Our February Netflix Suggestion: Dark Matter

Photo by Unsplash

A few months ago, someone suggested that I watch the tv show Dark Matter and I immediately decided that it sounded like a fun, vapid science fiction adventure. It had all the makings of a good guilty pleasure: amnesia, space ships, good-looking characters and black-clad outlaws, but it turned out to be so much more.

The show opens with six people and an android waking up on a spaceship with no idea who they are or how they got there. The only information they could salvage from the computer’s mostly-wiped disk is that they are big-time criminals and that someone on the ship was responsible for their situation. The show covers them trying to learn more about their pasts and, as a result, getting involved with the underbelly of the galaxy.

What makes Dark Matter so compelling is that it tackles tougher issues than many shows of its genre. Each of the seven characters has a compelling backstory that receives about equal treatment and through these seven stories, the show is able to explore more diverse themes. It gets political with its examination of corporate interests, artificial intelligence, genetic engineering and the human costs of the economy, but it also gets personal. The characters struggle with the pulls of the people they were and the people they have become. They choose between competing loyalties.

The best part of it is that, though it is serious, it is punctuated with bursts of sweetness and humor, especially as the characters grow closer. The evolution of a tough character might be seen as going from the strong, silent type to the strong, silent type with a secret soft spot for teddy bears. While many characters stop here, the Dark Matter crew takes it further; their blazing guns are countered with family meals.

If you want something that does so much more than it pretends to and you want to fall in love with some badass characters, watch Dark Matter. You won’t regret it.