Syfy, 16-30 April 2012
The lost in space Astraeus crew return to Earth only to discover four years have passed and a lot has changed… or has it?
As with the 1940s time travelling episodes that opened Eureka‘s fourth season, the show appeared to take a dramatic new direction with ‘Lost’, the bleak opening episode of this fifth and final season. Everything has changed: relationships are different, Eureka is a dictatorship being run by AIs, while those who’ve returned from space have to adjust to the new ‘reality’.
This is all great stuff and leads to the usual, albeit well-executed, ‘overthrow the dictator’ plot, but it is capped by a great (if rather hackneyed) reveal: everything we’ve seen is nothing but a Matrix-like simulation generated by the captured Astraeus crew.
It is this story that plays out over the next two episodes. Keeping the two worlds distinct is almost beyond the show at times, and it is easy to become confused (although other shows have done this before, such as the two Crichtons in Farscape and the ‘sideways’ stories in Lost‘s final season). Thankfully, the entire artificial world plot is wrapped after three episodes, although that is halfway in to Eureka‘s final episodes.
The show has rarely been better, with each character given something significant to do (and one exiting the show altogether), so it is a shame that the series is building to a final climax.
Verdict: A cracking trio of episodes, although the second and third instalments don’t quite live up to the dark promise of the opener.
Episode 1 ‘Lost’: 9/10
Episode 2 ‘The Real Thing’: 7/10
Episode 3 ‘Force Quit’: 7/10
Brian J. Robb