With all the new sci-fi TV shows coming out all around the same time now, it can be really hard to keep up. I never thought I would ever say that! The science fiction (sf) genre has truly taken off and I’m for one, ecstatic about it!! I remember when there was only one sf movie/TV show per year, and that was just the blockbusters! So when a close friend of mine, who knows my expensive taste in sci-fi, said I needed to watch the Netflix
series, Dark Matter, I had to check it out. And based on my past addictions of Firefly and Battlestar Galatica, he was right, I LOVE Dark Matter!! And fortunately I’m not alone. Currently, according to IMDb, “Dark Matter” has a score of 7.5 out of 10 based on over 24,867 user votes. Between the script, diverse cast and strong female lead, this show has all the right ingredients for a sustainable sci-fi space opera.
The shows intriguing mystery of 6 people waking from hibernation in a starship ‘Raza’ with no memory or identity, grabbed me from the start. In an interesting article from
, “The clue to what this is all about is in the ship name, because ‘Tabula Rasa’ is the Latin for ‘clean slate’. This goes to the heart of a philosophical argument about people and if ‘nurture’ or ‘nature’ essentially determines who they become. By removing the characters’ prior memories, it becomes an experiment where someone knows how they should turn out, but is curious to discover if they were always born to be that.” This narrative has so many avenues to explore and I’m looking forward to every one of them in Season 3.
It’s so refreshing to see diversity finally breaking through the science fiction genre! Dark Matter’s all-inclusive cast also brings a Japanese cultural heritage to the show with the character, Ryo Tetsuda a.k.a Four in his story. Although it’s impossible for one show to represent all the many different types of people - backgrounds, ethnicities, cultural heritage, demographics, shows like Dark Matter and 3% is off to a great start! Having Alex Mallari Jr. - a Philippines born actor – play the Japanese character, Ryo Tetsuda works for this show because he’s such a great actor. But too many shows mimic this stereotype when they can easily cast someone of matching ethnicity. It would be nice to see a Filipino actor bring his own unique rich cultural heritage to a sci-fi show.
Another essential ingredient in this show, is its strong female characters! Many sci-fi shows today are reflecting a new demographic of sci-fi audiences in its characters. The shows main character and leader of the Raza, Portia Lin, a.k.a. Two, played by Melissa O’Neil, sets the tone with her leadership qualities that her male crewmates respect. Balanced with a soft feminine vulnerable side, while showing her motherly instinct by fiercely protecting the crew. One of my favorite characters is, The Android played by Zoie Palmer. Far from your ordinary android, she brings deep thoughts around the nature of human emotion. And like the rest of the crew she is exploring and reinventing herself as seen in season 2. Five – played by Jodelle Ferland shows off her strong tech and survival skills, becoming an integral part in uncovering the crew’s true identities. And Nyx, played by Melanie Liburd fits right in with her lethal combat abilities. She’s probably the only one who can take down Five!
Although the competition is stiff with new shows like Westworld raising the bar, Dark Matter is stands on its own as one of the best sci-fi shows on TV! This is great for the Syfy
network as well.
Looking forward to Season 3 June 9th at 8/7c