Sunday, March 2, 2014

B7 Re-Watch: Time Squad

                  Time Squad

Where can I watch it:


This episode starts on the flight deck where Jenna is putting the crew through their paces showing them how to operate the ship. Midst their discussions of what to do next Blake orders Zen to set course for Saurian Major. Naturally this pisses Avon off because he insists on having some input into his own fate. Imagine that. Blake doesn't care because Viva la Revolution! 

Blake explains that Saurian Major has a large federation communication complex that he'd like to blow up. No one asks the obvious questions. How does Blake know this and how does Zen know Federation star charts well enough to identify Saurian Major? He's an alien computer for crying out loud!

En route they detect a small pod drifting in space. Beaming, er, I mean teleporting over Blake and Jenna find themselves in tight quarters and no air. Yeah. Shoulda thought that one out. They try to teleport back but Zen is having none of it and the controls are fried. They bring the pod into the cargo bay manually and all is well. 

Some poking and prodding reveals that the ship has no FTL and three occupants frozen in suspended animation. Of course we just have to hit the defrost. Just to see what happens. While they wait on their guests to thaw they get back down to exploding stuff. 

Blake, Avon and Villa teleport down to the planet which in true BBC fashion is a rock quarry. Budget constraints. What can I say? Despite their searching they can't find the resistance force which is supposed to be operating on the planet. They do eventually meet up with Cally. Cally is the lone surviving rebel and an alien telepath from the planet Auron. 

Blondes may have more telepathic contact, but brunettes do it better. 

Cally tells them that the Federation rained poison on the planet killing everyone but her. Of course Blake takes her at her word cuz hey, why would she lie? They decide to team up to make the comm center go boom. 

Things aren't so great back upstairs though. The three Popsicles are thawed and lo and behold they're homicidal maniacs. Zen eventually deciphers their computer to find out that they are the "Guardians" of a pallet load of genetic stock that can be grown to fully sized in less than half an hour. He finds this out AFTER Jenna gets slapped around a little and Gan gets KTFO. 

There there, want me to kiss it and make it better?

We learn that Gan has a mental limiter that prevents him from killing. Even though he did just that in the last episode. All this because a federation guard killed "his woman". Naturally he didn't take kindly to this and beat the man to death with his bare hands. To which I say good on ya. Luckily they overcome the terrible stunt actors and retrieve the landing party just before the explosion. Cally chooses to stay onboard completing the crew despite Jenna's misgivings. The capsule is dropped back in space because this ain't Star Trek so screw them. Blake sets another course without asking anyone and we get a close up of Avon's face as he realizes just what he's trapped into. 

Closing Thoughts:
While this is an important episode in the sense that it introduces Cally and Gan's limiter it's just poorly done. In a lot of respects it's a filler episode. After the nice arc over the first three it's a letdown to have a standalone, adventure of the week story. Especially since it feels like it was cobbled together and filmed in one take. It needs to be watched for continuity's sake but I just didn't enjoy it. The stunts are bad and the special effects are weak but that's to be expected with their limited budget. There is some nice dialogue though which is where B7 shines. I also, being a music nerd, enjoyed the incidental music. I suspect that a lot of it was stock BBC music because I'm sure I've heard it on Dr. Who. 

2.5 out of 5.

Memorable Line:
"I'm going to live forever, or die trying."
Vila Restal

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