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Series / Dark Matter (2015)

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Three: [guns trained at One and Two] Who are you?
One and Two: [simultaneously] I don't know.
Two: Who are you?
Three: ...I got no idea.

Dark Matter is a Canadian science fiction series based on the 2012 Dark Horse comic of the same name. The show was filmed in Toronto and premiered in June 2015 on Space Channel in Canada and SyFy in the U.S. It was created by former Stargate writers and executive producers Joseph Mallozzi and Paul Mullie, who also wrote the graphic novel together and act as two of the show's executive producers. The graphic novel covers the same events as the first two episodes of the show and was always intended to serve as a pitch for a TV series; the characters, concepts and main story arcs were imagined by Mallozzi over the course of his years working on Stargate.

At some point in the 27th century, the six-person crew of the spaceship Raza (and their service android) are awakened from stasis with no memories of who they are or how they got onboard and rename themselves One through Six in the order they woke up. Facing threats at every turn, they have to work together to survive a voyage charged with vengeance, betrayal and hidden secrets.

Despite being planned with a five-season story from the beginning, the show was cancelled on September 1, 2017, the week after the Season Three finale aired. Although there was a strong fan campaign for the series to be picked up by another network, nothing came of it, and the show was officially cancelled.

Following the news that the show had not been picked up, creator Joseph Mallozzi posted the first three episodes of "Virtual Season Four", breakdowns of what would have happened in the season.

This series provides examples of the following:

  • Absent Aliens: There are wild rumors among the mining colonists in the pilot that the Corps work with alien enforcers called the Raza for their deniable dirty work, but the rumors are proven wrong later in the same episode where they are introduced - the First-Episode Twist quoted below under "First-Episode Twist" is that "the Raza" is the main characters' own ship and they themselves are the brutal, but decidedly human, mercenaries used by the corporate overlords.
    • "The Dwarf Star Conspiracy" reveals that aliens do exist, and are behind the Dwarf Star corporation — the thing that possessed Three in "Going Out Fighting" was one of them, and they're using Dwarf Star to create host bodies that can contain them without breaking down. They come from Another Dimension, which is dying, want to take over this one, and have already heavily infiltrated the ranks of the corporate militaries in their "simulant" host bodies.
  • Action Girl:
    • Two is extremely good at hand-to-hand combat, routinely demolishing multiple opponents at the same time. Dialogue implies that, in the informal rankings amongst the crew of who would win in any fight, she is at the top of the list.
    • Second-season cast member Nyx qualifies as well, showing herself to be extremely adept at armed and unarmed combat due to her precognitive abilities helping her counter her opponent's attacks.
    • Dark Action Girl: Two's pre-mindwipe self as Portia Lin and her Alternate Universe self who was never wiped; both universes' versions of Tash; and the Zairon royal guard's leader Misaki.
    • Asskicking Leads to Leadership: Two is also the captain of the Raza and leader of the group, and so was/is Portia and Alt Portia.
  • Actually a Doombot: The General uses Expendable Clones to go out in the field, while his real body remains safe somewhere else. The GA (Galactic Authority) take advantage of this as well, as does CEO Alicia Reynaud of Reynaud Enterprises.
  • Adaptational Attractiveness / Adaptation Dye-Job / Adaptational Curves / Age Lift / Gender Flip: The crew appeared somewhat differently in the original graphic novel than they do in the television series:
    • One and Two had blue eyes instead of dark (though Two was still half Asian).
    • Three had dark eyes rather than blue and his facial scars were bigger and more livid.
    • One was more rugged and muscular and therefore not always easily distinguished from Three (in fact, showrunner Joseph Mallozzi said that by casting Marc Bendavid they decided to go with a more vulnerable look than they originally had in mind, which the casting call describes as a "Ben Browder type").
    • Four had long hair and was clean-shaven and more slender and Bishōnen; when Three referred to "Pretty Boy" in the comic, he was talking about Four rather than about One.
    • Two had short hair (although the camerage footage accompanying her wanted file in the show was closer to this look, but with a ponytail).
    • Five was a preteen instead of a sixteen-year-old, and had very short hair and wore overalls, making it easy to mistake her for a boy if not for the crew referring to her by female pronouns (even Jodelle Ferland made this mistake in an interview).
    • The Android was male and had metallic skin.
    • Six was bald.
  • Adaptation Expansion: Sort of. Mallozzi and Mullie originally designed it as a TV concept, then decided to retrofit it into a comic book called Dark Matter: Rebirth. Later, they were given the opportunity to expand the comic into a TV show, like it was originally meant to be, with the first two episodes covering the same events as Rebirth.
    • Also Inverted when it comes to the crew's rapsheets in the ship's database. While the end of "Episode One" merely lists the names of each shipmate's past crimes, the graphic novel gives itemized versions:
      • Marcus Boone (Three) - Murder 123 counts, Assault 175 counts, Kidnapping 13 counts, Smuggling 42 counts
      • Griffin Jones (Six) - Murder 36 counts, Assault 107 counts, Piracy 13 counts
      • Jace Corso (One) - Murder 212 counts, Assault 279 counts, Kidnapping 75 counts, Trafficking 130 counts, Theft 309 counts
      • Ryo Tetsuda (Four) - Murder 217 counts, Assault 125 counts, Piracy 43 counts
      • Portia Lin (Two) - Murder 63 counts, Assault 87 counts, Arson 12 counts, Theft 112 counts, Forgery 27 counts
    • This might have been changed to help hide the twist of One, the sensitive Nice Guy with Puppy-Dog Eyes, having an original identity who was apparently the most sociopathic of the lot. In "Episode Two", Three speculates about which of them has the worst rep and pegs One as the least dangerous in a tie with Five, but in the graphic novel they already know; only Four has slightly more counts of Murder and One has more everything else. Portia Lin's rapsheet being only the second least-worst despite her being the captain also hints at her career having started the most recently because she's an Artificial Human who was Born as an Adult and is chronologically the youngest of them.
