SCI-FI THAT KEEPS VIEWERS IN THE 'DARK'

“Dark Matter” teases out a familiar looking show

By Peter R. Clark Travel Editor 

“Dark Matter” is a TV show on the Syfy network created by Joseph Mallozzi and Paul Mullie. The first season ended in August of last year, and I caught the series on Netflix earlier this year. 

“Dark Matter” is a show about six people who wake up from cryosleep on a derelict ship. None of them know who each other are, and none of them have any memories. The first episode is about the six people (who name themselves are in the order in which they awoke) trying to figure out who they are, and the logistics of the the ship they woke up on. Later they find out that the ship is full of weapons.

I like the way each episode is presented. They all seem to start out with a plot that, to me, seemed like it had nothing to do with figuring out their identities. Somehow, though, the writers figure out a way to make the seemingly random plot to be related. For instance, one episode starts off with a problem with the ship’s warp drive. I was upset because I wanted to know more about the characters, but somehow the ship’s problem put them in a position where they learned something about themselves.

The set design of the show is where it really shines. Each set really makes you feel as if you are inside a ship. Everything from the lights, to the grates on the floor, and the doors. Cargo holds look like what you’d expect, dull, dark, and full of metal crates. Everything looks and feels solid, cold, and uninviting. Perfect for a spaceship adrift. 

The unfortunate thing about the show is that a lot of the storylines are very derivative. Without going into too much detail, each character’s story feels like something we have all heard before, and at times it seems too obvious. However, as a whole, “Dark Matter” somehow makes it interesting to keep watching from episode to episode to learn something new about the character’s predicament. Each episode simultaneously tells us something informative, and then something seemingly unhelpful. They reveal something, only to have it open more doors. 

“Dark Matter” is actually based on a comic book by Mallozzi and Mullie published by Dark Horse Comics. Mallozzi and Muille are known for their work on the “Stargate” series. The comic book’s story was written during their time as writers for “Stargate.” The comic book series was first released in early 2012.

The second season of “Dark Matter” has been in production since December 2015. It was picked up for a second season by the Syfy network in September 2015. There is no current start date for the next season, but I am looking forward to it returning.

“Dark Matter”

Season 1 now on Netflix

13 episodes

Starring: Marc Bendavid, Melissa O’Neil, Anthony Lemke, Alex Mallari Jr, Jodelle Ferland, Roger Cross

 

 

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