review-evil-clones-corrupt-casinos-and-my-3-am-conspiracy-theory/

“Two creates one of the best comedy teams since Abbott and Costello when she pairs up One and Three. They both object to the decision, but she shuts them up by giving them each the same “I don’t trust him, I want you to keep an eye on him” excuse. The look on her face after they both take the bait so easily is that of an exasperated mother dealing with two unruly boys.”

And here is an interview with actor Marc Bendavid (ONE) who pulled double duty in last night’s episode:

http://scifiandtvtalk.typepad.com/scifiandtvtalk/2015/07/one-of-a-kind-interview-with-dark-matters-marc-bendavid.html

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I was in the costume department, talking to Dark Matter costume designer Noreen Landry when I noticed the pictures of the dogs lining the back wall.  How cute, I thought.  A different dedicated dog for each episode.  And then, on closer scrutiny, I realized that it was much more than that.  Yes, a different dog for each episode.  And, yes, each dog with a different look.  But each different look was on theme, a little teaser of every one of our episodes…

Episode 1: Space Dog

Episode 1: Space Dog

Appropriately enough, in our first episode, the crew awakens on a spaceship.

Episode 2: Miner dog

Episode 2: Miner dog

In our second episode, the crew assists a mining colony in fending off an attack by a powerful multi-planetary corporation.

Episode 3: Space suit dog.

Episode 3: Space suit dog.

In our third episode, the Android (and later ONE and SIX) undertake a perilous EVA.

Episode 4: Casino dog?

Episode 4: Casino dog?

In our fourth episode…well, I’ll let the above dog pic offer a hint.

Yes, tonight’s the night.  Dark Matter is BACK with an all-new episode, this one directed by amazing Amanda Tapping (Stargate’s Samantha Carter).  She did a brilliant job on this episode and, in the time she spent with us, garnered a whole new fan contingent amongst our cast and crew.

If you weren’t around reading this blog back in February, here are my behind-the-scenes write-ups on “The Amanda Tapping Experience”:

https://josephmallozzi.wordpress.com/2015/02/11/february-11-2015-introducing-dark-matter-editor-wendy-hallam-martin-amanda-tapping-takes-the-directing-reins/

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https://josephmallozzi.wordpress.com/2015/02/12/february-12-2015-space-travels-with-amanda-tapping/

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https://josephmallozzi.wordpress.com/2015/02/13/february-13-2015-back-in-familiar-inertial-dampened-climate-controlled-faster-than-light-territory/

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https://josephmallozzi.wordpress.com/2015/02/19/february-19-2015-a-casting-hint-cat-t-shirt-day-on-shaofu-2/

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https://josephmallozzi.wordpress.com/2015/02/20/february-20-2015-director-amanda-tappings-last-day-birthday-bash-on-shaofu-2-a-visit-to-the-space-station-clinic/

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A few episode #104 previews:

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http://www.thetvjunkies.com/dark-matter-preview-where-the-raza-goes-trouble-follows/

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http://www.spoilertv.com/2015/07/dark-matter-episode-4-advance-preview.html

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http://www.threeifbyspace.net/2015/06/dark-matter-episode-4-preview-face-off/

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The past comes back to haunt members of the crew during a stopover at a space station, during which Four makes a stunning discovery, while Two and Five learn that some games of chance come with surprising risks. Elsewhere, Six receives some unwanted attention at a local clinic; and One and Three’s attempts to sell the weapons in their cargo hold lands them at a dangerous disadvantage.

I’ll be live tweeting both the east cost and west coast broadcasts!  Hope to see you all online tonight!

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1) I went through the vent.

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This is my favorite scene in this episode.  A lot of nice little beats here, from FIVE’s slow bullet spill to THREE’s uncertain weighing of his guns.

Rehearsing the standoff.

Rehearsing the standoff.

2) You might want to hurry.

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This scene in the final cut is a shortened version of what was originally envisioned.  From the script:

ONE, SIX and FIVE head out. TWO trains her weapons on THREE and FOUR.

THREE: Is that really necessary?

By way of an answer, she motions for them to raise their hands – a little higher. They do.

—After a cutaway to the rescue, we cut back to the bridge where:

TWO still has her guns on THREE and FOUR. Beat.