    • The televised episodes also omit a scene of Three flying away in the Marauder, abandoning the others during the fight with Ferrous Corp on the mining planet (which he'd like to do in the TV version but can't, because he doesn't know how to fly it), and then coming back guns blazing, perhaps to save that Character Development for later in the series, and a scene of Mireille telling One he seems like someone who may have survived a great loss, which would have hinted at his true past identity as Derrick Moss, widower of Catherine Moss.
  • Aerith and Bob: Names range from normal-sounding to futuristic and spacey.
    • The names the crew give when posing as an extended family unit in the 21st century are a bit eclectic. Elaine (Two) and her husband Mitch (Three) sound ordinary, but then there's their daughter Apple (Five), Elaine's sister Rhiannon (the Android), and Rhiannon's husband Mal (Six). Which, when pressed, Six says is short for "Mal... vik" rather than citing the more common Malcolm.
    The Android: His grandmother was one-quarter Viking.
  • Air-Vent Passageway: Aside from her tech wizardry, crawling through ducts seems to be Five's primary skill.
  • The Alcatraz: The GA runs a prison called Hyperion-8 which is located on an airless moon. No one has ever escaped from it. It takes the crew of the Raza two episodes to pull it off. Well, there's a reason they were Famed In-Story even before this.
  • Alien Invasion: Season 3 ends with the aliens manipulating the crew into destroying the Ferrous shipyards by overloading the Blink Drive, tearing a rift into their universe so their ships can pass through into the main one.
  • All Asians Know Martial Arts:
    • Four almost immediately finds out that he can expertly use a katana and is proficient in unarmed martial arts. It is eventually revealed that he is from a Feudal Future culture based on Japan, where he was trained as the heir to the throne.
    • Two, in her first appearance, easily puts One on his back with her unarmed combat skills in order to get at the controls and stabilize the ship.
  • All There in the Manual:
    • The name of the crew's handler, Tabor Calchek, is revealed in supplementary materials and interviews, but isn't mentioned in the show proper until several episodes after his first appearance.
    • Several important details regarding the Season 1 finale are revealed only on the showrunner's blog.
  • Alternate Universe: Thanks to a glitch with the Blink Drive in "Stuff to Steal, People to Kill", the Raza ends up in an alternate universe where the crew never had their memories wiped because Five never joined the crew, and therefore Six's counterpart was killed for being an undercover GA agent. Ryo has already reclaimed the throne of Zairon, and the alternate crew now consists of Portia Lin, Marcus Boone, Jace Corso, and the counterparts of Wexler and Tash (other mercenaries our Raza crew were double crossed by in "Episode 10" and "Episode 11"). Fortunately, the Raza of that universe has the parts our crew needs to get back. Unfortunately, the crew of that universe hitches a ride back to the main one, bent on getting revenge on the main crew for screwing up their lives.
  • Ambiguous Situation:
    • Why in the world an innocent-seeming teenage girl (Five) was on the same ship as five hardened adult mercenaries to begin with. Kidnapped princess? Rescued slave girl? Family member of one of the crew? Little Stowaway? "Episode Six" and "Episode Twelve" reveal that it was that last one, and she was very fortunate that the crew decided (narrowly) in favor of keeping her around because she was a prodigy with tech, instead of airlocking her or selling her off to god-knows-whom. Six, One and Four voted to keep her, while Three and Two wanted her off the ship (until she and Two bonded over upgrading the Android later).
    • On a related note, whether pre-mindwipe Marcus was telling the truth when he claimed to "Griff" that he hadn't really been about to space Das when "Griff" came upon them, but had just been trying to scare her or if he had really been going to go through with it.
    • Whether the Farm Boy Titch, whose memories of a happy childhood with two loving parents Five wants to stay in forever in "Episode Six", was One, like Five and Six assume, or actually Three, who they think is too much of a rough-edged cynical jerk to have had this type of childhood. It was Three. He turned out the way he did because at some point not long after the memory Five was in, his parents were killed and he was raised by their murderer.
    • When the Android flashes forward to the end of time in "All the Time in the World", an elderly Five lists various things yet to come in her future, including the name "Carina". This could plausibly be either Five's long-lost sister, who was adopted by Corrupt Corporate Executive Alicia Reynaud, or Two's long-lost daughter. As it turns out, according to Virtual Season Four, it's Five's sister. Two's daughter is later given the name "Katie" behind the scenes.
  • Amnesiac Dissonance:
    • The crew learns at the end of the first episode that they are a team of wanted criminals whose crimes range from piracy and smuggling to mass murder. One, Two and Six reject this past, while Four detaches from it and Three embraces it. Five is the only one who is still unsure about her history, as she alone has no criminal record.
    • Although it eventually turns out that only half of them (Two, Three and Four) are actually former bad guys. One is a duplicate of the real Jace Corso, so it wasn't actually he who committed the crimes he's wanted for, and Six is an undercover cop whose record was fabricated, apart from his time in a terrorist movement (which was also undercover). And Two, Three and Four's original selves each had their own Freudian Excuse (see below under "Freudian Excuse").
    • In general, Three has no problem when he learns about his criminal past, but he is shocked to discover that he cared enough for one person (Sarah) to keep her in stasis so she would be able to survive the incurable disease she was suffering from.
    • "I've Seen the Other Side of You" shows Two, Three and Four as they were before the memory wipe thanks to a backup brain scan temporarily resetting them to some months before it happened. They're portrayed as borderline sociopaths who have no problem selling Five and the other unknown-to-them passengers (Nyx, Devon and Arax, who joined them in the escape from Hyperion-8) into slavery just to get rid of them and make a quick buck. After things are returned to normal and the Android offers to restore their memories without suppressing their current ones, they decide against it since they don't want those negative personality traits. Four, however, saves his imprint and eventually uses it to restore his memories to help him retake the throne, becoming as ruthless as he once was.
