Dark Matter Episode 4 Postmortem: Who can you trust?

Four

For the first time this season the Dark Matter crew left the ship and spent most of the episode breaking off into groups and exploring a space station. Crew members discovered more about themselves, their abilities and most importantly their pasts as they set off to refuel and sell their weapons to replenish their finances. As expected, things didn’t go quite according to Two’s master plan and One and Three had a run in with the real Jace Corso, while Two’s violent primal nature resurfaced at the casino. Perhaps most importantly though, Four finally discovered the truth behind his mysterious ring and we’re not so sure he liked what he learned.

“Who you can trust and shifting alliances” will continue to play a major part of Dark Matter’s first season co-creator Joseph Mallozzi tells us in our weekly post-episode chat. “It’s the idea that secrets are kept, but eventually when they come out there’s hell to pay,” Mallozzi previews. He also has some information on how Four will deal with his newfound knowledge of his past, what Two’s actions say about her as well as the ongoing theme of isolation that the show will continue to explore as the season progresses. Read on for Mallozzi’s take on Episode 4.

 

The TV Junkies: Well it turns out our suspicions were correct and Four seems to be the most dangerous crew member. It’s one thing to find out you’re a criminal but now he learns that he killed his own father. How will this affect him moving forward?

Joseph Mallozzi: One of the interesting things, I’ve said this from the very beginning, is that we’re on the same level as the characters. We don’t know who these characters are but they don’t know either. We’ll be going on these adventures with them and as the series progresses the audience will be privy to information that not everyone else will be. For instance, the discovery of the ring, that’s presumably information that Five and Four are privy to. The meaning of the ring is something that Four becomes privy to and whether he chooses to share or hold on to this information is something that we’ll find out further down the line.

Four is the type of character that holds his cards very close to the vest so one would think that he may not be so eager to share right away. How he approaches this revelation will form part of his journey and an upcoming episode. The fact that yes, he’s very dangerous and presumably killed his father, but also the fact that he left a very good life behind and he’s got a very attractive past to go back to or recapture. That’s something that is no doubt running through his mind.

 TTVJ: Jace Corso seemed to shoot the idea of clones down but then you took the time to explain them in the Dark Matter universe. Will we see clones factor into the rest of the season?  

JM: That’s a big no comment. That’s a no comment for reasons that will become apparent later rather than sooner.

 TTVJ: He also shot down the evil twin theory and seems pretty certain that One had some reconstructive surgery. Is the twin theory definitely out?

JM: Given the fact that Jace has his memories and doesn’t go to potential twin or brother safely discards that theory. He would know if he had a twin or brother.

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TTVJ: Three finally has succeeded in gaining an ally on the ship, although One is doing so against his will. Was that the only reason Three didn’t tell on One or is there more to it? How will he exploit that relationship in the future?

JM: Three exploits that relationship right off the bat and is something that is address in Episode 5. As for his reasoning, on the surface it would appear he’s doing it for blackmail purposes, if there’s another reason it remains to be seen.

I’ve been reading through some of the reviews and some are coming down on the Android saying ‘She’s a logical entity, why would she react emotionally?’ and ‘The character of Two is such a good leader and makes such practical decisions why would she want to go out and save the Android it doesn’t make sense?’ and again I bite my tongue. There’s a lot of little instances that people seem to focus on that they think are mistakes or contrary to what should be. All I can say is ‘We’ve got a plan.’

TTVJ: Anthony [Lemke] was also hilarious this week.

JM: Those two played very well off each other this week. Up until this point One has been fairly staid if you will and Anthony’s Three has been the loud mouth and the abrasive one. Now when they are back to back there’s a really nice banter or back and forth between them where you think Three is going to eat One alive, but One holds his own and that’s a lot of fun.

TTVJ: In seeing more of Three this week it was clear that he really does care about what the others think of him.

JM: Yep, you know I told Anthony that one of the really things that I enjoy about his performance–he’s really good at doing the big stuff and the funny lines–but the smaller beats like at the end of Episode 4 and just the reaction he gives. One and Three “come clean” and say they were jumped and Six says ‘Is that really what happened?’ One says ‘yeah but I was on the ground,’ and then you see Anthony in the background and he just kind of goes ‘yep!’ Then One goes ‘with my eyes closed,’ and then Anthony kind of shrugs and goes ‘meh’ and it’s not scripted and it’s a small little addition that he adds and it gives such depth to the characters. Every time I see that I just break out laughing.