THREE: Look, they’re back on the ship, we’re safely in FTL. We done here?

She doesn’t move.

THREE: It wasn’t personal. We were –

TWO: Just looking out for yourselves.

THREE: Looking out for all of us.

Off TWO –

THREE: If the shields had failed while we were waiting for them to haul him in, we’d be singing a different tune now. We were lucky.

He has a point. She lowers her guns. THREE and FOUR lower their hands.

THREE: Alright. I’ll be in my quarters. Let me know when we get to the station.

He starts off. She stops him with –

TWO: Not so fast. We’ve got to finish something first.

Off a confused…

— We SEGUE TO THREE in the hot seat, finishing up his lie detector test.

3) You would’ve done the same for us.

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In the original script, this scene played out much differently.  ONE gets an injured but still conscious SIX to the infirmary – where they are later joined by FIVE and the Android.  Executive Producer Jay Firestone felt that the episode needed more jeopardy in order to a build to its satisfying conclusion, and so the original scene was rewritten and replaced by this much more dynamic sequence.

4) We move on.

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Well, whaddya know?  THREE was telling the truth after all!

We come away with three conclusions from this scene:

1. Even if one of the crew members was responsible for their communal mindwipe, he/she doesn’t remember.

2. The communal mind wipe may have been an accident, the result of a crude program designed to target someone else’s memories.

3. In TWO’s words: “Finding out whoever did this is going to be next to impossible.”

Ah, well.  Two out of three anyway.

5) Looking out for number one.

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This was another scene that played out a little differently from the way it was originally scripted.

In the script, he leans in and kisses her.  She pulls back.  He immediately backs off and apologizes.  There is an awkward exchange and then, he leaves.

I actually preferred this original version which made TWO more emphatic and clear but, in this instant, production concerns necessitated a tighter version.

6) One final round of discovery!

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Just as we draw closer to some answers, a few more questions are thrown our way. How did FIVE know where to look?  Does this suggest some sort of past connection to the mysterious key card and the gun?  Will we be learning more about the key card as the season progresses?  Will that gun pay off in some way further on down the line?  Do the writers actually have a game plan?  Tune in to find out!

7) Goodnight!

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Ah, the bookend.  We conclude our opposite in much the same we started – with our Android on the bridge, giving the crew the 411.  THREE seals up his vent, SIX touches up that nasty burn on his arm, while FOUR considers – oh, yeah! – that ring he discovered in the puzzle box.  Yet another loose end we’ll presumably be getting around to sooner than later.

Much sooner.

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8) Jace.  Jace Corso.

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So, after everything our crew went through, the burgeoning suspicion and shifting alliances, the suspected sabotage and lie detector test, we must finally come to terms with the fact that we’ll probably never know who was lying.

Until about five (show) minutes later with the final reveal of an all too familiar face sitting at a bar on some space station.  The guy, a dead ringer for one, says he’s been after The Raza for a while now, looking to catch up with someone.

Wonder who?

P.S. This concluding WTF?!! scene was shot by Episode 4 director Amanda Tapping since this Cygni 4 bar set up was shot concurrently with the upcoming bar, lounge, casino, and back room scenes in #104.

PPS.  Isn’t that space station establisher amazing?  Kudos to Lawren Bancroft-Wilson and our VFX team on the gorgeous visuals.

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1) Yes, I am an excellent information source.  Thank you.

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And the hits just keep on coming.  More bad news in the form of gamma radiation being emitted from the remains of a Type 1a supernova.

The revised reveal of our ship from the gang at VFX:

Again, the challenge in scenes like these is to keep the pace up and all of our characters alive (in other words, involved either directly through dialogue or indirectly through cutaways).  There’s a lot of ground to cover here but flashes of humor go a long way toward breaking up the exposition, something I learned from my occasional technobabble-filled days on Stargate.  These beats, mainly involving our Android, go a long way toward humanizing her character, making her more sympathetic, and adding dimension to her seemingly straight-forward personality.  I’ve noticed some people bumping on these seemingly emotional responses.  At times, she is almost childlike in her reactions.  “But she an Android!  It doesn’t make sense!”.  It doesn’t?  Sort of like…

2) On the other hand, sometimes she makes a lot of sense.  Good luck.