  • Amnesiac Hero: The entire crew of the ship, who have lost all memories regarding their own histories. They retain their base personalities, instincts and muscle-memory skills, but nothing about their identities, and give themselves placeholder names based on the order they woke up from stasis in (nothing to do with rank; Two is The Leader both pre- and post-mindwipe). Except for teenage girl Five, whose presence on the ship remains a mystery, they learn their given names from the ship's database at the end of the pilot episode: Jace Corso (One), Portia Lin (Two), Marcus Boone (Three), Ryo Tetsudo (Four) and Griffin Jones (Six); however, since they learn this courtesy of their extensive and horrifying criminal records, they keep using the numbers rather than call themselves by those names.
  • Amnesiac Liar: Being total amnesiacs, One and Six don't remember that their real given names are Derrick Moss and Kal Varrick and that they came onto the ship under false pretenses for their own respective reasons - One to take revenge on Marcus Boone and Six as a Galactic Authority agent. Since the wanted files accessed at the end of the pilot episode refer to them as criminals Jace Corso and Griffin Jones, they assume that's who they used to be - until One and Three are captured by the real Jace Corso in "Episode Four", and Six is told by his fellow undercover cop Anders about his mission, offscreen, during "Episode Eight".
  • Amnesiacs are Innocent: All of the crew are more moral people once they're regressed to a Blank Slate at the start of the series (except Five, who was already innocent and is noted by Ryo, after Four regains his memories, to be much the same as she was), suggesting that Rousseau Was Right. Even Three, the most cynical and opportunistic, doesn't go out of his way to kill people like he did pre-mindwipe. Unless they have it coming.
  • And I Must Scream: When the Android is hacked, she's fully aware of her unwilling acts but unable to stop them. Later Five and Sarah send a signal through the neural link to the hacker which leaves his mind stuck in a wholly empty and featureless space. He screams at finding himself in it.
  • And Show It to You: Two threatens to cut out their handler's heart and show it to him in "Episode Six", in retaliation for not informing them that the salvage job in the previous episode was a plague ship.
  • And Starring: "With Roger Cross and Zoie Palmer" (Six and the Android) in the opening credits of each episode.
  • Anyone Can Die:
    • I'm sorry, did you think Derrick Moss AKA One was the main character? Well, the first episode of Season Two would like to very violently disabuse you of that notion.
    • And in his very next appearance, Jace Corso (played by the same actor as One) was killed by Two in revenge. Just in case you thought he was supposed to replace One as the White Male Lead.
    • According to Word of God from Joseph Mallozzi, this was enforced by Executive Meddling. All six numbered characters were originally intended to survive throughout the show, but the execs mandated that they kill off the first-billed main cast member at the start of Season 2 because they had the idea that Anyone Can Die would be a fun trope to use, inspired by Game of Thrones. The cast and crew have made it clear on Reddit and in blog posts that they still aren't happy about it many years later.invoked
    • Devon joined in season 2 with a skill set that would be a useful addition to the crew (he's a medic and the crew doesn't have one yet), and a Nice Guy personality tailor-made to replace the recently-killed One, alongside a subplot about his drug addiction that seemed to set him up for a lengthy bit of character development. Despite this promise he's killed off fairly quickly.
    • Season 3 opens with the reveal that Misaki's assassination of Nyx was successful. She appears in the premiere, but only as a mental image giving encouragement to Two while the latter is low on oxygen.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: Lampshaded by Three in "All the Time in the World" when the others don't believe he's stuck in a "Groundhog Day" Loop:
    Three: Look. I realize this is a little hard to believe, but come on, guys. I've been possessed by an alien. We've all met alternate reality versions of ourselves. In the scheme of things, not that big a stretch. We are caught in a time loop, people. Deal with it.
    • Even so, they remain unconvinced until he parrots some phrases in French (when Three isn't exactly an expert linguist) that the Android recognizes as a description of a not-yet-detected technical problem with the ship, told to him by her on a previous go-around.
  • Artificial Gravity: The ship is equipped with this, but unlike most examples of this trope the artificial gravity can be overcome by extreme maneuvers.
  • Artificial Human: Two, which is noted to be highly illegal.
  • Ask a Stupid Question...: Two and Nyx, as the latter reveals she has intelligence that can aid their prison escape.
    Two: "And what do you want in return, Nyx?"
    Nyx: "Your extra pillow and a hug goodbye. What do you think it is I want?" (To escape with them. She wants to escape with them.)
  • The Atoner: The adult crew as a whole, but also applies to Six in Season Two after turning the others in to the authorities at the end of Season One, and Four in the planned Season Four after reclaiming his throne and turning against the crew at the end of Season Two.
  • Attack Drone: A security drone attacks Anders and Three in "Being Better is So Much Harder". It wounds Anders, forcing him to rely on Three.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning: A dark example in "Sometimes in Life You Don't Get to Choose", Four convinces his half-brother to step down as emperor and cede the throne to him. Four repays this by having him killed along with the Empress.
  • Awful Truth: The First-Episode Twist below.
  • BFG: Early on Three arms himself with an enormous energy weapon that is almost as big as he is. Once the ship's vault is opened in "Episode Seven", he immediately claims the biggest gun in the stash inside, a large sniper rifle.
  • Bait-and-Switch: "One Last Card to Play" opens with a genius one. Two and Three are shown among the civilian political prisoners on an Ishida transport ship and seem to rescue a woman and take the ship over. But then they flush the rest of the prisoners into space and shoot the woman and it turns out they're the Alternate Universe versions of Portia and Marcus, here in the primary universe to cause trouble.
  • Becoming the Mask: One and Six. At first involuntarily thanks to the memory wipe making them forget they weren't really the wanted criminals they were posing as (and even when One found out he wasn't Jace Corso, he had no idea who he actually was for some time, leaving him with "member of the Raza mercenary crew" as the only identity for him to latch onto). Then after Six finds out about his undercover mission for the Galactic Authority and betrays the crew, he changes his mind and helps them escape, becoming an outlaw for real in a more informed way. The same would have been true for One in the original Season 2 outline where he helped orchestrate the escape and joined back up with the crew, had he not been killed off by Executive Meddling.invoked
  • Been There, Shaped History: When the crew travel into the past, a boy named Jake Connor finds out they are space travelers. Upon their return to the future, to verify they had not altered the timeline, Android runs a check on everyone they interacted with and discovers his granddaughter Christine, inspired by the tales of space travel he told her, invented the first hyperdrive.