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TTVJ: Now the Android, she saw Jace Corso taking the weapons off the ship and she even noted his different hairstyle. Will we see her bring this up again?

JM: Nope. She’s very good at noticing potential discrepancies but not necessarily good at processing the why of why he was different.

TTVJ: For the first time we saw Two lose control. How does what she did to the men at the casino affect her relationship with Five?

JM: You saw at the end of the episode that essentially Five has stepped back in a way. She was frightened by this display that Two not only reacted with violence but actually killed all those men–as she says, she ‘was pretty thorough.’ It surprised herself and it shocked Five and it’s something that will be addressed much sooner than later, in fact next episode. 

TTVJ: It was a glimpse into what may be Two’s true nature. Is it more along the idea that we can never really 100 per cent break free from our past?

JM: It’s possible that that’s a good thing or a bad thing. We’ve seen some of the good things in that they possess their abilities, they possess some of their personalities but on the other hand a violent nature is something too. In that particular instance it’s good and bad–good in that it allowed her to take care of the guys that are threatening them, but bad in that she ends up killing them all and that hints at something very, very dark in her past. That’s just one of the things in this episode is that you hint at the darkness in Four’s past but you hint at the darkness in her past as well.

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TTVJ: Now as Six pointed out, they have lost their money and the weapons and are worse off than before they docked at the space station. Where do they go from here?

JM: This episode will make them increasingly desperate and in a position where they may need to take a job that they wouldn’t consider taking if they were in a better financial position. That brings us to Episode 5 and guest star David Hewlett [Stargate’s Dr. Rodney McKay].

He plays Tabor Calchek and finally makes his appearance. He’s their agent if you will, the facilitator. When they were the notorious mercenaries on the Raza he’s the one that got them their jobs. He doesn’t know about them, other than the fact that they screwed up their last job, so who knows what their encounter with him will be like. But essentially he’s the guy that can get them the jobs and as Six pointed out they need a job and he’s got one for them.

TTVJ: The Android seemed genuinely sad when Four turned down her therapy offer. Will we ever see anyone else on the crew utilize these services?

JM: For therapy? Who knows, but it’s a recurring theme throughout the show, this idea of isolation. You have this group of characters who are isolated on this ship, trying to keep one step ahead of their former enemies, the galactic authorities and their former rivals but also on board there’s a sense of isolation. Right from the top you see visually the Android standing alone on the bridge and then you cut to the crew sitting together in the mess hall but nobody’s talking and you get that sense of isolation. So in that instance where she approaches Four there’s a childlike earnestness to belong where she’s very eager to be helpful and he dismisses her. She drops her gauge and you can tell she’s disappointed.

In that respect she finds a common bond with Five who right off the bat in Episode 2 says ‘I feel like I don’t belong.’ These two are outsiders and it’s a really nice relationship we explore moving forward. The two actresses Zoie Palmer and Jodelle Ferland are so strong and so good in those scenes and are so much fun to write for.

TTVJ: Zoie Palmer constantly just makes you want to give her a hug.

JM: Exactly! One of the interesting things she does is that she fulfills the obligations of your standard Android, being very practical. But on the other hand she creates an earnestness or a likability that exists in other Androids too, like a Data [Star Trek], but then she has a childlike petulance that you don’t see in other Androids. She also has a little bit of a cocky attitude with ‘My self-subroutines are very effective,’ and ‘Thank you, I’m an excellent information source.’ She’s very quick to pat herself on the back which is unusual for an Android.

OK Dark Matter fans, what are your theories about Four’s past? How will Three exploit his newfound ally One? Hit up the comments below with your thoughts and predictions.

For more information fans should be sure to check out Mallozzi’s blog for all kinds of answers to your Dark Matter questions and fun behind the scenes pictures and facts.

Dark Matter airs Fridays at 10 p.m. ET on SyFy and Space Channel.