Dark Matter ‘Episode Three’ Review: Trust No One, Except the Android

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WARNING: This review contains spoilers

Having established the basics in the the two-part pilot, in Episode Three (the episode titles are as simplistic as the names of the characters) the “crew” is presented with the opportunity to arrive at the station, sell the ship and split up to start new lives. At least that’s what Three suggests. The others don’t see it that way because of the big elephant in the room: who did this? who were they before? It’s a big mystery that a lot of them can’t let go.

There’s also the fact that Five has found a dead kid somewhere in the ship, which only makes speculation on who’s the culprit starts once again. Five, whom I already mentioned how much she reminds me of River Tam, is the most sympathetic towards him because she thinks she might have known him before she lost her memory.

Six confronts Two on the fact that Five believes that she has all their memories in her subconscious. At the end of the day, this is only what she says, they cannot know for sure (yet). One of her dreams was about one of them sabotaging the station, which I guess we’ll find out in the future episodes whether it happens or not. Six tells Two he doesn’t trust Five, even though he was defending her from Three before (does anyone else feel like they’re watching an episode of The Numberjacks?)

The android says that there’s something wrong with the ship as yet more speculation and theories on a possible sabotage from one of them emerge. The Android tries to help them revealing that she can actually detect if one of them is lying. Which, let’s be honest, takes a lot from the exciting part of trying finding out who we can trust.

dark matter - episode three - the daily fandom

In the middle of the interrogation, the android detects yet another problem with the ship: radiation will kill them by within 3 hours. She (ah, the eternal debate on whether it’s an ‘it’ or a ‘he/she’) volunteers to go outside to fix the problem even though there’s a high risk due to an electrostatic discharge. This is obviously an exercise so the others will trust the android. She succeeds but she can’t come back because she’s been hit and shut down.

The team is divided between those who want to move on and leave the android behind (Three and Four) and those who want to go save her (One, Two, Five and Six). This is the typical sci-fi debate on the worth of an android’s life, only that the show resolves it in a quite simplistic way that lacks the profound philosophical and even anthropological arguments that we saw in other sci-fi shows like Star Trek (yes, I’m being unfair with that comparison but still).

With some complications due to Six being hit with electrostatic discharge and Three and Four turning on them, they manage to save the Android and get back to the ship, thanks to Two staying behind aiming at Three and Four. Talk about a tense relationship. After all, this episode only served to make the crew trust the android, not each other.

They resume Three’s interrogation: he’s telling the truth. This means that the ship’s malfunction was actually an error and that there was no sabotage. Which also means that trying to figure out who did this is going to be “next to impossible” so they should just let it go and move on. At least that’s what Two suggests.

dark matter - episode three - the daily fandom

One and Two had to give us a cliché moment when they have a talk while she’s working out. The both of them seem to be the closest ones, maybe because they were the first ones to wake up or maybe because there’s also some sexual tension between them, as we could see in that unnecessary kiss. One says that Three and Four seem more cold blooded and ruthless while the rest of them don’t seem like they’re that bad meaning that they lost their memories, but not their personalities. Two warns him that they might have to make peace with the fact that they’ll probably never know and throwing accusations around won’t work.

Despite having somewhat crushed my high expectations, the show is still presenting many mysteries that make me want to hope that they’ll still surprise me in future episodes. There’s Five’s subconscious, the strange objects she keeps finding, the big door, the new man in the bar looking for someone aboard Raza and, ultimately, what happened to their memories.

Far from advancing the plot, this episode was all about the android. We now know we can trust her. Having that out of the way, we’ll have to wait and see what happens to the rest of the crew. Dark Matter keeps being quite generic and presenting a lot of cliché conversations that, as I previously said, are forgivable for a Pilot, but not so much for the rest of the episodes. The series needs to step up their game and get more profound, which is something you will always demand from a science fiction show.

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24-year-old TV journalist. I especialize in fangirling over TV shows and anime. Currently fighting for fan studies to be recognized as a valid academic field.

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[…] 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. […]

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