  • Better to Die than Be Killed: In "We Voted Not to Space You", Kierken and his GA troops are in a face-off with Two and Three, with Four as Kierken's hostage. Kierken tries to press that advantage, pointing out that they might hit Four if they start a shootout. Three replies that Four is probably okay with that, and knowing what his stepmother and her supporters will do to him if he's brought back as a prisoner, Four readily confirms it.
  • Big Brother Instinct: "Big Brother and Sister Instinct". The adult crew (and the Android) towards Five whenever she is or might be in danger, even though she becomes increasingly able to handle herself. Showcased most often with Two and Six, but One and Four also feel that way, and while it takes time to develop in Three's case, it's unquestionable later on.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Just when our heroes are cornered and about to be killed in the fusion power plant building in "Episode Two", Two shows up with two Mikkei Combine cruisers in orbit, making Ferrous Corp call their troops back and eventually leave as the colony is now under the other corporation's jurisdiction.
  • The Big Guy: Six is the largest and most physically intimidating member of the crew, but his friendly demeanor softens him somewhat. When the crew begin to suspect each other of sabotage in the Season One finale, they figure that he would be the one most difficult to physically overpower.
  • Bilingual Bonus:
    • The Raza is rumored to be a ruthless alien race, before we find out it's really a ship of brutal mercenaries. However, "raza" means "race" in Spanish.
    • The name "Raza" can also refer to the Latin phrase "tabula rasa", which means Blank Slate. Which the whole crew are because their memories were wiped to a blank slate.
    • At the end of "Sometimes in Life You Don't Get to Choose," Four issues a command to have his brother, stepmother and their guards killed by saying "Korose", which can translate to "Kill them" in Japanese.
    • Three learns French from the Android while caught in the time loop in "All the Time in the World", as a way to demonstrate the loop to the others on later repeats. The French dialogue here works because Anthony Lemke is fluent in both English and French.
  • Blackmail: After he finds out that One isn't the real Jace Corso, Three decides to blackmail him for his support in all votes instead of telling the others. It lasts an episode before One gets tired of it and refuses to play along further, though Three doesn't reveal his hand. One is forced to reveal the truth in "Episode Eight", as Four also finds out and he's not the blackmail type.
  • Blind Jump:
    • Defied in the pilot. The risks are so great that even with missiles seconds away from hitting them, the crew will not risk doing this.
    • In "It Doesn't Have to Be Like This", doing this with the Blink Drive can transport an object to a "null space" between dimensions, a pocket of space that will contain the object temporarily until it collapses back onto itself, unless the Blink Drive is used again with actual coordinates. It helps that they were trying to jump an entire station without having adequately prepared the technology.
  • Bloodless Carnage: When Four uses his sword there is blood on it, but not blood spurting from wounds as there would be in Real Life.
  • Bookends:
    • Nyx started and ended the second season in a catfight.
    • The second season began and ended with the crew suffering a major loss (One and Nyx) while in dire straits and not knowing about it until later on.
  • Bottle Episode: Several episodes are set all within the Raza and nowhere else.
  • Bottomless Magazines: Averted during the firefight in "Episode Two". One and Three run out of ammo for their rifles and have to switch to their sidearms for the reminder of the battle.
  • Brain Uploading: A copy of Sarah's mind has been secretly saved in the ship's computer by Five after she died in Season 1. This comes into play in Season 3.
  • Brainwashing for the Greater Good: Arguably what Five did by creating the memory-wiping code, which reset the crew to blank slates and gave them the opportunity to become better people this time around. She had only intended to wipe Two and Four's memories of the fact that Six was a cop, so they wouldn't murder him, but the code was rushed and ended up giving everyone Identity Amnesia.
  • Brick Joke:
    • In "Episode Four", Five complains that she couldn't buy welding goggles due to the crew having to bail from the station. In "Episode Nine", she finally got a pair.
    • In "Going Out Fighting", the Android steals Five's mug of hot chocolate. In "Sometimes in Life You Don't Get to Choose", she's having another.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: Implied with Vons and Tash, two of the mercenaries in Wexler's crew in "Episode Ten" and "Episode Eleven". Three asks the pair of blonds if they are brother and sister, and Tash replies that they prefer not to let their relationship be defined by outdated social categories.
    Three: Oh-kay...
  • Call-Back:
    • In "Episode Two", Two leaves rest of the team stranded on the planet, only to come back with Mikkei ships in tow. In "Episode Twelve", the team leaves Two in the Dwarf Star facility, only to regroup and come back to rescue her.
    • In Season One, Bubba can fire off one or two shots before its battery is depleted. In the first episode of Season Two, Anders tells Six he fixed it, and Five uses it to clear her way of escape in the next episode.
    • In "We Were Family", Three is called Titch by his old mentor, revealing that it was his memories Five was stuck in back in "Episode Six".
    • In "Stuff to Steal, People to Kill", the evil Alternate Universe Raza crew who never lost their memories have been sent by Ferrous Corp to deal with a rebellious mining colony, like in Dark Matter's pilot episode (though presumably not the same one; the AU crew would have already dealt with that one weeks ago if the timeline's congruent, and they say they do this same thing a lot). This time it has a much more tragic ending, with the colony being nuked by a missile launched from the Alt Raza by Jace Corso's Alt self.
      • Also in the episode, Truffault is an enemy of the Alt Raza's, with the introduction to the alt universe featuring them in a dog fight with her warships. As they never sided with the miners, the Alt Raza crew still work with Ferrous Corp even into the Corporate War.
    • In "We Should Have Seen That Coming", Four gives Milo a knife so he can commit suicide after being handed back to the Seers. In "Sometimes in Life You Don't Get to Choose", Seer leader Hansmeed shows the knife to Nyx in order to turn her against Four.
  • Casting Gag: In episode 2 of season 3, Zairon's secret research facility's head researchers are played by Paul Sun-Hyung Lee and Jean Yoon, better recognised as Appa and Umma Kim in Kim's Convenience.
