Mixed feelings, thy name is Dark Matter Season 3 Episode 12. While this season overall has featured a number of strong stories and plot lines, Ryo and his time of Zairon definitely hasn't been one of them.
Given that "My Final Gift to You" focuses almost exclusively on that thread, is it any wonder that I found it hard to spare any sort of interest into Ryo's fate?
Ryo spent much of the episode playing tempter extraordinaire, offering his former shipmates all sorts of things in exchange for the blink drive. When money didn't work, he offered information and secrets.
What irked me the most is that if Ryo truly knew all these things since regaining his memories, why in the name of sanity didn't he attempt to exploit the knowledge sooner?!
That detail made all his words to them -- his stories of a sister, a traitorous comrade, a daughter, a secret burden of guilt -- all of it, ring false. Not to mention his connection with Ferrous Corp.!
Arguably worse than that was the fact that Misaki, the total psychopath, was not wrong in her assessment of Ryo's reign as emperor! And her criticisms only made the contrast of Ryo with Four even more painful.
Look, I don’t like this anymore than you guys do. He was a member of this crew, he was a friend of mine. But the truth is, Four died a long time ago. And that guy in our infirmary is not him.Three
Would Four have made a better leader than Ryo? Almost certainly, though we'll never know. And, quite frankly, Four wasn't nearly the manipulative jerk that Ryo proved himself to be in this episode.
All his mind games and manipulation of his former crewmates only served to make me actually hate the character, instead of feeling a more or less apathetic boredom towards him.
And the way everyone just fell for every word he said? The protagonists are supposed to be canny, suspicious, and smart, but they automatically believe whatever came out of Ryo's mouth for what boiled down to "Ryo doesn't lie."
Ryo Ishida is a lot of things. But he’s not a liar.Six
Which, of course, flies completely in the face of the very simple and obvious fact that even an honest man can be compelled to lie under the right circumstances!
The ever-so-casual manner in which Ryo tossed out earth-shattering revelations annoyed me to no end. (Two has a daughter with Shaw! Three killed Sarah! Five's sister's family is a shocker! Six was betrayed!)
All we've seen of the pre-mind wipe Raza crew, I got the impression they didn't like each other very much and worked together mostly out of necessity. So why would everyone on the ship confide all their big important secrets in Ryo?
And then they just sort of tossed in the "big reveal" of the fact that the androids are plotting a revolution to overthrow their human masters. By the way. Admittedly, that one was fairly predictable, but still...
This sounded like it may be part of the setup for the major arc of the next season. I'm not super excited by the prospect due to its distinct lack of originality. Anyone seen an episode of Battlestar: Galactica lately?
I also have certain mixed feelings about the use (over-use?) of the transfer transit technology. Obviously, it's a handy tool, both in-universe and for the sake of storyteling, but it eliminated a large element of danger for the protagonists.
In fact, Three took advantage of the memory-loss side effect so as to forget his guilt over what he (may have) done to Sarah. What do you think of the use of clone travel in the series?
So, after all the negative things I've mentioned about "My Final Gift to You," here are few high notes.
The fight choreography impressed as usual. I particularly enjoyed Two's abortive escape attempt. I really, really enjoyed Two turning Misaki's own poisoned blade against her.
They maintained continuity by specifically mentioning future-Five's remarks during the Android's time jumping experience and mused several times on whether or not time was mutable or fixed.
The "Fall of the House of Ishida" has come to pass, and whether you liked the story or not, it did bring Ryo full circle as he returned to the Raza with only the clothes on his back.
Misaki is dead. Teku is not dead. (Teku is a lot smarter than Misaki.) They played well with the ambiguity of whether Teku might actually be behind the unrest, showing open sympathy for them, while Misaki was the real power backing them.
Ryo: You swore an oath.
Misaki: To the *throne*. And the throne will still be here once you’re gone.
Be sure to stop by our Dark Matter quotes page for some of the notable lines from this episode.
The season is almost over, with just one episode remaining. You can watch Dark Matter online while you wait for the finale, Dark Matter Season 3 Episode 13, "Nowhere to Go," which is scheduled to air on Friday, August 25, 2017 at 9/8c on Syfy.
What did you think of "My Final Gift to You"? Were you surprised to see Misaki's ultimate betrayal of Ryo? What about some of the bombs Ryo dropped on the crew? And what of the pending android revolution?
Let us know in the comments section below!