Dark Matter (2024) Season 1 Episode 3 Review: The Box

TV Fanatic

Jason1 (original Jason Dessen) can't catch a break, can he?

But at least he was still alive when Dark Matter (2024) Season 1 Episode 3 concluded, as the bodies kept dropping around him.

And the secret was out, in one dimension anyhow.

Is this series making more sense to anyone yet?

You have to feel for Jason1. He got dumped in a world that's not his own on Dark Matter Season 1 Episode 1.

Since his arrival, he has maintained, to anyone who will listen, that he didn't belong there. And the result was, at first, that he was considered crazy.

Things improved slightly in this episode as his coworkers at Velocity Labs decided he had amnesia or some other form of brain damage.

That's so much better than being insane.

Jason1 was right to be suspicious of Leighton and Velocity after seeing that dimension's version of the love of his life, Gabriela, gunned down by Dawn with no provocation.

There was little blowback for Dawn's act beyond Amanda's "I told you so."

So Jason1 took a different tact, playing into their delusions to learn more about how Jason2 used The Box to land in Jason1's dimension.

He convinced Leighton and Amanda to give him access to Jason2's research, which made sense since Jason2 had clearly solved the issues that had plagued Jason1.

What wasn't evident was if Jason1 was beginning to believe what everyone had been telling him.

In his conversation with Amanda, he seemed to be leaning toward his life with Gabriela and Charlie being a result of brain damage and his belonging in this dimension.

But Amanda came out of that same conversation thinking that Jason1 didn't belong there.

So, how did Ryan2's knowledge end up in Leighton's possession?

It's doubtful that Amanda spilled her hunch. It's more likely Velocity's security team was sniffing around about Jason's "return" and stumbled onto what Ryan knew. Maybe Ryan showed up just looking to get paid.

Whatever the case was, Ryan's confession put a premature end to Jason's fishing expedition.

His being an imposter fit well into Leighton's paranoia, even though Jason1 was the only one who might be able to make sense of Jason2's research.

Still, having Dawn attempt to beat knowledge that Jason1 didn't have out of him was certainly counterproductive.

Jason1's pouring over Jason's research at least enabled him to determine that a critical ingredient was missing, which turned out to be the drug that Ryan2 had created.

But Ryan got hauled away before they could totally connect the dots, never to be seen again.

Fortunately, Amanda decided to submit her resignation from Velocity by busting out the doppelganger of her love, Jason2.

What's inexplicable was how Leighton locked out Amanda from the Box room so quickly, yet Jason's voiceprint and passcode still worked after a year away.

And where did Jason1 and Amanda end up? Was that some nexus for all of the different dimensions? And how do they get out of there?

A better question is whether Jason1 will have a home to return to, as Jason2 has successfully replaced him.

Since landing, Jason2 has seemed like an elevated version of boring, settled professor Jason1. He's every bit as intelligent and yet much more motivated.

After all, he's getting a second chance with Gabriela, the artist who got away in his home dimension.

The fact that their breaking up was his idea only makes this opportunity more critical.

So far, he's been freaking her out, mainly in a good way.

His taking her out to a fancy restaurant and buying a second bottle of expensive wine seemed out of stodgy character for Jason.

Charlie had no complaints about his father splurging for him at a skateboard shop.

But he had to wonder why Jason2 was pumping him for information about family friends he'd known for years.

The dinner party was a real challenge for Jason2, one that he aced with social-media research, learning about each guest and their family. He made all these people that he didn't know feel welcome.

What was unexplained is how Blair Caplan, sent from The Box before Jason2, landed on Jason1's world.

Also, why couldn't she return to her dimension?

The Box seems to be flawed as it only goes in one direction. If it can't be controlled, what good is it?

Does Blair have some experience that will help with this form of interdimensional travel? And does she pose some threat to Jason2's plans?

Leighton's grand explanation for The Box was that his representatives could bring back solutions to his world's problems.

But that certainly doesn't seem to be happening.

However, Jason2 went to Jason1's dimension and shipped Jason1 back to his world. So, he has figured out something no one else has.

Jason2's performance as host impressed Gabriela so much that she was almost giddy.

And yet she still felt the need to confront him about his recent behavior.

Did she really buy his story about the near accident and having assessed what's important to him? Did that put her doubts to rest?

Why was Jason2 messing around with those birth certificates?

It's doubtlessly something that will cause trouble for Jason1, should he ever find his way back.

Were you surprised that Jason1 was found out?

Where did he and Amanda end up?

Has Jason2 snowed Gabriela?

Comment below.

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Roger Ebert