  • Casual Interplanetary Travel: Even without FTL, the ships in the setting can travel quite fast at sub-light speeds. A distance of 7 light minutes note  can be covered in a matter of hours.
  • Chekhov's Boomerang: In "Episode Ten", the mercenaries that the crew are forced to work with steal a shock stick from the security guards of the base that they are robbing, then later use that same shock stick to disable the Android. In the next episode, the shock stick is used again to disable the Android by a traitor within the crew.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The showrunners' favorite narrative device. Many plot threads are set up in the background long before they come into action.
    • The Transfer Transit service advertised in "Episode Four" is a major plot point in "Episode Eight". It's then used repeatedly throughout the series from then on.
    • The strange black keycard stolen by Five and analyzed by the Android in the beginning of the series turns out to be a part of Season 2's MacGuffin, the Blink Drive.
    • A literal case is the pistol Five discovers in "Episode Three", which gets used to great effect in "Episode Eleven".
    • The Zairon shuttle used to escape Hyperion-8 in "Kill Them All" comes back in "Sometimes In Life You Don't Get to Choose" as a part of Four's plan to regain the throne.
    • Alexander Rook's mysterious bedridden superior from "Episode Twelve" and the black goop Three is infected with in "Going Out Fighting" are parts of a terrifying Chekhov's Gun that is Dwarf Star Technologies in its entirety, and that one fires in "The Dwarf Star Conspiracy".
    • The thoughtful look Five gets after Sarah dies in "Episode Seven" is because she's figured she can save Sarah's digital consciousness from the stasis pod to a storage device - though she doesn't say anything because she doesn't want to get people's hopes up. By the start of Season Three, she's gotten digital Sarah uploaded to the ship's computer.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: In contrast to our crew, the Raza crew from the Alternate Universe where the mindwipe never happened demonstrate very little loyalty to each other, with Jace Corso and Tash both playing Starscream to Portia Lin and Marcus Boone (who unfortunately are really Two and Three Impersonating the Evil Twin at the moment) in "Stuff to Steal, People to Kill". This was a Shout-Out to the attempted coup the original ''Star Trek'' crew ran afoul of in the Mirror Universe in "Mirror, Mirror". Later, in "One Last Card to Play", AU Wexler is used as bait for our heroes by his crewmates without his knowledge, leading him to part ways with them and would have joined the primary universe crew at the start of the planned Season Four. If Season Four had happened, AU Portia and AU Marcus would even have turned on each other, despite being former fuck buddies, as Portia considered Marcus's increasing alcoholism a liability.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: As the series progresses, the crew of the Raza become more and more prone to helping people in need instead of acting as the criminals that they are supposed to be. By the end of the second season it's gotten to the point that they take it upon themselves to save the entire galaxy from all-out Corporate Warfare. Three lampshades this in the Season 2 finale "But First We Save the Galaxy", to which Two promises him that they'll steal something once the job is done and he can pick the target.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Four's ex Misaki is a deadly version.
  • Comic Sutra: Wendy the entertainment android is programmed with a wide array of sexual techniques, the names of which leave One much confused… and intrigued. This was cut from the British broadcast as not suitable for a pre-watershed time slot.
    One: I was actually about to lie down.
    Wendy: Excellent. Would you like me to join? I'm adept at a wide variety of contemporary erotic techniques: quasaring, the infinite moebius, dunking the cosmic donut…
    One: That's… I really shouldn't. [beat] Um, wait. What was that last one?
    • Three asks the same question of Wendy ([beat] "What was that last one?") in the midst of a Wendy-inflicted beat-down later in the same episode.
  • Consummate Liar: Three can come up with an entirely plausible cover story on the spot and sell it very convincingly.
  • Continuity Nod: In "Sometimes In Life You Don't Get to Choose", there's a green nutrition bar laying in front of Six on the mess hall table, a reference to his secret hoarding of those in Season 1.
  • Convenient Replacement Character:
    • Adrian Maro, introduced in 3x03, is a replacement for the crew's "talent" agent/handler Tabor Calchek, his former boss; his introductory spiel indicates Calchek's actor (David Hewlett) was unavailable for a continuing role aboard the Raza.
    • Solara Shockley, also introduced in 3x03 as Adrian's bodyguard, seems to be one for Nyx Harper.
  • Cool Starship:
    • The protagonists' ship, the Raza. One Ferrous Corp captain said it would be a pity to be forced to destroy such a nice ship if the crew did not surrender, and Wexler's team of mercenaries considered gaining control of the Raza as an incentive to betray the crew.
    • Zairon seems to exclusively stock its fleet with warships that look way cooler than anything anyone else is using. Their ships tend to be sharper designed with brightly coloured plating that resembles something right out of an anime. This makes sense, since Zairon was the showrunners' way of incorporating tropes from "swords in space" anime they were fans of into the series. It extends to the inside of the ships as well, with Alt Wexler noting that the bridge of the Alt crew's hijacked Zairon cruiser has a real "all hail our glorious leader" feel to it.
  • Corporate Warfare: The multi-corps have their own warships and private armies to protect their assets. Some of them can be pretty big. An all-out Corporate War erupts at the end of Season Two.
  • Crapsack World: The galaxy is not a nice place to hang around. The multi-corps have the run of the place, fielding their own private armies, the Space Police is compromised and interested only in keeping the balance between the multi-corps (and increasing their own budget), and La Résistance against this state of affairs is a bunch of terrorists who don't mind slaughtering thousands of civilians just to send a message. And that doesn't even get us started on the galactic criminal element, the Raza crew being only one example of many. Slavery exists in the more lawless corners of the galaxy, and some planets have brought back absolute monarchy.
  • Criminal Amnesiac: Played With with One and Six. Neither was actually a criminal before the mindwipe - Six was an undercover cop and One was only there to get revenge on Three - but now that they've forgotten their pasts they believe that they were criminals, and they continue to function as part of a crew of mercenaries and do things like taking part in heists. However, both of them remain among the more moral members of the Raza crew, which is one reason why the crew as a whole avoid falling back into being the ethically barren, mass-murdering kind of mercenary.
