Contains only mild spoilers!
Primeval: New World of course is a spin-off from the British show which ran from 2007 to 2011. So when you start watching this new spin-off, perhaps you first think, when you are watching the first few episodes, been there, done that. And with the first few episodes I guess it’s true. But that was necessary because they of course wanted to bring in new viewers, viewers whom never seen the original British show. The new viewer needs an introduction and those first episodes are intended for that purpose.
Right from the start though you see this is a bit bigger than the original show, not to say anything less about the original because that one is great also. And even though the first batch of episodes are entertaining but not really something special, the pilot introduces the Connor Temple character snooping around in Canada and at Even Cross’ company Cross Photonics. It definitely sets up a story arc which will be touched upon through-out the series. From the start this was the reason what interested me, it was not just catching new Dino’s every week. Which also wasn’t the case with the original show, this also wasn’t a story of the week show.
The lead cast where all interesting, not one of them I thought they could do without. Evan Cross, played by Niall Matter (Eureka), Dylan Weir, played by Sara Canning (Vampire Diaries). Thought she was a welcome surprise, she really went for it all the way. Danny Rahim, played Mac Rendell, before this I never seen him in anything but he turned out an interesting character which was very important to the story-arc episodes. Toby Nance, the tech girl, played by Crystal Lowe, check out her IMDb, she already has done so much! Ange Finch, played by Miranda Frigon (Heartland, Sanctuary) and Lt. Ken Leeds, played by Geoff Gustafson (Once Upon a Time), who I also really like a lot, during the course of the first season he became more and more interesting!
There also were some interesting recurring characters, Colonel Hall, played by Louis Ferreira, we of course all know from his Stargate Universe role and also Lexa Doig who plays Dr. Fridkin, and she has a (SCI-FI) resumé longer than my arm! To name a few: Andromeda, Stargate SG-1, The 4400, Continuum. There also are a number of interesting guest stars like Colin Ferguson, who played Sheriff Jack Carter on Eureka. Funny thing is that in this particular episode (episode 9, Breakthrough) he is a genius! I thought that was a nice twist and also, if the show continued into season 2, Colin Ferguson’s character most likely would have become a recurring character giving the episode ending. The other one which I immediately recognized was Patrick Gilmore, who plays Blake in episode 5 Angry Birds. Patrick Gilmore we of course know from Stargate Universe where he plays Dr. Dale Volker. He also has a big role in the Canadian SCI-FI show Travelers. Last but not least Andrew Lee Potts, who plays Connor Temple, who is from the original British version.
That brings me to the next part, Primeval: New World is very heavily influenced by Stargate! Although the creators have a Star Trek history: Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens, Martin Wood (co producer/Director Stargate) is an executive producer and he also directed 4 episodes! Amanda Tapping (Samantha Carter in Stargate SG-1) directed 3 episodes. Andy Mikita, who directed a fair number of Stargate episodes, also directed 4 Primeval: New World episodes. And of course the earlier mentioned actors Louis Ferreira and Patrick Gilmore as well as Lexa Doig who all have a Stargate past. Gillian Horvath developed the show and although she did not work on Stargate, she has worked on Sanctuary, which of course is also heavily connected to Stargate. Gillian Horvath also was extensively involved in one of my other all time favorite shows: Highlander, The Series. Miranda Frigon (Ange) also was in Sanctuary. So the message is clear, if you are a Stargate fan, you’ll have to check out this show, it’s fun and it gets better with every episode and when you have watched the series finale, you will be very disappointed you will never see a new season! Still, despite that, it’s worth it. It’s obvious there are a lot of Stargate influences so it’s really worth to check this out.
Intro theme-song / End Credits
Another thing, is that I truly love both music themes, the intro as well as the theme at the end of each episode. They both really are catchy and are very easy on the ears, even though they are both fast paced themes. On the Primeval: New World page you can find both the intro and the end credit theme.
Primeval: New World has been released on Blu-ray in only two parts of the world, in North America and Germany. I don’t know anything about the DVD releases but what I also wanted to mention is that on the German Blu-ray release there are mini behind the scenes extras which takes 2-3 minutes each, for the first 10 episodes and there also is a “meet the cast” featurette, approximately 6 minutes and finally there is also short behind the scene featurette where you get a peek at the “tank”, the place of operation within the walls of Cross Photonics. Especially those 10 behind the scenes extra’s of the first 10 episodes are very nice extra’s. I assume the same extra's are on the North American set and the DVD releases, but I don't know for sure.
The best episodes:
Well I personally like episode 3, Fear of Flying, a creepy bug episode and a good guest spot for Jodi Balfour, who plays Samantha Sedaris, Mac’s girlfriend. I liked episode 7, Babes in the Woods, where Ange goes along with the team to search for the anomaly and the Dino’s.
And to be honest, from episode 7 to 13 are all very entertaining. For the most part because of the story-arc, which is more and more present in the episodes. Episode 9 (with Colin Ferguson) is one of my favorites, in which there is a nice moment between Dylan and Evan where she explains where her feelings towards these animals come from (wolves stuck in Barbwire, chewing off their own paws to get free). Another one is Episode 13, which sees the return of Connor Temple and is an exciting second part of a two-part episode.
Final Word: When I started to rewatch Primeval: New World, I didn’t remember exactly how much I love this show. But especially from episode 7 on, this gets better and better and by episode 13 you realize this could have been something really special. It’s not just a copy of the original, it should at least have gotten a second season. Check it out if you can and make up your own mind!