ORBzine - Ascension TV Review


Ascension Ascension [Season 1, Episode 1] Night One, Part 1
Shown 15 Dec. 2014

The fictional equivalent of Freeman Dyson is on his deathbed. His son (Gil Bellows - Shawshank Redemption) is confronted by a conspiracy theorist who believes that Dyson's Project Orion, a nuclear-powered starship, was launched in 1963. Of course, Bellows tells the man that the idea is insane ...

However, this Project turns out to be real. Hundreds of people, including seventy scientists, were sent off on a starship. They have a culture from the Mad men era, before the Sexual Revolution. The people still have contraceptive medication (invented in the 1950s). However, the only female officers are the Doctor and Vondra the Head Stewardess ( Tricia Helfer ). The Stewardesses work in the Officers' lounge, raising the morale of the male crew members.

The Executive Officer is the only African-American man aboard, perhaps a nod to 1960s racism and segregation. However, none of the Ground Crew are People of Colour either. Also, there is a non-racial Soap Opera element - the XO is having an affair with the wife of Safety Officer Ryan Robbins (Henry from Sanctuary ).

Things aboard the ship are thrown into confusion when a young woman named Lorelei is discovered dead. The XO is ordered to investigate.

Ascension Ascension [Season 1, Episode 2] Night One, Part 2
Shown 15 Dec. 2014

Back on the control room on Earth, the Director sends in a special investigator - Samantha Krueger ( Lauren Lee Smith ). She noses around in Gil Bellows' operation.

On the starship, the murder investigation closes in on a mad gunman.

Ascension Ascension [Season 1, Episode 3] Night Two, Part 1
Shown 16 Dec. 2014

After the mad gunman in the previous ep, there is now a mad bomber on the loose aboard the starship.

Ascension Ascension [Season 1, Episode 4] Night Two, Part 2
Shown 16 Dec. 2014

The creepy little girl has ESP powers. She knows she is being watched by the hidden CCTV cameras, and she refuses to take her medicine.

Lorelei's BF, the kid from the lower decks, has managed to blag himself entry into the Officer cadet programme.

Ascension Ascension [Season 1, Episode 5] Night Three, Part 1
Shown 17 Dec. 2014

The Ascension crew celebrate the Birth lottery. With a limited gene-pool (600 people), the genetic wellbeing of the population is not left up to choice. Since three people died, it is now possible for three couples to have a replacement child.

Samantha Krueger ( Lauren Lee Smith ) has tried to sabotage the plan by filing an unfavourable report with the Director. While Gil Bellows (Shawshank Redemption) is tied up in red tape, she then tries to break the psycho out of his cell.

The Captain is subject to an embarrassing leak about his private life. It seems that Jackie the Masseuse is not his only piece on the side. The politician tries to enact a change of regime.

The creepy little girl can see the ghost of the dead woman, Lorelei. The Doctor puts her in an MRI machine, which photogenically does not conceal her face. However, nobody bothers to keep an eye on her brain-scan readings. They just put her in, then forget about her.

Ascension Ascension [Season 1, Episode 6] Night Three, Part 2
Shown 17 Dec. 2014

The little girl's telekinesis goes haywire. The RF jammers go off-line, so ship's monitors start to play A.L.F. .

Samantha Krueger ( Lauren Lee Smith ) has been wounded. Her new friend must quickly adapt to the new world. Unfortunately, he is not mentally equipped to stay low-key. Will they be able to avoid police attention?

The ship's CO2 scrubbers go off-line. Can the Captain and the XO save the day? They abandon their posts on the Bridge, so they can do a junior worker's task that should have been delegated. Head Stewardess Vondra ( Tricia Helfer ) is the highest ranking officer on the Bridge, so she is appointed Acting Captain!

This show is like Battlestar Galactica (2003) in more ways than just the casting and storyline. The miniseries ends with a number of plot threads untied. Will it be picked up for a full Series?






Ascension Ascension [Season 1 , Episode 1 ]
Shown th December 2014

Reviewed in our special supplement Ascension