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Why is she wearing a spacesuit?  “But she an Android! It doesn’t make sense!”. Until, of course, it does.  The Android volunteers to effects repairs by executing a perilous EVA.  And THREE is only to happy/relieved to let her go.  As far as he’s concerned, it’s nothing personal – because he doesn’t really see our Android as a sentient entity imbued with a personality.  At best, a machine with a  personality template, but certainly not some”thing” to worry about.  On the surface, his attitude may seem cold but an argument can be made that he does have a point. But let’s table that debate for later…

The ever-sassy Zoie Palmer suits up!

The ever-sassy Zoie Palmer suits up!

3) That’s why I like her.  She’s just like the rest of us.

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Amid all the suspicion, the shipboard paranoia, and the overwhelming feeling of isolation, personal connections are made and it’s interesting to see who gravitates towards who and how these relationships evolve over time.  One of my favorites – and one of my favorites to write – is the friendship between these two very different crew mates: the imposing, grounded, wizened SIX and the diminutive, impulsive, young FIVE.  He plays the role of the protector, offering words of comfort here but, in the situations, it’s often FIVE who offers up the words of wisdom, in this instance when she says: “She’s just like us.”, which echoes her “Well, same with them maybe, right?” in episode 102 in which she drew a parallel between the Android’s “killbot” programming and the crew’s apparent past disposition toward violence.  When you think about it, the Android IS just like them in many ways (the fact that they’re all starting over after having their memories wiped being the most obvious), but she’s ESPECIALLy like FIVE: well-intentioned and a key member of the crew, but immature in many ways and incredibly lonely. And, speaking of connections, the relationship between FIVE and the Android is another one of my favorites that develops over the course of this first season.

4) I sincerely hope you’re right.  But if anything goes wrong out there, it will be your only chance.

Running through the Android's departure scene.

Running through the Android’s departure scene.

The Android suits up and, despite the obvious dangers, elects to forge ahead and complete the crucial repairs – while FIVE and SIX look on back on the bridge.  I really want to say more about this scene but, for time being, I’ll hold off.  Just make a mental note – and then let’s come back it later in the season.  Plink!  That’s the sound of the penny dropping.

Rehearsing on the bridge.

Rehearsing on the bridge.

5) Too late.

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The Android is successful – but ends up disabled by the electro-static charges.  A little about this sequence, in pictures…

Early set construction.  What a difference a coat of paint makes!

Early set construction. What a difference a coat of paint makes!

Shooting on the day.

Shooting on the day.

In order to reach the trench, the Android must walk down an extreme-angled wall, something easy enough to do in zero-g, but a little trickier to demonstrate in our Earth-based production environment.  So this is what we did…

We set up a section of the trench, floor in the foreground and walls in the background.

We set up a section of the trench, floor in the foreground and walls in the background.

We enlist our stand-in, the lovely Krysta Lee.

We enlist our stand-in, the lovely Krysta Lee.

With 1st AD Grant Boyle supporting her, our stand-in walks down one angle section and up the next.  The shot is a close-up of her booted feet:

I trimmed the head off the second shot and we were good to go!

P.S. The coupling housed within the section of the retractable section of the trench is a visual effects, compliments of our VFX team lead by Supervisor Lawren Bancroft-Wilson.

6) Whoa, whoa, whoa.  We’re on the clock here, remember?

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THREE makes FOUR another pitch and, this time, he’s a little more successful in having his would-be ally hear him out.  Why?  Because, from a purely logical standpoint, he makes sense.  As TWO will later tell ONE: “We felt it was worth the risk to save the Android; they didn’t.”

7) Or now.  We can talk about this now.

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There’s nothing I like more than a good stand-off – and this is a great one.  After THREE and FOUR seal themselves in the bridge with the intention of jumping to FTL, FIVE shorts the door console, allowing the rest of the crew access to the ship’s nerve center.  The shots of ONE, TWO, and SIX walking in guns raised – and the complimentary shot of THREE and FOUR drawing on them – never fails spike the adrenaline every time I watch this act-ending sequence.

Hey!  Check out these behind-the-scenes vids at SyFy.com featuring Marc Bendavid (ONE), stunt coordinator John Stead, VFX supervisor Lawren Bancroft-Wilson, and production designer Ian Brock:

http://www.syfy.com/darkmatter/videos/dark-matter-backstage-episode-1

http://www.syfy.com/darkmatter/videos/dark-matter-designing-the-raza-sets

http://www.syfy.com/darkmatter/videos/dark-matter-building-the-raza-vfx

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Picking up where we left off yesterday – let’s continue our rundown of Dark Matter‘s third episode..

