A brand new episode of Continuum airs tonight at 11 PM on Syfy—and this time-travel show is even more complicated than ever. So just in time for tonight’s brain-popping adventure, here’s a quick primer to get you up to speed...

Continuum is a show about Kiera Cameron, a police officer (Protector) from the year 2077, who gets sent back in time to 2012 along with a group of anti-corporate terrorists called Liber8. In the first season, the show was a fairly simple look at how the Liber8 freedom fighters try to destroy the corporate-dominated future they come from, and Kiera tries to stop them—even as we (and she) come to realize that the future she comes from is a horrible dystopia.

But things have gotten a lot more complicated since then. We’ve met a ton of other time travelers, and gone through multiple alternate timelines, and everything has gotten kinda crazy. So here’s where we are now!

Basically, at the end of the previous season, Kiera believes that she’s fixed ALL of the time-traveling problems, having defeated the mysterious time agents called the Freelancers and sorted out various other things.

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Her boyfriend, the guy sitting next to her in the above gif, is Brad Tonkin—he’s from an evil alternate future that’s actually worse than the dystopia that Kiera comes from. In Brad’s future, the corporations never took over but instead the world descended into war and destruction. Brad is part of a group of commandos trying to fix everything, and then sent him back in time as an advance scout—with a mission to kill Kiera, among other things. Now he and Kiera are in lurve.

So once he and Kiera believe they’ve solved all of the timey shenanigans, Brad decides to go ahead and activate the beacon he was given, which will summon a squad of supersoldiers from his evil alternate future. Just, you know, to make sure that future was wiped out. It wasn’t. In fact, a squad of supersoldiers appears, and they immediately try to kill Kiera.

But they’re still happy to see Brad Tonkin—here’s their leader stepping out of his suit and giving Brad a big hug. Brad tries to convince them that he did the right thing, sparing Kiera’s life, because she’ll be a good source of info. Or whatever.

But they don’t all trust Brad. Like this guy. He doesn’t trust Brad at all, in spite of all Brad’s clever rationalizations for having kept Kiera alive.

Meanwhile, Kiera uses her invisibility to sneak into their HQ and steal something—a super powerful pen-shaped item that they apparently want back really, really badly. And we overhear them saying that they only have 11 days to build something before their power core degrades. Whatever they’re building, they need stuff from their power suits to make it—so they’ve ditched the power suits for good and are just regular badasses now.

Matthew Kellogg is a supersmart grifter who traveled back from 2077 with Liber8. And apparently in the super-dark alternate future that these commandos come from, Kellogg is some kind of warlord? He’s their leader, although he hasn’t come back in time with them. He did leave a holographic message for the version of himself that’s in 2012, basically saying that Young Kellogg needs to trust Old Kellogg. (Even though neither of them is remotely trustworthy.)

And that’s Marcellus, the leader of these evil-future commandos, talking to Young Kellogg. Marcellus won’t give Kellogg any more info about their mission, but he does seem interested in keeping Young Kellogg alive and safe. So the commandos don’t quite “work for” the younger version of Kellogg, but they seem to respect him. And they need one particular abandoned building, which he gets for them.

So now, Brad is “undercover” with his former colleagues, but is secretly gathering intel for Kiera. Or is he? He seems like he’s just stringing her (and them) along.

And meanwhile, Carlos, Kiera’s former partner, is the new Inspector in the Vancouver PD. Which means he has to deal with Piron, the evil corporation that provides the police with funding and equipment—and Piron is now run by Matthew Kellogg, who used trickery and general sliminess to weasel his way into a position of power there.

Carlos’ former boss, Jack Dillon, has been drummed out of the police force after he did some complicated sting operation involving setting up his daughter as a patsy. And now, he’s recovering from a near-lethal explosion and working for Piron, as Matthew Kellogg’s stooge. Carlos has a weird mixture of lingering respect and pity for his old leader.

The former head of Piron, Alec Sadler, seems to be happier now that he’s no longer destined to become the evil corporate overlord he is in Kiera’s version of the future. Instead, he’s just back to helping Kiera out—although he’s pissed at Kellogg for taking away his company, and he did hack Kellogg’s computers and steal a ton of data, including all the specs for time travel and antimatter. Here, Alec is talking to his stepbrother Julian, who is an evil anti-corporate terrorist called Theseus in the future that Kiera comes from. Julian and Alec seem to have repaired their relationship and they no longer seem destined to become enemies.

In fact, the remains of the terrorist group Liber8, the ones who were determined to stop Alec’s rise to corporate power, seem to have become his besties. (Also, Future Alec sent them back in the first place, because he decided that his whole timeline sucked and needed to be fixed. Long, confusing story.) That’s Lucas, a Liber8 computer whiz, sitting in Alec’s fancy house with Julian and Jason.

Because Alec hacked Piron’s computers, Kellogg had his girlfriend Emily kidnapped and held hostage. Here she is kicking the ass of one of her captors, in a totally awesome fight scene. Alec comes for her just in time to aid in her escape.

In a less-awesome scene, the escaped Emily asks Jason, who’s Alec’s son from the future, if she’s his mother. And he basically says no. Which, duh. Jason is the product of an alternate timeline, one that’s been wiped out at this point. If Alec is not on track to become the overlord we’ve seen in Kiera’s version of 2077, then he’ll probably never even meet the woman who gave birth to Jason. So Emily’s question is wrong-headed and ill-informed, and she shouldn’t care who Jason’s mother is. I thought she was smarter than this. Anyway, the combination of knowing that the alternate-future version of herself didn’t marry the alternate-future version of Alec (which I guess means they’re not a couple in every possible future timeline) and the notion that she’ll keep being a target for people who want to get to Alec causes her to bug out and leave him.

Bah.

Meanwhile, Kiera sustains a head injury and gets shunted into a simulation produced by her cyborg implants, where she’s safely back home in the year 2081-ish. And this rekindles her desire to get back home to her own time, even though she knows darn well that her future no longer even exists. She decides, instead of focusing on the problem of the supersuit-guys from the dark alternate future, to mope about how she wants to get home and see her child. And for some reason, other people take this seriously. Kiera: Always known for having great priorities.

Curtis Chen, the character with the most confusing backstory of all, came back in time from 2077 with the rest of the Liber8 crew. Then he was killed by Kiera. But the Freelancers, a set of time-traveling busybodies, brought him back to life. He then got drummed out of their organization but decided to join up with a guy named the Traveler, who’s a mysterious 1,000-year-old dude with dreadlocks.

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Anyway, Curtis is trying to play Kellogg and Liber8 and a bunch of people against each other. And here, he’s telling Kellogg the best thing to do is to help Kiera go home to her own future—something Kellogg didn’t even think was possible, until now.

Because Kellogg is at least nominally in control over those supersoldiers from the future, the remains of Liber8 decides to wipe him out. They nearly gas him to death, but Kiera holds him underwater, forcing water into his lungs, until the poison is removed.

And meanwhile, Carlos takes out the Liber8 leader, Travis, in a fairly awesome throwdown/gunfight. He shoots Travis like seven or eight times. Travis, who’s basically unharmed because he’s a super-soldier too, is in Vancouver police custody. Although considering the Vancouver PD has a revolving door on its cells, he won’t be there for long.

And there you have it. There’s a new Continuum episode tonight at 11, and we’ll have a recap of it in a few days...


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