The title is an ironic one for the episode, since it’s really all about getting Molly (who went to the doomed space station Seraphim to rescue Sean and maybe stave off an accidental alien spore-seeding of Earth during its crackup) back to her family on the ground in the escape shuttle. But then again, the title turns out to be literal, too, because an ascension is also imminent, but for another main character. Extant was a weird hybrid all along, full of so many reversals and surprises it wasn’t always clear where the story was going. Director Sparks’ aid was a thug, then a drug addict, then a torturer, before revealing himself to be an undercover good guy. Space agency ISEA was corrupt, before being secretly better run, before not having much to do with seeming founder (and mining executive) Yasumoto. Who himself was insidious, then generous, then immortal, then dying while grasping for a fountain of youth. His lover was against the rise of the machines that he was actually funding through Berry’s husband John, whose partner Julie got involved with fellow cyborg Odin, who was secretly a terrorist sent to befriend robot boy Ethan in order to kill and discredit him. Got all that? It was actually easy to follow over the course of three months, but what do any of these disparate threads have to do with each other you may well wonder? In the end, the series existed somewhere between the creatively combined (but derivative) ideas of creator Mickey Fisher, and the more predictable and familiar sci-fi concerns of producer Stephen Spielberg. Because in this finale (one of four episodes written by Fisher himself), it really comes down to Molly realizing she has two young sons, neither of them fully human, who end up pitted against each other even as she loves them both. There are hints left for developments in any further season (while Molly survived, at most she accomplished a delaying tactic on the invasion her hybrid son hinted at), and never really a direct acknowledgement of how her impossible solo space mission pregnancy was a complete violation of her free will. Is her husband John a gifted visionary or an insane crank who will bring about Skynet? Is her friend Sam truly loyal or compromised by her competing allegiances? Who will answer for the many deaths the aliens have caused? To judge from the fading ratings over the course of the series, we may never find out, unless the Amazon Video marketing program is enough to set the basis for growing cult status. Extant does occupy a kind of unique sci-fi niche, actually. How many other series have there been with great special effects, a consistently built and conceived near-future world, and an unflagging concern for nuclear family values in the face of all biological or rational obstacles? That is to say, who wouldn’t want super-astronaut Berry for a mom? Extant 1.13 "Ascension"4.0Overall ScoreShare this:TweetShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading... Related Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYou must be logged in to post a comment.