Something I’d Like to Learn More About

I’d like to learn more about the universe, the stars, the planets and galaxies. I would like to learn about the possibilities of settling on one of the planets or moons, possibilities of finding life on them and the process of terraforming. I’m interested in things like that. What makes our planet unique in supporting life and how to search out for similar planets to increase the chances of contacting sentient alien life, if it’s out there. I’m sure that it’s out there, although it might not be remotely similar to what we have cooked up in our comics, novels, tv & movies. There’s got to be something somewhere, otherwise it’s a huge waste of space and unlike people who are bogged down by the though that humans are somehow very special either a fluke or freak of nature of by the grace of some invisible bogey man god spirit in the sky.

I’d like to know about what it takes to get humanity into space and settling colonies on various planets. What will it take & cost to get your community onto a huge spaceship the size of a small city and flying in space and searching for a new planet. How long will it take to create a new civilization on one of these planets and how will we survive. What will we need to take along with us, what can we grow on the way and on the new planets. How much of a challenge will it be to do all this and achieve the goal of living on a new planet successfully. All of that stuff. The earth is not gonna be able to sustain us forever and we will eventually need new homes. And this is possible; not in my or your lifetimes. Not our kids or their kids or their kids’s kids. Some day in a few generations, not too many, we will have to go out and find a new place to stay. And hopefully we won’t screw those planets as badly as we did this one!

But the science & facts behind it all is what I would like to learn more about.

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Terra Nova : Season 1 Overview Part 2

Last time I wrote about Terra Nova at the 8th episode mark (counting the pilot as 2 episodes instead of 1 film length episode. Jim Shannon finds out through an incoherent Tom Boyland, while he is interrogated,  about a body in the jungle connected to Col. Taylor.  Jim unearths a skeleton by the banyan tree Taylor lived in when he first arrived in Terra Nova. We also find out an ingenious method of communication between the Sixers and their spy in Terra Nova – a dragonfly with a microchip attached to it used much like a carrier pigeon between both camps! It however leads a trail to Shannon’s house and Taylor makes a show of arresting Jim. After Jim & Taylor argue for a bit, the Colonel admits that he killed General Philbrick.  Apparently those employing Philbrick and Lucas, and later the Sixers, were trying to get a time portal created that could work in both directions, so that natural resources from Terra Nova could be sent back through to their home time-stream.

The General tried to take over control, which Taylor refused and in a fight the former was killed. Lucas & Taylor also fought and the son left the camp never to be seen till date. Jim & Taylor patch things up and the two head back to the main part of the colony, where in celebration of Harvest festival, the children of Terra Nova put on a play about how to colony came to be. In episode 9 Mira captures Taylor and in a showdown between the two rival leaders which sees each take the upper hand, the Sixers’ main lady tells the Colonel as to her real motives for doing what she does – she has been separated from her daughter, who is still in 2149 and she needs to follow her employer’s orders to be reunited with her child. Mira also tells Taylor some info on Lucas, while the two have to also fend of a pair of slashers on whose territory they have encroached upon. Meanwhile we find that the Sixers’ spy in the colony is young & lovely Skye, whose mother is being held & treated for a rare disease by the Sixers!

Skye escapes Jim Shannon’s attempts to find her out and sabotages a blood sample that he was able to retrieve from a spot that he sees a morse code via mirrors being passed by her to the Sixers. However she is caught on camera and Jim and Taylor confront Skye as the Sixer mole, though she claims her only motive was to save her mother, not betray the colony, nor did she ever provide vital information to Mira. Skye warns them that Lucas has successfully completed his calculations to reverse the time portal, and that his 2149 employers will invade and exploit Terra Nova. Her mother is later rescued by one of Taylor’s exiled soldiers who was sent to infiltrate the Sixer’s camp and she is reunited with Skye.

In the double episode season finale, as the 11th pilgrimage arrives from 2149 to Terra Nova, a suicide bomber blows up and causes chaos at the portal. Several soldiers are killed as is Kara, Josh’s girlfriend, who was one of the 11th group. The Phoenix Group has a large group of private soldiers take control of the colony and have confiscated most of the weapons. However Taylor & a small group of soldiers escaped and set up a temporary camp while awaiting opportunities to attack and get their colony back. With the help of his wife & Malcolm, Jim is able to pass on vital information & coordinates of places where Lucas and his group are mining the local resources. Later they plan to kye deceives Lucas into leaving the Phoenix Group convoy to instead hunt his father, leading him into an ambush that provides Taylor an opportunity to swap a shipping container containing valuable cargo from the Badlands with one hiding Jim, a bomb, and a drugged Carnotaurus. With the now-awake, raging Carnotaurus creating havoc inside Hope Plaza, Jim destroys the facility and the time portal as he barely slips back into the new world. Skye shoots Lucas to save Commander Taylor, but Lucas survives and disappears. Discovering they are cut off from 2149, the Phoenix Group and the Sixers evacuate Terra Nova and head for the Badlands. The valuable cargo from the Badlands is revealed to be an 18th century ship’s prow and figurehead with little indication of how it got there.

As the season ends many previous unanswered questions are solved but they give rise to new ones. Who are the Phoenix Group working for and who are the ones financing it? How did the prow of the ship get into the bad lands?  What else is out in the bad lands that the Phoenix Group would abandon Terra Nova for? How did Lucas’s employers “know” the ship’s prow was in the Badlands? It predates Taylor’s trip through the portal. Are they somehow responsible? Or is it an alternate rift in time, perhaps something to do with the Bermuda Triangle? These are the thoughts that go through a viewer’s mind as the season ends. I can’t wait for season 2 to start but a shame that Simeon Kessell won’t be returning in her role as Lt. Alicia Washington as her character was killed by Lucas while she created a diversion for the Shannon family to escape.