Saturday, January 6, 2007


Eureka is a SciFi Channel original series that aired on Tuesday nights starting July 18th of last year. The first season featured thirteen episodes, and it's been renewed for a second season. There's also a series of seven webisodes up at the official website.

I of course missed it the first time around, and had to scramble to catch up. But Eureka proved worth the effort.

The premise--U.S. Marshall Jack Carter (Colin Ferguson), through a series of unexpected events involving a stray dog and a tachyon accelerator ends up serving as sheriff to the small town of Eureka, which may or may not be in Oregon. The town is a sort of think tank, housing all the best scientists in the US and providing them with a place to conduct high-powered research. A down-to-earth, regular, non-genius kind of guy, Carter's a fish out of water in Eureka, but as time passes he and his semi-delinquent daughter Zoe (Jordan Hinson) begin to make a place for themselves.

The cast of characters is about what one would expect. There's Allison Blake (Salli Richardson-Whitfield), the hopefully-love-interest-to-be, her not-quite-ex husband Stark (Ed Quinn), Carter's hot deputy Jo Lupo (Erica Cerra), and Taggert, a nutty animal control type (Matt Frewer, whom I remember fondly from the Max Headroom days) a la the late Steve Irwin. And then there's Henry (Joe Morton), ostensibly the owner of the local garage, but also a genius scientist in his own right, Beverly (Debrah Farantino), the hot local shrink who's moonlighting for the possibly evil Consortium, and SARAH, Carter's sentient house, which gets miffed when he's late and doesn't call. The storylines are amusingly outlandish, but not so outlandish as to be stupid, and the whole show holds together very well.

In short, Eureka is a fun, light-hearted show with an eccentric cast of characters and pleasantly kooky plotlines. It doesn't try to make any grand statements or thinky arguments about the state of humanity--it's just good entertainment. Now that I've managed to work my way through the first season, I'm glad it's been renewed, and I look forward to catching Season Two in real time.

Kim, Henry's love interest, who shows up a bit later in the series, is played by Tamlyn Tomita, who played Sam's love interest in the Season Four Quantum Leap episode and personal favorite of mine "Temptation Eyes."