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Continuum S02E04: "Second Skin"

In The Incredibles, we learned that choosing the right attire is just as important for up-and-coming superheroes as mad invisibility skillz, uncanny marksmanship, and some glow in the dark alien DNA. Capes may look chic, but they'll get you sucked into a jet engine midair. In some cases, the suit enables the hero to be the hero to some extent—like Batman's bottomless utility belt and, yes, Kiera Cameron's high-tech catsuit. Unfortunately, Kiera's getup isn't a custom job, and in her own time, it's not even all that special—it's a standard-issue 2077 police uniform. While it seemed improbable that Kiera would ever encounter a suit like her own in our time, seeing as it hasn't been invented yet, Jason's revelation regarding freelance time-travelers and even the common knowledge of Kiera not being the sole party-crasher from from the future who's running around present-day Vancouver made the possibility of encountering another one more likely than you'd initially think. 

However, I'm pretty sure no one thought that encounter would happen at a yard sale.


In our handy-dandy opening flashbacks, Kiera and her partner Elena barely made it through a training exercise when holographic Travis took Kiera's holographic son as a hostage. I mean, holy crap Kiera, you knew it was a training simulation heading in. I get that Kiera is completely driven by the need to get back to her child, that he's her focus and everything she does or thinks is born out of that singular goal, but the explanation that she had just as much of a hang-up before getting sucked into 2012 just made her look neurotic—in my humble opinion. 

Anyway, that was my one issue with "Second Skin," and that ain't bad. 

SO. When Kiera got tangled in time, she landed in 2012, which was probably super disappointing coming from the land of flying taxi cabs, but Kiera's partner, Elena, wound up in 1975, which was— Idk, Starsky & Hutch was on TV and Starsky & Hutch was/is awesome. <3

After waiting around for a rescue that never came, Elena accepted her fate, stashed her super-suit in the back of a closet, got hitched, and raised a family. Then, in the present-day, she got Alzheimers and ended up in hospice care, and her son decided to sell some of his mom's "junk"—including the long-forgotten spandex. 


Sometimes the superhero's suit can elevate merely deadly ninja skills to deadly ninja skills armed with the latest defense technology and, in rare cases, the hero's entire ability hinges on wearing the suit—think Tony Stark, generally speaking (I know it's not like he's useless without the suit, but still. Just go with it). The poor schlub who ended up in possession of Elena's suit was kind of like a dim Tony Stark without his Iron Man suit... in addition to not having any kind of physical prowess whatsoever. After accidentally discovering that the suit couldn't be burned or pierced by a bullet during the most unfortunate day ever, the Daring Dry Cleaner decided to do some good for the citizens of Vancouver. Things didn't work out too great for him. Maybe he should have incorporated a helmet? 

With a little assist from Elena turning on her long-dormant CMR— thus enabling Alec to trace the suit's disruptive presence to an actual address—"Second Skin" became a race between Kiera and Liber8 to see who could nab the suit first. Travis and Sonya also wrote weird, violent, love letters to each other with their chosen Liber8 targets and were totally in denial about it. Love them. 


Kiera won the quest for the suit, but also kind of lost because Elena passed away. Elena's son said that Elena wanted to tell Kiera that she'd loved her life, and Kiera could too. SO not what Kiera wanted to hear.



NOTES

– Social media loves it some Liber8. That sounds like something social media would do. 

– Liber8 is trying to woo the public by attacking companies that everyone hates anyway. Brilliant. 

– Elena was delightful. "Who's this asshole?" OMG come be my sassy grandma, pleeeeeeeze?!

– Ugh. Gardiner. Why so slimy?

– What did you think of "Second Skin"?

Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 10/16/2015

Season 4 : Episode 6

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Mary I disagree with your nitpick. The training session is just like the one (in reality) that the police have when you go through a maze and the posters/cutouts of either a bad guy/civilian pop up. You only have a split second to decide to shoot.

That is no different than what Kiera had to go through in her simulation, so her reaction (or non) was realistic.
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Did anyone else think that one of the mannequins in the laundry looked exactly like Garza?

I thought it was a fun episode. I wonder who else is going to be popping up in the future or the past from the "time bomb"?

Overall I think season 2 is taking great steps and the show is really becoming one of my favorites. Plus I think Rachel Nichols is getting better looking every episode.

Notes;

Yes, social media would. Couldn't they have gone a little further back and stopped Facebook.

Yes it is smart. But Lucas is right in stating that is until the gas lines form and Big Oil just uses it as an excuse to jack up prices.

I almost wish they would have had her live a bit longer.

It's kind of his character. Not everyone should be on the Kiera train..... that might be interpreted wrong.

Pretty good episode overall
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Definitely hating on Gardiner. Love Nicholas Lea, but everytime slimy Gardiner shows up, it feels like someone has hijacked an awesome show and substituted in an annoying character who drags everything down.