1) So somebody in this room wiped our memories and probably killed that kid.

You're probably all wondering why I've gathered you here...

You’re probably all wondering why I’ve gathered you here…

TWO comes clean about what she’s learned – the fact that someone did, in fact, upload a program into the stasis pods that targeted their memories.  This not only suggests someone among them was responsible for their collective amnesia, but also strongly suggests that many of their memories may now reside in FIVE’s subconscious.  Then, they suddenly drop out of FTL and the Android announces there is something wrong with the ship.

Some pretty major revelations!   Sure, but the aspect of this scene that has garnered a surprising amount of attention is the fish tank in the background. Gorgeous but, alas, not an actual fish tank.  You’ll notice in this episode, and moving forward, that the screen at the back of the mess changes, cycling through a variety of different Earth-based nature videos – a little touch of home for our distant crew.

2) Dead bodies, hacked stasis pods, now this?  There’s a whole lot of things going wrong on this ship.

Oh, there's your problem right there.

Oh, there’s your problem right there.

The Android informs them there’s a problem with the ship.  THREE suspects sabotage or, at least, a sabotage of the ship’s diagnostics – and he wastes no time pointing the finger of blame at our resident tech monkey, FIVE.  Big brother SIX predictably rises to her defense and, again, we get a taste of how the various shipboard alliances and relationships are shaping up (something we explore over the course of this episode, this entire first season, and beyond).

I love these types of scenes that include the entire crew but, truth be told, they are incredibly challenging to shoot.  Not only does the director have to cover seven different characters, but he/she also has to keep the scene dynamic.  No easy task, particularly given the fact that exposition drives a huge chunk of this scene.

3) No, not the door.  What’s behind the door.

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Thought we’d forgotten all about the mystery door, huh?

In an obvious attempt to win himself an ally – and possibly get himself inside – THREE shows FOUR the big metal door.  Anthony Lemke and Alex Mallari Jr. are great together here and I especially love this scene because it offers up a rare glimpse of FOUR’s dryer than dry sense of humor.

4) We’re bad company.

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SIX is really the only other crew member capable of going toe to toe with TWO, and he does so here – a follow-up to their initial clash on the bridge.  Only three episodes in and fractures are beginning to show.  And, by the way, he’s not wrong about the dangers present on the ship – and the fact that it’s no place for a  “kid”. As for his stab at TWO’s reasons for keeping FIVE around…well, we’ll have to wait and see.

5) It’s chocolate protein pudding day!

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The crew sits down to a new-fashioned lie detector test compliments of the ship’s Android who monitors their physiological responses for tells.  I noticed a few people who watched this sequence commented along the lines of: “Why are they taking turns answering each question?!  It doesn’t make sense!”  Dudes, seriously?  The jumping between the various crew members answering the same question is a visual conceit, a fun shorthand that touches on everyone’s responses without having to cycle through each individual session.  The sequence, edited by the marvelous Teresa Hannigan, is accompanied by a terrific score compliments of Brad Pinkerton.

Coincidentally (or not!) the episode aired on Friday, June 26th which, it turns out, WAS Chocolate Pudding Day!

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Maybe the kid IS psychic!

6) We’re not asking.

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2, 4, and 6 pay 3 a visit so they can ask him to take the lie detector test.  He refuses because, as he puts it, he doesn’t “trust that robot”.  If you devised a drinking game in which you’d have to do a shot every time THREE uses the term “Android”, you’d go very thirsty.  What’s of particular interest in this scene  is the fact that FOUR is among the trio who strong-arms THREE, reinforcing the point he made earlier during the training room sequence: He wants answers, dammit! 7) If you shoot him, you may skew the results.

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Hey, you know who I love?  The Android.  She’s a blast to write for because she’s a delightfully humorous character – played by a delightfully humorous actress (Zoie Palmer).  After informing the crew of the potential pitfalls of shooting THREE, she proceeds to grill him…

The Android detects lies AND reads palms!

The Android detects lies AND reads palms!

