THE CROSSING – Season 1 Episode 1 – SPOILERS
Forty-seven people wash up on the beach near the small Oregon coastal town of Port Canaan. (Four hundred dead bodies wash up as well.) The survivors are not shy about revealing that they come from nearly two centuries in the future. Caleb (Marcuis Harris), the most articulate of the new arrivals, says: “We heard that someone had discovered something, a process, a way to bend time…People traveled from all over to get to the site. People with no other way out. We were the first group to attempt it. We knew there would be risks. But no one expected to arrive how we did – in the water beneath the surface. Something went wrong.”
Another refugee describes the time travel process: “They packed us onto the platform and took us into the ground – the ‘threshold’ they called it. The sound started and it was like cracks of thunder, over and over.” No one expected to materialize under the sea, One supposes they were lucky the machine’s error landed them in the water and not inside solid rock.
They fled the future because of what some called a war, and others called an “extermination”. The gene editing that was used to eradicate major disease markers in all humans inadvertently created a minority population with “heightened cognitive function, sensory faculties, and fast-twitch muscle development”. This minority organized themselves into something called Apex. Billing itself as man’s genetic destiny, Apex took over all governments in short order with the goal of wiping out those they considered to be their genetic inferiors.
The show’s creator, Dan Dworkin, told Villain Media: “We were very excited to kind of explore facets of genetic engineering. It plays a significant part of the show, in terms of where Apex comes from and the science of that. We get to that in the show. That was really fun! We had a consultant on staff who’s this synthetic biologist who helped us with our science.”
Fast twitch muscle development means that the Apex folk are great at physical activities that require short, intense bursts of energy, but not so good at things like long distance running. (They will lack the stamina for that sort of thing.) It is likely they are inferior to unmodified humans in other, as yet unidentified, ways.
Eight year old Leah (Bailey Skodje) is one of the survivors. (Her mother Reece, does not come ashore with the others, but is picked up by a fishing trawler and arrives in Port Canaan later in the episode). Leah does not know what a rabbit is. When told her name is from the Bible, she doesn’t know what that is, either. It is not mentioned in the episode, but Caleb also is a name from the Bible. (He was one of the spies sent into Canaan by Moses.)
The refugees find it strange and disturbing that 21st century meat comes from actual animals, indicating that, in their future, animal protein might be grown hydroponically, possibly due to a general lack of non-human animal life. (If rabbits have been driven to extinction, there would be little hope for other food animals.) Also, air quality must be severely compromised in the future. Hannah asks for sunglasses, because (she says) “it doesn’t get this bright where I come from“. When Rebecca wakes up after dark on Thorn Beach, she seems amazed to see stars in the sky.
Another of the refugees, Thomas (Luke Camilleri), doubts the good intentions of his 2018 American hosts, and tries to strike a deal for himself. He tells Homeland Security that his group is not the first bunch from the future to arrive in this century, and that the time travelers who preceded him might be up to no good.
Sheriff Jude Ellis (Steve Zahn) is an interesting character. He was apparently once an Oakland cop and something that transpired there caused him to flee to Port Canaan with his (now estranged) wife Amy (Alison Wandzura) and son Oliver (Christian Michael Cooper), so in a very real sense he is a refugee as well. We do not get to see his son in the first episode, but we hear Oliver’s voice on the phone, and it is a good bet that Oliver is roughly Leah’s age.
Roy (Grant Harvey), a Homeland Security agent, befriends Hannah (Kelley Missal), though he is not supposed to do that. Leah’s mother Reece (Natalie Martinez), finds (probably) a kindred spirit in the Sheriff as she searches for her daughter. Reece, it turns out, is one of the Apex people. Did Apex infiltrate the refugees, and, if so, for what purpose? Or does she represent dissent in the ranks of the enhanced? The time travelers who arrived earlier (the ones described by Thomas) are attempting to change history. Their goal could be to prevent the rise of Apex.
Simone Kessell (Rebecca) is Haley in the Australian crime drama 1%, which follows the heir to the throne of a motorcycle club (Ryan Corr) who has to betray his leader to save the life of his developmentally disabled brother (Josh McConville). A trailer is available on YouTube. The film had it’s world premiere at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival and a 2018 release is planned in theatres and on DirecTV.
In 1997, Kessell was Miss Messini in “Here She Comes – Miss Amphipolis” (Episode 2.11 of XENA: WARRIOR PRINCESS).
Sandrine Holt (Emma Ren) is Simone Martin in Season Seven of the Showtime series HOMELAND. Simone is the sometimes lover of David Wellington (Linus Roache), and lives close to the prison where Jamie McClendon (Robert Knepper), was jailed for attempting to kill President Keane (Elizabeth Marvel). Holt’s first appearance was in “Rebel, Rebel” (Episode 7.2), and her final Season Seven appearance will be in Episode 7.12, “Paean To The People”, scheduled to air on 29 April.
Maddie Phillips (Holly) plays a Registration Assistant in TWO/ONE, a film that explores the idea that while we are asleep in one location, we are awake in another. Kaden, a world-class ski jumper in Whistler, B.C., dreams the conscious life of Khai, a Shanghai corporate executive. Khai, in turn, dreams Kaden’s existence. The two men have no idea that their lives are interdependent, and that, when one of them is awake, the other is asleep. TWO/ONE is the first feature by Argentinean director Juan Cabral, and was filmed in Vancouver and Shanghai. There is no word yet on a release date.
and on CTV in Canada.