×

Continuum

Like many time-travel tales, "Continuum" -- Syfy's latest Canadian import -- is sort of fun at the beginning, but doesn't hold up under scrutiny.

With:
With: Rachel Nichols, Erik Knudsen, Victor Webster, Roger Cross, William B. Davis.

Like many time-travel tales, “Continuum” — Syfy’s latest Canadian import — is sort of fun at the beginning, but doesn’t hold up under scrutiny. Another story built around the question of whether it’s possible to alter the past in order to reshape the present/future, the show’s mix of “Logan’s Run” and “Blade Runner”-like elements largely fade into a conventional shoot-’em-up cop procedural with a few cute toys. Because the series was launched in Canada, Syfy probably got favorable financial terms as what amounts to a secondary market; even so, the program’s future Stateside is at best unclear.

Rachel Nichols (“Criminal Minds”) stars as Kiera Cameron, a spandex-wearing cop (OK, “Protective Services officer”) from 2077, who helps nab a group of terrorists targeting corporations that have bailed out the government and taken over. On the brink of being executed, though, the group manages to escape custody by leaping back to 2012 — inadvertently bringing Kiera through the portal with them.

This quantum leap leaves Kiera understandably disoriented, though she quickly connects with a young tech-hacking genius (amazing how many of those there are on TV) named Alec (Erik Knudsen), who assists her with needed intel. She also aligns herself with the local police, telling them she’s a visiting cop pursuing a murderous gang, and acquires a buff partner (Victor Webster).

Written by Simon Barry and directed by “24’s” Jon Cassar, the pilot looks pretty impressive in the future, but after that, it’s a fairly standard copshow, other than the bionic-type gizmos Kiera brings to the fight. The show is also fuzzy on precisely what the terrorists hope to accomplish, whether they truly can achieve their objectives, and if the society Kiera has sworn to protect is, given its structure, even worth saving.

This is such familiar terrain, it’s easy to throw out all kinds of comparisons, from “Timecop” to “Life on Mars.” Ultimately, though, “Continuum” engages in a lot of shootouts, albeit without much sense of jeopardy, given the bad guys (fairly nondescript, other than another “24” alum, Roger Cross, as their leader) aren’t exactly a renewable resource.

In the second episode, moreover, that gee-whiz future is largely reduced to flashbacks, which no doubt keeps the budget in line but also makes the show feel even more mundane, albeit with serialized threads.

Nichols certainly brings a striking look to the role, but other than missing her family, there’s almost a cyborg-like quality to her. Apparently, the next 65 years will lead to a reduction in facial expression.

“Continuum” does fit the Syfy profile, but it’s still a pretty thin exercise that doesn’t quite pass this fundamental test: If allowed to go back in time, would you erase the hours spent watching this show?

Continuum

Syfy, Mon. Jan. 14, 8 p.m.

Production: Filmed in Vancouver by Boy Meets Girl Film Co., Reunion Pictures, Shaw Media and GK-TV. Executive producers, Simon Barry, Jeff King, Tom Rowe, Pat Williams, Matthew O'Connor, Lisa Richardson; co-executive producer, Sara B. Cooper; producer, Holly Redford; director, Jon Cassar; writer, Barry.

Crew: Camera, Joel Ransom; production designer, Chris August; editor, Allan Lee; music, Jeff Dana; visual FX supervisor, Adam Stern; casting, Sean Cossey, Stuart Aikins, Marc Hirschfeld. 60 MIN.

Cast: With: Rachel Nichols, Erik Knudsen, Victor Webster, Roger Cross, William B. Davis.

More TV

  • John Callahan

    John Callahan, 'All My Children' Soap Opera Star, Dies at 66

    John Callahan, a soap opera star on “All My Children,” died on Saturday morning after suffering a stroke at his Palm Springs, Calif., home on Friday. He was 66. “Your bigger than life, gregarious personality will leave a hole in our hearts forever. We are devastated–my great friend, co-parent partner, and loving father to Kaya,” [...]

  • Cardi B Joe Exotic

    Cardi B Pledges to Start a GoFundMe for Joe Exotic From Netflix's 'Tiger King'

    Cardi B, like most people in the world, is hooked on Netflix’s “Tiger King.” Over the past couple of days, Cardi has been tweeting about the new docu-series, which follows the bizarre story of Joe Exotic, a private zoo owner with hundreds of exotic animals who ends up in jail for hiring a hitman to [...]

  • Victorious

    Ariana Grande and the 'Victorious' Cast Celebrate 10 Year Anniversary on Zoom

    Nickelodeon fans’ dreams came true when the cast of “Victorious” reunited to celebrate the show’s debut 10 years ago. Ariana Grande, Victoria Justice and their co-stars were supposed to get together in person to commemorate the anniversary, but due to the shelter-in-place rules around the country, the cast all hopped on a Zoom call. Grande [...]

  • Tiger King

    'Tiger King': Where Everyone in the Series Is Now

    (Warning: Spoilers ahead. Do not watch if you haven’t seen all seven episodes of Netflix’s “Tiger King.”) Like a stealthy tiger padding through the jungle, no one saw Netflix’s “Tiger King” coming until it was too late to un-see the questionable conditions the animals were kept in, and the questionable taste in tattoos of nearly [...]

  • Jameela Jamil attends the NBC and

    Jameela Jamil Admits She Could Have Picked a Better Time to Come Out as Queer

    Jameela Jamil isn’t interested in being perfect.  “Sometimes, I do f— up, but I always apologize when I’ve gotten it wrong,” she told said in a candid interview on “Variety Live,” which streams via Variety’s Instagram account. “I learn, and other people learn with me.”  And she definitely isn’t afraid to back down from a [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content