Continuum: Playtime

Filed under: Recaps & Reviews

"Beta testers can be real losers."

The quality of writing took a severe nosedive in "Playtime." Instead of focusing on the usual themes of political ideology and terrorism, this episode of Continuum went the horrible way of commenting on video games brainwashing its players into becoming killing machines. Although it was never explicitly stated that playing video games make people do bad things, the episode sure as hell implied it with no subtlety at all.

An investigation brought Kiera to a video game company, where she got to try one of the virtual reality games. Because of the game's immersive technology, Kiera's in-game death caused her to fall down in real life. To make matters worse, it also shorted her implanted chip.

As soon as the chip was rebooted, Liber8 had hacked into it, and ordered Kiera to go commit murder. It then became a three way battle between Kiera, Liber8, and Alec. It was a horrible cliche, of whether or not a human could be overridden by a machine, as well as a battle between the computer experts.

The director of this episode thought it would be clever to homage the first person shooter video game viewpoint. Kiera even moved around with her gun stuck out like this, even when there was no intent to shoot.

At this point, Alec used his computer to shut off the the chip, thus cutting off the connection between Kiera and Liber8. The malfunctioning virtual reality game that Kiera played earlier was used as a handy scapegoat for what had transpired.

The message that this episode sent out was that video games are bad and to be blamed. It portrayed people that play video games as juiced up on perception augmenting substances, and that gamers are brainwashed by the violence in games. The writer holds all parties that have anything to do with video games in contempt. But in having such a strong moronic opinion passed off as fact, also holds the Continuum viewer in contempt.

Tags: Continuum, Playtime, Showcase, Stephen Lobo, Family Time, Rachel Nichols, Victor Webster, Erik Knudsen, The Politics of Time, ideology

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