  • Culture Chop Suey: The Principality of Zairon is fairly consistent in being based on feudal Japan, except for the fact that the Empress once wears a cheongsam-like outfit (cheongsams are Chinese) with a headpiece that involves a paper fan hanging over her forehead acting as a veil and that the architecture of the imperial palace is distinctly that of a European castle. Possibly justified because it's six centuries in the future and cultural diffusion is a thing. Historically too, the Japanese adopted many aspects of Chinese culture (even their alphabet).
  • Death of a Child: The crew finds the corpse of a young boy hidden in the cargo hold, killed by a gunshot wound. He was a friend of Five, having stowed away on the ship with her to find medicine after he was shot by a crook she pickpocketed. Unfortunately, Five was caught by the Raza crew, and while they voted to keep her around by a narrow margin on the strength of her skills with tech, T.J. bled to death in the meantime.
  • Decadent Court: In the imperial court of Zairon, almost all the members of the imperial household seem to hate each other. Ultimately, when the Emperor banishes his second son so that his heir will not be seen as weak and having contest for the throne, the Emperor is murdered by his wife and the Crown Prince is framed. He is forced to go on the run, and the second son becomes Emperor himself.
  • Deceptively Human Robots: The Android looks exactly like a human woman, but any interaction with her will quickly tell you that she's not. As the season progresses she begins to assume more human-like traits, but worries that this might be due to a flaw in her programming. This turns out to be intentional: the Android was designed in the likeness of Two's longtime caretaker Dr Shaw and had the emotional programming deliberately hidden in her firmware, and pre-memory wipe, Portia had Emily/Das try to access and activate it for some reason.
  • Deliberate Injury Gambit: On Hyperion-8, a fellow inmate tells Three that he can get out of working by injuring himself so he'll have to stay in Medical to recover. Subverted when the inmate ends up put in the psych ward for Self-Harm and is subjected to electroshock therapy, so Three quickly writes that idea off. It's played straight later when they need to buy some time for Two to return so they injure Four so the Zairon envoy can't take him right away, but this falls through when she insists on taking him despite his potential concussion.
  • Determined Homesteader: The settlers in the pilot are determined to stay on their planet even with the semi-mythic Raza coming to kill them. As their leader points out, people like them don't really have anywhere else to go, so they might as well stay and fight for their new home.
  • Diplomatic Impunity: After retaking the throne of Zairon, Four shows up at the corporate summit on Eos-7, causing GA Inspector Kierken to mention his disappointment at being unable to arrest a head of state.
  • Dissonant Serenity: The Android, who calmly announces that an approaching ship is likely not coming to help them, since it's firing missiles in their direction.
  • Divide and Conquer: Two points out that because of their power and resources, the only effective way of dealing with the multi-corps is to play them against each other.
  • Do Not Call Me "Paul": In the second episode, Two orders the Android in no uncertain terms to not call her Portia, since she had discovered that "Portia Lin" was a dangerous criminal. She no longer wants to be that person.
  • Doomsday Device: The item the crew steals from Traugott Corp in "Episode Ten" is powerful enough to blow up an entire planet. The newscaster in the succeeding episode even calls it one.
  • The Dreaded: The Raza, dreaded enforcers employed by Ferrous Corp. Rumors make them out to be seven-foot tall half-human half-reptile aliens with skin that burns. It is stated no one has ever survived encountering them, and thus their true identity isn't known. They turn out to be the protagonists themselves; there are no aliens, the Raza is the name of their ship.
  • Driven to Suicide:
    • Memory flashbacks reveal that Six tried to kill himself after learning that he had been tricked into aiding a mass murder while part of a revolutionary movement. However, his gun was empty from executing his comrades, and clicked empty when he pulled the trigger.
    • The android Anya kills herself by electrocution in anxiety over the fact that she's broadcasting her location with a subspace transponder, endangering her fellow rogue androids.
  • Driving Question: Who removed the crew's memories, and why stick them in Five's brain? If the mindwipe was not supposed to get all of them, then who was the specific target? Two and Three, while discussing it, believe that Four, Five and Six are likely innocent, as it would not benefit them in any apparent way to do it. That leaves Three, Two and One. The Season 1 finale reveals that it was Five who created the mindwiping code and Six who uploaded it, and she was trying to save Six from being murdered by Two and Four, who had discovered he was an undercover cop. However, it remains unknown how all their memories got put into her.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: Although the premise of the pilot episode is that the crew have awakened while on a journey long enough to require them to go into stasis to conserve resources, neither they nor anyone else in the series is shown having to do this again, and they often travel between locations that should logically be quite far from each other between scenes of an episode.
  • Earth-Shattering Kaboom: In "Episode Eleven", the device the crew stole in the previous episode is activated. It destabilizes in short order, and the resulting chain reaction causes the planet's entire gravitational field to collapse. The end result is that Iriden 3 is rendered a lifeless ball of debris.
  • Easily Forgiven:
    • In "Episode Three", Three and Four disagree when the rest of the crew want to take a risk to save the Android, and attempt to buck the group decision by jumping to FTL. After they're foiled, Two lets it go because they didn't mean the rest of the human crew any harm by it.
    • In "Episode Seven", Three tells One that it's not his fault after his pushing to activate Wendy the entertainment android starts a chain of events that leads to Sarah's stasis pod losing power, since he didn't give Sarah her disease or program Wendy.
    • Surprisingly, Three averts this in Season Two. He has yet to forgive Six for giving them up to the GA. He is also the only one pissed at Nyx for lying to them about her brother.
    • Subverted from the Season 2 finale onward when Four reasserts himself as Ryo Ishida and becomes Emperor of Zairon, stealing the Blink Drive from the Raza and inadvertently getting Nyx killed by Misaki. The rest of the crew most definitely hold it against him.
