Review: Sanctuary, “Chimera”
If you’re wondering why I didn’t review last week’s Sanctuary, it was because I heard it was a musical episode, and — my fondness for Glee not withstanding — I didn’t think I could handle it. But I’m now back to my regular schedule of reviews.
“Chimera” is the sort of story that seems weak on paper but becomes delightful through good execution.
After a series of malfunctions, the Sanctuary team discovers a destructive Hollow Earth nanite in their computers. The only way for Sanctuary head Helen Magnus to stop it is to enter the virtual world it has created — Matrix style — with the aid of everyone’s favourite electromagnetic vampire, Nikola Tesla.
Tesla makes everything awesome, and it would have been good enough with just him and Magnus, but things get even more fun when they discover the nanite also brought with it a shard of Adam Worth, the mad 19th century scientist who blew up Hollow Earth and who has been the source of so much trouble for Magnus and the Sanctuary.
“Chimera” is a very generic story, when you get down to it. It’s basically every Star Trek holodeck episode blended together with hints of Tron and the Matrix.
But yet, it’s Magnus, Tesla, and Adam crammed into a virtual world together. They could have those three put together a set of IKEA cabinets for an hour, and I’d happily watch it.
Tesla, in particular, was in fine form. I’m pretty sure I burst into laughter every time the camera was on him. I give the credit for this to the actor, Jonathon Young. He can communicate so much impish mischief just with a minute change to his facial expression.
“Chimera” brought more to the table than humor, though. A lot of shows, including Sanctuary, often try to strike a balance between lighthearted silliness and serious story-telling, but I find this effort rarely succeeds. In this episode, though, they manage to strike a good balance between Tesla’s goofiness and Worth’s chilling creep factor.
There were some very dark and spooky moments in this episode, and for once, they didn’t feel out of place amid the jokes and Tesla’s unrelenting lechery.
If I have a complaint about this episode, it’s that the ending came a little too quickly and easily. But that’s par for the course with Sanctuary.
Overall rating: 8.9/10 One of the highlights of the season.
For those looking to get caught up on the series, the first three seasons of Sanctuary are available on my Amazon Affiliate.
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