Sanctuary (1.03): Fata Morgana

Originally on PopSyndicate:themorrigan

An original web based show turned primetime. Stars Amanda Tapping as Helen Magnus, scientist studying the extreme and Robin Dunne as Zimmerman the psychologist who people say sees too much.

A much stronger showing than the somewhat convoluted premiere, the second episode of Sanctuary was much more coherent and the pacing was quite improved. In a similar fashion to the primary episode, the writers focused on reeling in the viewer with captivation action. Even though we were thrust right into a conflict, it was executed well and did a fine job of drawing in the audience.

This tale begins with the team investigating a crypt, and Zimmerman uncovering the bodies of 3 living women in stasis inside the coffins. The women were protected by creepy skeleton wearing creatures with enhanced physical abilities, aptly called Keepers. The team manages to salvage the women and transports them to the lab for study. Upon further investigation it appears that the women are either delusional or hundreds of years old

The teenage monster hunter and younger Magnus is sent to take out an invisible beastie while Helen and Zimmerman try to gain as much information about the sisters as possible, with the assignment to dig up intel on the women after she finishes the job. During the time Ashley (the daughter) is sent digging, Zimmerman, Magnus and the women uncover a great deal about their troubled past.

To show that our protagonist still has ties to humanity, we are subjected to a phone call he has with his still somewhat jealous ex-girlfriend. These vignettes are understandable since it is not so easy to leave a life behind regardless of the new job, but the scenes seem forced as there is no chemistry between Dunne and Kandyse McClure. She does a much better job on Battlestar Galactica.

The sisters find out there are a set of powerful, for lack of better description, witches who are under the rule of a power-snatching organization. They learn they have been the cause for turmoil the recurring nightmarish visions they have. They then proceed to flip out and wreak havoc on the systems in the facility, even causing Zimmerman physical harm.

As they unravel more information about the big bad secret society that was keeping the sisters on ice, Zimmerman spends more time offering them freedom from their situation. The glimmer of hope soon dims when the henchmen of the Cabal show up to retrieve the women. Ashley returns to the manor and aides with the defense of the facility while Zimmerman attempts to lead the women away to freedom.

Instead of fleeing, the sisters appear to stop the henchman from killing the team for “stealing” the women. After having tasted freedom, the sisters agree to leave with the Cabal, but only to ensure the safety of the people in the Sanctuary.

Once again I want to note that this episode worked much better and more artfully portrays the potential of the series. It seems less like the pointless rambling of the premiere and I look forward to the following episode.