Terra Nova (2011– )

TV Series  |  TV-14  |   |  Adventure, Mystery, Sci-Fi
6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 64,173 users  
Reviews: 222 user | 17 critic

Centers on the Shannons, an ordinary family from 2149 when the planet is dying who are transported back 85 million years to prehistoric Earth where they join Terra Nova, a colony of humans with a second chance to build a civilization.

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2011  
2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Series cast summary:
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 Jim Shannon (13 episodes, 2011)
...
 Dr. Elisabeth Shannon (13 episodes, 2011)
...
 Mira (13 episodes, 2011)
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 Skye (13 episodes, 2011)
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 Josh Shannon (13 episodes, 2011)
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 Maddy Shannon (13 episodes, 2011)
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 Zoe Shannon (13 episodes, 2011)
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 Commander Nathaniel Taylor (13 episodes, 2011)
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 Dr. Malcolm Wallace (12 episodes, 2011)
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 Lt. Alicia Washington (12 episodes, 2011)
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 Mark Reynolds (12 episodes, 2011)
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 Villager (9 episodes, 2011)
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 Tom Boylan (8 episodes, 2011)
...
 Carter (7 episodes, 2011)
...
 Reilly (7 episodes, 2011)
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 Compound Guard / ... (7 episodes, 2011)
Peter Lamb ...
 Casey Durwin (6 episodes, 2011)
Matthew Scully ...
 Dunham (6 episodes, 2011)
...
 Richardson (6 episodes, 2011)
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Storyline

In 2149, earth is nearly wrecked by pollution. Police detective Jim Shannon is jailed for illegally raising an extra child, Zoe. He's sprung from jail just in time to join his family on the latest 'pilgrimage', through a unique time-space-continuum rip, to Terra Nova, a colony run with modern technology in a dino age forest. Colony commander Nathaniel Taylor soon recruits as security professional Jim, who gradually finds out about some threats, notably from Saurian monsters, the 'sixers' and his own, bitterly estranged son Lucas. Meanwhile Jim's son Josh keeps getting into trouble, mainly due to his girlfriend Skye. His smart sister Maddy is in love with gentleman soldier Mark Reynolds. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

There is no paradise without sacrifice.


Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

26 September 2011 (Canada)  »

Also Known As:

Terra Nova - Az új világ  »

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16:9 HD
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Carmel Rose plays a recurring character named Nurse Ogawa. Brannon Braga and René Echevarria both wrote several episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987) (Braga was also co-producer) which also featured a recurring character with that name, played by Patti Yasutake. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Terra Nova is great for families, give it a chance to mature
29 December 2011 | by (Houston, Texas) – See all my reviews

Terra Nova is a great show! Fox should be commended for producing a truly family-friendly series, a brave thing to do these days. Terra Nova and The Middle are about the only family- friendly shows on TV right now. Everyone else puts in sexual scenes or incidents that degrade the characters, distract from the story and jar family viewers for no reason. As Bill Cosby said, "It's like someone put red pepper flakes in the Jell-O pudding." Terra Nova doesn't do that, but still packs enough excitement to keep jaded teens interested.

(Full disclosure: I joined IMDb just so I could post this review. I'm not a big network TV fan but was lured back to network TV to check out a fairy tale show on a different network, which promised to have a "Narnia" feel to it. Alas, it has been disappointing because it has extramarital sex in every episode (Hollywood promoting its favorite fairy tale: casual sex with no emotional damage, or venereal diseases, or pregnancies.) But that got me watching network TV again, and I'd heard about Terra Nova so I checked it out. I was pleasantly surprised

  • and hooked.)




Four reasons why I really enjoy the show:

1. It features a functional family who are civil with each other instead of snarky and sarcastic (rare on TV, since sarcasm is a cheap way to create conflict and laughs). The family members engage in no extramarital anything. It is extremely refreshing. My teen and 5th-grader can watch it and I don't have to hide their eyes (except for some dinosaur-on-human scenes early on). The father of the family and the Commander of the colony are strong father figures, even honorable. Admittedly, this means the writers have to resort to implausible situations (like all the blackmail) to generate conflict and interesting story lines, but that's better than having to endure another parade of atrocious role models just because that makes it easy for writers to generate conflict and drama. Give Terra Nova time to learn how to generate exciting story lines without all the tawdry, cliché techniques other shows employ. Bravo, Spielberg, et al!

2. The show portrays the Cretaceous period very realistically (speaking as a lifelong dinosaur fan and a geologist). The dinosaurs aren't an invincible scourge that bullets can't stop; they don't lurk behind every tree waiting to pounce; instead, the Cretaceous is like the Serengeti - both have big animals that are dangerous if you get too close, but they can be subdued or avoided with the right approach or hardware. I like it that big animals show up only now and then, as big animals really would. Big dinos should be rare, since it takes a lot of food to maintain the big ones. Someday that nearby Brachiosaurus herd can camp around the colony; that would bring in some dinos that really could snap their fence in two without trying, and the brachs would attract the really big predators that everyone wants to see.

3. The sets are detailed and lavish. Somebody had to BUILD this colony in Australia; it's not CG! That alone makes it a pleasure to watch - it's more believable than CG. Their futuristic technology is well-designed and plausible; it forms a natural and interesting backdrop to the story. They use it, but it doesn't get in the way. Refreshing (but probably expensive).

4. Scientists, doctors, and engineers have positive roles in every episode (along with the soldiers and cops). Science or medicine helps the colony in every episode; it's vital to Terra Nova's survival. This is great because we need to inspire kids to enter scientific careers, so we can keep innovating at a rate that will be competitive with China and India now that those countries each graduate more scientists and engineers than the total of all U.S. college graduates!

Apparently the show didn't live up to the hopes of some sci-fi fans (judging by the early reviews in this series), but it is clean, positive entertainment and that's brave for Fox to offer (and they're the only ones doing it this season). Bravo for them! As to the complaint that it is unoriginal and relies on cliché plot lines and dialogue, that is true; but everything has been done before, so calling it "unoriginal" is a very unoriginal criticism. I admit the show is predictable, but I don't mind that; I've watched enough sci-fi shows in 45 years to be able to predict all of them. I watch the show for the realistic rendering of dinosaurs and the positive family role models. I say give them time; their writers deserve a chance to learn how to make the show more believable. Meanwhile, the show has enough dinosaurs and cool technology to keep kids and teens (and at least one geologist) interested.


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