On the plus side, Elena is awesome, Rachel Nichols crying made me tear up, and Rex was an amusing character so this ep is another winner. Now if Kiera can just stop acting like Alec's mom, things will be good...
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Fun fact: the actress who plays Kiera and the actor who plays Alec are a whole 8 years apart in age.
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Side note: this means women age really poorly
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If that's poor aging, sign me up!
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Given the level of realism one might expect from a holo-simulator from 2077, Kiera's response is EXACTLY what one would expect from a mentally healthy individual.

Yes, intellectually, she'd know that none of it was real, but her facial recognition center would be saying to her amygdala, "that pattern of optical emissions indicates the presence of my son," which would set her amygdala to screaming "SAVE MY SPAWN!" in a sort of reverse-Capgras delusion. Only psychopathy or repeated exposure would allow her to act reasonably and she might even end up with a case of PTSD.

Frankly, we humans consistently and grossly overestimate the influence our intellects on our behavior.
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On the index page you are MaryAnn Sleasman, but in the article (rendered in a completely different layout) you are "Radiumgirl"? What do you want me to call you, then?
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Loved the Iron man analogy :)
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Saw this ep. about a month ago, but came to the site and read the title of the review : "What not to wear", BRILLIANT!

Good one radiumgirl ;)
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I don't really understand how Kiera can still be so obsessed about changing the future. Hasn't it already been changed?
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I'm guessing what happened in Kiera's life prior to being sent to our timeline is pretty much locked ― else how could she be sent back. But should Keira die in our timeline, it wouldn't change what's already happened to her in her original timeline ― she'd remain missing in her timeline. Also, cop-suit and weapon tech couldn't be affected, since she's brought it to our timeline, and of course the time travel tech. Which leaves whether any future person in our timeline could affect social/political happenings in the future. But things can't change too much, else the time travel tech might not be invented.

If you watched The Time Machine 2002, he kept going back to the time his fiance was killed near the frozen lake to try to prevent her death, but the only reason he even invented the time machine was because of his desire to prevent her death (as well as having plenty of spare time not being married/distracted). The very fact that he invented the time machine locked his fiances' doom.
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Well, we haven't seen any change of the future jet. At least not as far as I can remember...
And if I remember correctly, Kiera is trying to keep the future the same, so she can possibly return to her family.
Liber8 is trying to change it in order to prevent the "corporate congress" development.
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Actually, it's still unknown whether changing the future is even possible (ie, the future that Kiera knows may actually be the RESULT of her actions as a time-traveler), and Kiera is aware of this. She has also said that her drive to fight for Truth, Justice, and the Canadian Way is stronger than her desire to preserve her future.
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This is what I believe... especially considering the fact that the world advances so much in just 65 years. It advanced because people traveled back and made it advanced.

The only thing that bugs me about that theory, is that they should have known that Liber8 traveled back in time. It should have been part of recorded history.

Thinking about time travel makes my head hurt, lol.
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im a little ahead but i liked this episode. i got a bit teary when elena died. i mean she found a link to her old life in 2012 and then she died, so sad. Gardiner is super creepy!!!
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Completely agree. This is one of the first episodes to really hit on comedy and pathos amidst the kick-ass fighting
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Good review! Not as comprehensive or as entertaining as previous ones, but still a good read. I don't agree with the "neurotic" observation you made about Kiera's reaction in training. Although she knew it was training she didn't expect to see her son and I think it was perfectly understandable for her to react like that. I mean it really looked like her son was there, even though she knew it was a simulation, because his animated-image was extremely believable and, because it was so unexpected and fast and she loves her son so completely, she couldn't stop herself from feeling like if he was really there in that instant, IMHO. I'm looking forward to read your review on the next, for me very compelling and moving, episode.
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No Comment on Alec's budding lovelife? "I need to please you!?" Great :D

What set this episode apart from others for me was that it contained an element of comic relief that the others didn't seem to have.

I don't remember more about it, it's been a while.....
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I thought it was "I meet to please you". The bumbling male version of I'm Pleased to meet you. Us males tend to do silly things when we meet girls that we like.
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I love the actress from Kyle XY and Caprica, but it feels like this show has trained us to be suspicious of all new people. So yay for Alec getting some female attention, but Spidey senses are tingling about whether or not Elena can be trusted
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My only weird issue is Gardiner was being so creepy I have doubts Carlos or Dillon would not just punch him.

I am having a brain fart...we don't know who Esher is right? Like its not just Alec or Kellogg right? I am guessing that dude we saw in the previews is important.
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Ah, parents, they can't help it. Evolutionary biology I think. Just had a tv.com style online brawl with a Facebook friend of a friend over whether or not giving her own kid every advantage makes it harder for every other kid to succeed and makes America less of a land of opportunity (which obviously, if you give one kid a head start it is the same as pushing every other kid back in the race for success). But parents, they get irrational about their kids, logic never enters the equation. Just because Kiera's reaction made no sense doesn't make her different from every other mother in that respect. I have bonded with that face! It has half my DNA! I must protect it!
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