  • Eating the Eye Candy: When Two leaves the shuttle, One, Three and Six all turn around to check out her Supermodel Strut admiringly. Four is the only one that doesn't partake. Two lampshades this the following episode, when she's walking away from One with the same Supermodel Strut and without turning round tells him to stop staring at her ass.
  • Eternal English: Some six centuries in the future, English is basically the same. Possibly justified if mass media helped to preserve the continuity of the language. Screens also display a fictional "galactic script" alongside English, but we never hear it spoken.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Though they are all wanted criminals, Three is regarded by the crew as the most violent and least moral among them.
    Three: (re:Tabor Calchek) I don't know. Seems like a scumbag to me.
    [The crew looks at him.]
    Three: What? I'm not allowed to have standards?
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": The General and the Empress are never referred to by their given names, which aren't even revealed to the audience. Only a post on showrunner Joseph Mallozzi's daily blog reveals the Empress's name to be Katsumi. Also, despite all her characterization, the Android is simply "the Android" for most of the series, though this justified by the human crew also not using names. In the Season 3 episode "Built, Not Born", they learn that the Android's given name before the mindwipe was Suki, though it's still rarely used.
  • Everyone Is a Suspect: The arc of Season 1 is one of these mysteries. At the end of the "Episode 2", the crew learn via Five's subconscious that one of their own number is responsible for wiping their memories, but they all pass the truth test in "Episode 3", confirming that whoever it is wiped their own memories as well. This apparently leaves them with no way of figuring out who it was or why they did it. In particular, One and Three often cast suspicion on each other, with One not trusting Three's selfish attitude and Three already knowing that there's at least one thing One is definitely lying about. The truth isn't revealed until the season finale. It was Six, who was an undercover cop, using a program Five wrote to save his life because he'd been kind to her.
  • Evil Counterpart: The Alternate Universe in "Stuff to Steal, People to Kill" has evil versions of Two, Three and Four who retained their memories. Portia Lin and Marcus Boone are still raiders, while Ryo Ishida successfully took back his throne in a brutal coup. Jace Corso (seemingly the real one) is also part of the crew, as are Wexler and Tash (whose primary counterparts were also evil and died in "Episode 11"). Six was killed before he could betray the crew, and Five never joined and so wasn't around to save his life by creating the mindwipe code for whatever reason.
  • Evil Twin: In addition to the AU counterparts mentioned above, in the primary universe, One isn't actually Jace Corso but an imposter who took his place - with an agenda to kill Marcus Boone - when Corso was supposed to join the Raza crew, and there's a real one out there who still has his memories. They look exactly alike, except their fashion choices make it very clear which one's good and which one's evil, and the real Corso seems, if anything, even more of a Psycho for Hire than the rest of the crew were pre-mindwipe, in contrast to One being the crewmember who best fits bill of The Hero (without being The Leader).
  • Expendable Clone: Transfer Transit is a transit service which uses subspace Brain Uploading and cloning to create an identical copy of an individual at a given location. The clone spends up to three days there (any longer and Clone Degeneration sets in) then has any new memories in their brain sent back while the clone is recycled. None of the hassle of stasis or FTL, all of the fun from the destination. If the clone is killed, the user just wakes up early with no memory of what happened at the other place. Six uses this to track down an old enemy in "Episode Eight". In the process of tracking Six down, One's true face is finally shown, as his clone is made from his DNA and his Surgical Impersonation of Jace Corso doesn't carry over. It's used fairly liberally from Season 2 onward by all sides starting with "She's One of Them Now", as the crew steal some pods from Transfer Transit and now have them onboard the ship itself instead of having to use pods on a space station.
  • Family of Choice: One of the biggest draws of the series is that by the end of Season One, the crew have become this, as Five in particular emphasizes throughout the show. Which makes Six's act of betrayal (following a fadeout from a scene of them all laughing and dining together in the mess hall after rescuing Two from Dwarf Star), and later Four's, all the more painful.
  • Fanservice: Wendy the entertainment android wears an outfit that's all vinyl and mesh. In-Universe, being attractive is part of her design. The same episode begins with Two casually talking with One while she's getting dressed after her bath, and ends with a Shirtless Scene of One with a towel wrapped around him, this time with Two fully dressed.
  • Fantastic Drug: Shadow, a high-grade hallucinogenic compound used as a recreational drug.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: The Principality of Zairon (Four's place of origin) is basically Imperial Japan in space, with an emperor, samurai swords, and Japanese clothes and naming conventions. Many of its citizens are ethnically Japanese, though not all: Alex Mallari Jr (Four's actor) himself is of Filipino ancestry, Ryo's old mentor Teku is black, General Drago is Hispanic, Colonel Orlov who ends up sans head for proclaiming his loyalty to Hiro in front of Ryo is white, and a number of the officers and palace guards shown are white or black. The showrunners freely admit Zairon was pure Rule of Cool to incorporate their love of anime into the show, outweighing any implausibility inherent in a Feudal Future.
    • According to showrunner Joseph Mallozzi on Reddit, Zairon's enemy, the Republic of Pyr, is also Japanese-based.
  • Faster-Than-Light Travel:
    • As part of the setting, ships use a variation of the Warp drive method to travel at faster-than-light speeds, termed simply "FTL". It works by creating a distortion in space-time that moves faster than the speed of light, pulling the ship along with it. Going from one end of the galaxy to the other would take months, with refueling stops. Small shuttles are limited to sublight speeds only, but the Raza and larger ships have the technology.
    • "She's One of Them Now" introduces the Blink Drive, a device that can turn a regular FTL drive into a wormhole generator that can transport a ship anywhere in the galaxy in an instant. The keycard Five stole is the final piece of the prototype, and the crew manages to steal the rest of it. After an unexpected trip to an Alternate Universe, they manage to get it working.
  • Feudal Future: In the galaxy, some independent territories are monarchies. One of them, the Principality of Zairon, is relevant to the plot and ruled by an Emperor. Four is the heir to the throne and wanted for the assassination of the Emperor. Four's stepmother framed him for it to put her son on the throne, forcing Four to go on the run.
