Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Round Two: Another Life

Another Life: Season 1, Episode 2 “Through the Valley of Shadows” (B)

In its second outing, this show continues the same stakes and intensity it had in the first hour. This is a claustrophobic space drama if ever I’ve seen one, and now the final scene indicates that there might be something going on similar to “Alien,” though we don’t know what just yet. Unlike “Lost in Space,” which also briefly featured Selma Blair, whose Harper Glass had a more substantial role in this episode after her minor appearance in the pilot, this show features a whole lot of cursing, which does in some sense heighten the stakes, but also feels a bit excessive. It’s good to see Jessica Camacho, best known for playing Gypsy on “The Flash,” put to good use as the very angry Michelle, who isn’t about to keep her opinions to herself. Niko was initially horrified to hear the projection of Ian talking about how she would kill them all, but William’s inability to accept what she had done made her think twice about whether she should consider what the dead man had to say. She didn’t hesitate much in front of her people, taking credit right away for killing him and then springing into action when they discovered that they had five hours to live. This show possesses elements of great sci-fi, like the red moon that was nearly as dangerous as that wave-filled planet in “Interstellar,” but I’m not sure that the mix of so many different recognizable plot points is all that compelling in its own right here.

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