Terra Nova: Episode 4- ‘What Remains’
Creators: Greg Silverstein, Kelly Marcel
Starring: Shelly Conn, Jason O’Mara, Landon Liboiron, Noomi Scott, Stephen Lang
Reviewed by: Matt Wavish, official HCF critic
Episode 3 of Terra Nova finally moved away from the safe, almost childish feel of the first few episodes and we finally get a good storyline, with some proper character development and hints at possible good things to come. There is still a major lack of Dinosaurs, although we do get some that last on screen for, oh, say about two minutes. However, with the promise that Commander Taylor might have some serious mental issues and a possible dodgy bar owner getting up to no good with the so-called evil Sixers, things are finally beginning to shape into a series which just might last the distance.
A virus outbreak threatens to destroy the colony of Terra Nova as Jim’s wife Elisabeth and Dr Malcolm Wallace head into the jungle to help Taylor and Jim investigate a radio outpost which has gone silent. Elisabeth and Malcolm end up together and catch the virus, which quickly causes severe memory loss resulting in the infected becoming catatonic. The memory loss causes Elisabeth to believe she is back at University, the place where she met Malcolm and dated him, and much to Jim’s anger, he has to play along with it as Elisabeth attempts to find a cure. Some of these moments lead to such well delivered comedy, and there is even a touch of emotion on Jim’s part, but it is Taylor who becomes the most exciting as he catches the virus after Jim demands they go in and save his wife. Jim has a cold, and would appear to be immune in a plot twist you can see coming a mile off.
However, Taylor, the best character in the series, starts to lose his mind and his marbles as he suddenly believes he is back in the war and that his now dead wife has been taken hostage. His high tech training sets in and he goes on the hunt, and what is brilliant about Taylor’s character is that one moment watching him creep around, confused and determined, he can raise a few laughs, while in the blink of an eye, he becomes truly terrifying. Terra Nova is still Taylor’s show, he commands the screen and makes the whole premise exciting, and now as we learn a little about his past life, a lot more dangerous. However, one man cannot make the show, and Jim and his family continue to try my patience, and in a new plot twist their son Josh meets with dodgy bar owner Tom Boylan in a bid to get his girlfriend back from the future. I don’t really care much for Josh, I find him irritating and I really couldn’t care less if he gets his girlfriend back or not, all I hope is that this added plot device just might lead to something good.
I do have my doubts though; however Boylan does make for a good bad guy. Episode 3, for me, has been the best one yet, largely down to Taylor’s story. This episode was well paced, exciting, engaging and had some real good moments of drama and suspense. Like I said, it was mainly down to Taylor and his back story, and the final five to ten minutes which feature a great scene of hostage taking and bravery. If Terra Nova can make every episode like this then I will finally be happy with the show!