And, just when we start getting some answers, the proceedings are interrupted by another shipboard emergency.  This one worse.  MUCH worse!

Some Dark Matter-related links to check out: Ratings – http://www.tvwise.co.uk/2015/06/dark-matter-opens-big-for-syfy-uk-with-nearly-400k-viewers/ Whoa!  An incisive analysis of the show and its characters.  The author picked up on certain story elements others have missed.  A very interesting read: http://tv-remote-viewing.com/2015/06/27/dark-matter-walk-on-the-wild-side/ Another very interesting read: http://www.philpercs.com/2015/06/syfys-dark-matter-and-moral-aspects-of-personal-identity.html “In the show, the memory loss serves as a plot device to allow formerly evil characters to explore a newfound goodness. But, more than making for an interesting show, if my intuition that this is a plausible response in this situation, I think this suggests something deeper about us.” Melissa O’Neil (TWO) interviews Anthony Lemke (THREE): http://www.space.ca/show/dark-matter/episode/melissa-oneil-interviews-anthony-lemke/646421/ Anthony Lemke (THREE) interviews Melissa O’Neil (TWO): http://www.space.ca/show/dark-matter/episode/anthony-lemke-interviews-melissa-oneil/646418/

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So, what did everyone think of Dark Matter’s third episode?  Questions? Concerns?  Theories?  Got it all figured out?  Who wiped their memories?  Why? What’s behind the big metal door?  What’s the significance of FOUR’s ring?  Who killed the boy?

Check out my weekly episode debrief with TheTVJunkies’ Bridget Liszewski for some additional hints:

http://www.thetvjunkies.com/dark-matter-episode-3-postmortem-the-real-jace-corso/?utm_content=buffer3b631&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

This episode was written by former Stargate Executive Producer Martin Gero who has been busy of late, working on his new show, Blindspot, which premieres September 21st on NBC.  While our first episode focused on the mystery surrounding our crew and the second episode was more an action-driven entry, episode 3 delves into our characters, shifting alliances, burgeoning shipboard paranoia.

1) I hope you’re all enjoying a hearty breakfast.

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There’s nothing I like more than a good bookend and the scene of our Android, standing on the bridge playing the role of cruise director, offers just that.  It does a nice job of visually conveying a pervasive sense of loneliness – her, standing alone, then cutting to our crew who, though enjoying a communal meal, are seemingly equally alone with their own thoughts.

Setting up the mess table scene.

Setting up the mess table scene.

Until THREE breaks the silence – allowing them all a much-needed cathartic release.  Ultimately, THREE is odd man out, left alone with his thoughts – and everyone else’s leftovers.

2) You wanna play a game or something?

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Perhaps no one is feeling more lonely than FIVE who, already feeling like an outsider, can’t convince anyone to spend some time with her.  SIX is exhausted, ONE is busy reading and FOUR – well, he’s got other things on his mind.  By the way, ONE references the book he is reading as “a classic”, but we never get a good look at the cover.  Like most everything else in this show, this seemingly innocuous element will come back later in the season – but for now, I’d like you all to guess at the title.  Guess correctly and I’ll send you a copy of the book!

Jodelle Ferland (FIVE) also takes the time to read a classic.

Jodelle Ferland (FIVE) also takes the time to read a classic.

FIVE finds herself back in the ship’s vents, exploring its maze-like labyrinth.  Her search strangely, inexplicably (?) takes her to a small utility room in the ship’s underbelly where she makes a horrifying discovery: a dead body!  Dum dum DAAA!

3) Did you want to organize a funeral; prepare parting remarks?

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A scan of the body reveals he was a young boy, coincidentally (?) around FIVE’s age, who died of a single gunshot wound.  ONE immediately jumps to the conclusion that one of them may have been responsible.  TWO dismisses not so much the notion but the very prospect of considering the possibility.  She sees the futility in and suggests they move on.  This, of course, does not sit well with ONE who finds her decision, and seeming lack of compassion, objectionable.

Running thru the infirmary scene.

Running thru the infirmary scene.

The dead boy is played by a terrific young actor named Gage Munroe.  Wait!  How do I know he’s terrific?  Because I watched him deliver a great performance – beyond just playing dead on an infirmary table and gurney.  When?  Well, suffice it to say we’ll be exploring this particular mystery in an upcoming episode.

