After a strong first episode, Dark Matter continues to deliver in the second part of its premiere. Apple TV+ opted to release two episodes of this series at once on May 8th, and the decision was a wise one. At the end of the second episode, titled “Trip of a Lifetime”, Dark Matter has fully set the stage with an excellent cast and exciting premise.

Dark Matter Cast

Dark Matter Main Cast

In Episode 1, Joel Edgerton proved himself as a versatile Leading Man. In this episode, his skills as an actor are even more impressive. He plays two versions Jason of in the series, which explores the possibility of multiverses. Throughout the episode, I was continually impressed at how distinct the Jasons are from each other. Edgerton morphs his mannerisms and speech to create unique personalities with each.

In this episode, Jennifer Connelly gets to do the same. We are introduced to the version of Daniela from the other universe Jason ends up in. Here, her life has gone much differently. While she still has the charm we recognize from the first episode, this version of the character became a highly successful artist, with an installation based on the research done by her universe’s Jason. Her performance as this version of the character is especially captivating. She grounds Jason in this new universe, and she still has some love for him even though they aren’t together here. The chemistry between Jason and Daniela is totally different here. Seeing a new dynamic between the two characters, where one has memories of their lives married with children and the other does not creates such fascinating development for both characters.

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Dark Matter Episode 2 intercuts between both versions of Jason throughout the episode. It begins with the Jason we know from Episode 1, trying to make sense of the new world he’s in. There’s a great scene where he returns to the bar from the first episode, and talks to the bartender, expecting his old friend to recognize him. He doesn’t, and it plays out with an energy reminiscent of George Bailey visiting a world in which he’d never been born in It’s a Wonderful Life. There’s another clever easter egg to that classic a few scenes later, which eagle-eyed film buffs are sure to love.

Dark Matter continually does interest things with its premise. Whereas a lesser story would have Jason get frustrated and cause a scene at the bar, he, as a man of science, checks himself into the Hospital. After getting an MRI scan, he begins to notice things that key him into the truth; that he is, in fact, somewhere else. Without spoiling specifics, the way this fish-out-of-water story unfolds throughout the rest of the episode is fantastic. In this new universe, the Jason we know has different dynamics with characters we met in the first episode. It stays engaging to see which people do and don’t believe his story and why.

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Daniela as an Artist Dark Matter Episode 2

Episode 2 of Dark Matter follows the first strongly. This extra long episode continues to deliver on the tense atmosphere and fascinating story of the Novel. Seeing multiple versions of several characters, this fantastic cast continues to explore layers of characters; both who they are and who they could be. As the plot unravels further, Dark Matter Episode 2 does what any great thriller should; provide satisfying answers to some questions, while posing several new ones.

Incredible Acting
Compelling Mystery
Excellent Cliffhanger
Forgettable Score
Odd Product Placement

Review Summary

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