I didn’t see that coming.
The story opens with Helen drilling her Clone Troopers and demonstrating that they are mindless zombies by having one kill himself.
A reporter who has been unsuccessfully on the trail of the anomaly story stakes out the ARC in the hopes of getting the biggest story of all time.
An anomaly opens in a London hospital, Cutter, Conner, Abby and Becker go to investigate. The reporter follows them.
Inside the hospital, a small anomaly has opened and a hatching of baby Diictodons have come through and are chewing through the hospital’s wiring. Posing as a doctor, the reporter nearly captures one of the creatures after he locks Cutter and Abby into an operating room with a pregnant mother and the anomaly.
Back at the ARC, Helen reveals her secret weapon. She has cloned Cutter and uses him to infiltrate the ARC and shut down its defenses. The Clone Troopers move in, plant explosives and capture the remaining members of the team.
After Abby births the baby, Becker frees Cutter and the anomaly closes, leaving two diictodons that were captured by Abby and Conner. The return to the ARC, where they are all quickly captured by Helen and her boys.
Helen reveals to Cutter her motives. The future has been destroyed and it was the ARC that bred the super predators that destroyed the world. She has decided to destroy the ARC and stop Cutter’s work to save the world. However, she thinks Cutter knows the secret of the artifact both she and Lester’s boss, Caroline Steel, were trying to retrieve from the future. Cutter feigns knowledge of the artifact to stall for time.
Back in their cell, Becker helps everyone escape and then he and Conner try to the PA system to play a faked recording of Helen’s voice. They’ve determined that she has voice control over the soldiers and plan to broadcast new orders to them.
The plan works and the soldiers stand down, Helen commands Cutter’s clone to destroy the building. The clones are not mentally the same as the original and Helen considers them to be “living machines”. While Helen escapes, Cutter tries desperately to convince his clone that he is a real person and should not give up his life. Although he cannot convince him to abandon his programming, the clone gives Cutter a chance to escape.
Everyone gets out except Helen and Cutter goes back into the burning building to save her. He finds her unconscious and hides the artifact before he wakes her up to save her. What he doesn’t expect is that Helen is as determined as ever to stop the destruction of the world and she fatally shoots Cutter and then escapes.
Conner re-enters the building to save Cutter but finds him dying. Cutter shows him the artifact and tells him he has to carry on without him. Cutter dies in Conner’s arms.
Things are obviously changing in the series. It’s no more mystery now about the cop from the last episode – he is undoubtedly going to come join the team in Cutter’s absence. Will the ARC be rebuilt? Should it? With all the workers walking around the place, none of them seem to do anything. Will Lester’s new boss and her hidden agenda prevent them from rebuilding. Will our team become rebel good guys, hiding from the law, just like the A-Team?
I do like one thing the writer has done in the episode. Helen has been increasingly appearing to be the over-the-top diabolical crazy villain that appears to want to take over the world. If we can take things at face value, now it would appear that her agenda is to save the world. She simply differs with Cutter over our place in the grand scheme of things. Can we be agents of change in the future for good or must we face the future and accept it meekly?
Amusingly, Cutter is on the wrong side of that argument, but one wonders why Helen cares? Being that she’s seen the depth of time for herself, she must also understand that nothing can last forever – including herself, and while she might be able to change the future, she can never live long enough to guarantee that it continues to lead to a future she desires.
Still, it’s nice to see Helen slightly less one-dimensional. It’s a pity she’s obviously not read any time travel fiction, or watched Doctor Who or she’d realize that history isn’t always right. The predators won’t have been created by the ARC (although the might escape from there) they’ll be released somehow by the very artifact that she took to ARC, meaning, ultimately that she will be culpable in the downfall of man through her own actions to save it. History is probably wrong because of some ill-informed journalism by the reporter who is dogging the team now.
I’ve had my misgivings about the make-up of the team for some time, and Cutter’s death doesn’t bode well for the future. Consider the first series team, A Paleontologist (Cutter), a second Paleontologist with big game hunting experience (Stephen), a third paleontology student with some computer skills (Conner), a zoologist (Abby) and two mandarins (Lester and Claudia.) Not exactly a crack squad of experts, but at least they were there because they were Johnny-on-the-spot.
Series 2 gets difficult. Conner certainly seems to have changed his specialty, now seemingly an electronics whiz, but apart from the Claudia/Jenny fiasco, the team remains much the same. Basically unqualified to investigate temporal phenomena, despite the vast resources of the ARC, the team has added no experts in physics, for example, or any other field that might help.
Now, we’ve added Dr. Page, who, as professor of mythology is… sorry… worthless, and we’ve lost Cutter, the brains of the outfit. They’re going to bring back that cop, who, while perhaps handy in a firefight, will be worthless at figuring out anything about the anomalies.
It doesn’t bode well.