4) Have fun playing with your stick.

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Not to be so easily dissuaded, THREE drops in on FOUR, seeing in him a like-minded soul guided by self-interest.  And he’s correct.  Up to a certain point.  FOUR may be as mercenary as THREE, but he’s much more even-keeled, logic-driven over emotionally motivated.  THREE makes his pitch and FOUR politely hears him out, before turning him down – with the understanding that HE feels the time isn’t right.  He’s not saying no, just no for now.

I can’t move on from this scene without mentioning two things.  The first is Anthony Lemke’s ad-lib “Okay, have fun playing with your stick!” that almost had me burst out laughing at the monitors the second is Alex Mallari Jr.’s incredible dedication to his role, specifically his mastery of the various weapons in that training room.  Over the course of the season, you’ll note, he uses them all – with seeming deadly precision.  Chalk it up to Alex’s hard work, dexterity, and skill.

5) What if some of our memories were…what if they weren’t all gone?

Setting up the shot.

Setting up the shot.

A nice bonding moment between FIVE and SIX (did I mention how much I love these two together) in which she gives voice to what we already kind of suspect. Something lead her to that room; that body.  The kid was her age.  She probably knew him.  She feels bad because she DOESN’T feel bad – or, maybe, should feel worse.  SIX attempts to console her and talks about fresh starts (a recurring theme throughout this episode and the series as a whole).  In the comfort and connection of the moment, FIVE suggests that, maybe, all of their memories aren’t exactly gone.  Damn, it’s so hard to keep secrets on a spaceship!

6) She has all our memories in her head and you knew it!

You do NOT want to get on SIX's bad side.

You do NOT want to get on SIX’s bad side.

As I was saying: secrets.  The worst part about them is when they get out.  And such is the case here when an angry SIX barges onto the bridge and accuses TWO of keeping the truth from them: that FIVE has everyone’s memories hidden away in her subconscious.  TWO calmly informs him that she wanted to confirm it as fact first before sharing the information.  SIX is far from convinced however…

Let’s check out some Dark Matter reviews:

http://www.mikesfilmtalk.com/2015/06/28/syfys-dark-matter-promising-space-opera/

“This is a promising new show and one that already keeps the interest level high and has the viewer trying to guess where the series will go from this excellent beginning.”

http://www.threeifbyspace.net/2015/06/dark-matter-episode-3-review-trust-no-one-except-maybe-three/

“The Understatement of the Year award, from last night’s episode of Dark Matter, goes to One – “We may have lost our memories, but I think it’s pretty safe to say we didn’t lose our personalities.” And as we get to know them, seven distinct, conflicting, mistrusting, potentially deceitful personalities are emerging. Isn’t it great?”

http://www.spoilertv.com/2015/06/dark-matter-episode-3-review-electric.html?utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Facebook&utm_campaign=Echobox&utm_term=Autofeed#link_time=1435464431

“This show has proven that it has a strong grasp of who these characters are and this episode does an outstanding job of further developing them. Already we’re beginning to see character growth as their shared experiences are having an effect on all of them.”

And these Dark Matter interviews:

Actor Anthony Lemke, Dark Matter’s THREE, chats with The Action Elite:

http://theactionelite.com/2015/06/anthony-lemke-interview/

“I believe really strongly in folks with creative minds and active imaginations and I think science fiction or fantasy speaks to those people. I think it’s a positive thing to be an adult and maintain a youthful imagination and creativity moving forward. Plus, I think we are actively engaged in shaping the future. People who make sci-fi and people who read sci-fi and are part of that community and directly involved in shaping what our future looks like.”

Actress Melissa O’Neil, Dark Matter’s TWO, chats with the Calgary Herald:

http://calgaryherald.com/entertainment/television/calgary-actress-melissa-oneil-charts-new-path-with-sci-fi-series

“He saw the breakdown for this character and said, ‘You have to audition,’” says O’Neil, in an interview from her home in Toronto. “I was in the middle of callbacks and had the chance to take over a leading part on a Broadway show for a few months or keep auditioning for a TV show. (My agent) really encouraged me to take a chance. He said, ‘You’ve already played that part in Toronto. Do something new.’ And I’m so glad I did. Because it’s been such a ride.”

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