In this week’s episode of Terra Nova, “What Remains,” a genetically engineered pathogen that induces amnesia has somehow been set loose in a remote research bunker. Since they’ve lost touch with the absent-minded professors, the folks at Terra Nova decide to come to the rescue. Jim senses this is more of a season two storyline, but he fails to stop Elisabeth, Commander Taylor and a red shirt from venturing out to see what’s wrong.
Meanwhile, Maddy’s dreamy potential beau Reynolds is coming to dinner to meet the folks; Zoe, the child of infinite maladies, has a cold; and Josh rejects Skye’s advances in order to stay true to his future girlfriend.
Who’s been conducting elicit gene therapy experiments and what use is a therapy that induces amnesia and eventual catatonia? Let’s just add that to the mystery list, along with Elisabeth’s amnesia-induced question, “Why would you people time travel back to before the ice age?”
When Elisabeth, Taylor and the red shirt quarantine themselves in the bunker and begin to suffer the same effects as the other scientists, Jim and Malcom defy orders and race off to infect themselves, as well. This is the equivalent of sending more teenagers to go look for other missing teenagers in a horror movie.
The good news is that Jim seems to be immune to the effects of the gene therapy. Is that because he’s caught Zoe’s cold? Or maybe it just doesn’t affect hunky, bi-curious macho men from the future. Sadly, that’s not the case, since hunky, bi-curious macho man Taylor thinks he’s still fighting the war and the dinos around him are just mind games. The other side effect seems to be the compulsion to share character backstory, since we learn that Taylor lost his wife sometime before coming to Terra Nova.
Just when we think that maybe Josh isn’t going to be in constant peril in every episode, Skye introduces him to the shady barkeep who’s in cahoots with the Sixers. Seems the barkeep can help get Josh’s girlfriend to Terra Nova. Josh, instead of seeing traveling back in time 85 million years as an opportunity to see other people, thinks this is a good idea, so he pledges his servitude to the seedy pub owner. Sixers leader Mira sees Josh’s deal as an opportunity, though for what, we don’t know yet. I’m hoping it’s an opportunity to feed him to dinosaurs.
Back in quarantine, Elisabeth has forgotten Jim and the kids, but recognizes Malcolm as her old boyfriend. Awkward! I hate when I travel back in time 85 million years, lose my memory, then run into the arms of my ex-boyfriend in front of my husband. (Won’t do that again!) Jim manages to fight off a snappy little dinosaur and punch Malcolm in the face, before making Elisabeth fall in love with him all over again.
As it turns out, the cure for prehistoric genetically engineered amnesia is the common cold, so it’s up to Jim to make out with everyone in Terra Nova.
This episode was reasonably solid, though it lacked the urgency of last week’s Angry Birds offering. I think what’s holding me back from really enjoying the series is the absolute dread I feel about having to suffer through a whole season of Josh making stupid, dangerous decisions at every opportunity. I’m even beginning to worry about Maddy, who is supposed to be the smart one. She puts herself and Reynolds in jeopardy this week, for no other reason than she’s emotional and won’t listen to reason. These kids need to become smarter and more likeable—fast—or I’m going to bail. Besides that, I’m anxious to learn more about the Sixers, Mira and whether or not Skye is a double agent or not.
Coincidentally, I actually have a cold right now myself. While it’s nice to imagine in my Nyquil-induced dreams that Jim made out with me and gave me the cold in order to protect me from amnesia, the truth is that it was most likely the obnoxious kids on the subway who refuse to cover their mouths when they cough. Where’s a hungry carnosaur when you need one?
Terra Nova airs Mondays at 9/8c on Fox and is available on iTunes.
Read all of FBOTU’s Terra Nova recaps, 85 million years in the making, here! Enjoy!