  • First-Episode Twist: The crew of the ship were ruthless criminals and enforcers for Ferrous Corp before having their memories erased. Their ship is named the Raza, which is known and feared for their mercenary work.
    One: What's going on?
    Two: The Android managed to recover a significant amount of data related to this ship and its crew.
    Six: Well, that's good. Isn't it?
    The Android: Marcus Boone (mugshot of Three) - Murder, Assault, Kidnapping, Piracy.
    Griffin Jones (mugshot of Six) - Murder, Assault, Smuggling.
    Jace Corso (mugshot of One) - Murder, Assault, Kidnapping, Trafficking, Theft.
    Ryo Tetsudo (security camera footage of Four) - Murder, Assault, Piracy.
    Portia Lin (security camera footage of Two) - Murder, Assault, Arson, Theft, Piracy.
    Two: Turns out the Raza aren't a race of aliens. "The Raza" is the name of this ship. We're not here to help these people. We're here to kill them.
    One: No! That's impossible! That can't be right. Can it?
    The Android: I recovered the information from a fragment of the ship's logs related to the crew list. There's no reason to doubt its veracity.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: The crew of the Raza have trouble adjusting to 21st century Earth, and except for the Android, who has access to extensive data files about the period, are pretty ignorant of contemporary life (Six even wonders if flush toilets have been invented yet). In particular the Android stands out due to her odd syntax. It takes almost no time until some kids follow them to the Marauder and find out they're not who they say.
  • Follow the Chaos: Discussed in "Wish I'd Spaced You When I Had The Chance", when the crew is planning to raid a GA base to rescue Three and Five. When Two wonders if Three and Five will know they're coming, Four points out that they'll likely deduce who's responsible for the explosions, shooting, and screaming. It ends up being unnecessary, anyway, since Three and Five have managed to avoid capture counter to their assumptions.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • In "Episode One", when the crew quarters are discovered we are shown Three and Four each sleeping in the middle of their bed. One, however, sleeps on one side of the bed, an advance clue to the fact that he is used to sleeping next to somebody.
    • Also in "Episode One", when the Android is trying to recover data from the ship's computer, a glitchy image of Tabor Calchek, the crew's handler whom they'll meet in "Episode Five", appears.
    • In "Episode Four", a DNA scan flags Six for immediate capture. Though Two writes it off as them being criminals, Six argues that the station must deal with such people regularly and that would not merit such specific attention. Two episodes later, it is revealed that Six's original self was tricked into aiding the destruction of a space station with 10,000 civilians while he was a member of an anti-corporate terrorist movement, and is the only suspect identified for that mass murder.
    • In "Episode Six", Six tells Five that the happy farm childhood memory she wanted to stay in would eventually come to a violent end of some kind. In "We Were Family", it turns out that it did - and it was Three's childhood.
    • During one of Six's memories in "Episode Six", Arrakis Sadr is mentioned as the place the General has gone to coordinate the Insurrection's next campaign. Six uses this information in "Episode Eight" to pinpoint the station the General must be using to channel his supplies.
    • One has the strongest reaction upon learning that he is a part of a band of mercenaries, and while he gets along with everyone else, he seems to dislike Three. Turns out that he isn't even one of them. He stole Jace Corso's face and infiltrated the team in order to kill Three for possibly killing his wife. And of course he learns this when he and Three were actually starting to tolerate each other a little.
    • An image of Sarah in a white room appears in Five's mind in the Season 3 premiere. In "Welcome to the Revolution", it's revealed that a copy of Sarah's mind was saved in the ship's computer.
    • In "All the Time in the World" the Android meets an elderly version of Five during a time jump, who reveals cryptic references to future plotlines. Word of God is that all of them were planned to be featured during the run of the show. The list is out of order, and at least two of the things happen later in Season 3. invoked
      Android: Please tell me. What awaits us?
      Old Five: So much... Dwarf Star's conspiracy, the Doubled Deception, Kryden, Carina, the Accelerated, the Fall of the House of Ishida, a meeting with your creator, the Black Ships.
      Android: What does it all mean?
      Old Five: Not a happy ending for everyone, but a positive result for the rest of the galaxy.
    • For the most of the series, Two is shown to be in charge of the Raza. "Built, Not Born" reveals why: she commandeered it and had the Android linked to the ship's systems.
  • Frameup: Ryo Ishida aka Four is wanted all over the galaxy for regicide and patricide, but the memories of the event seen by Five show that he was framed by his stepmother.
    • Likewise, Marcus Boone aka Three didn't actually kill Catherine Moss. It was a hit ordered by Darius van Hoeven, and Derrick Moss was the actual intended target; Boone was just a convenient fall guy.
  • Freudian Excuse: Two, Three and Four's original selves all turn out to have them. Portia Lin, originally named Rebecca, was a Phlebotinum Rebel Artificial Human who was tortured and experimented on by her creators before she escaped; Marcus Boone was raised a criminal by the murderer of his parents; Ryo Ishida was a prince framed for his father's murder by his stepmother and forced to flee for his life and kill to survive.
  • Freudian Trio: With Three as the Id, One or Six as the Superego and Two as the Ego. In One, Two and Three's case, they're also a downplayed Love Triangle.
  • Friends with Benefits: Two and Three in "Episode 5". After Two and One start hooking up in "Episode 7" onwards, Two insists it's this but One is clearly interested in more and Two's denial of emotional attachment rings hollow.
  • Gambit Pileup: The crew's incarceration on Hyperion-8 triggers one of these. Traugott Corp, Mikkei Combine, the Galactic Authority and at least two unknown parties all put plans in motion to either silence them, get them to talk or bust them out. And they all run into each other.
    • In the Season 2 finale, "But First We Save the Galaxy", stopping the plot to destroy the Eos-7 space station during a corporate summit turns into this, involving Ferrous, the Raza crew and the Zairon delegation headed by Four.
  • Gamer Chick: When stranded in the past, bored with the adults' socializing, Five goes upstairs and finds a 21st century gaming console, getting to level 8 despite never having played the game before. After they return from the past with the console as a farewell present, one of the last scenes of the episode is Five playing a game with Two and laughing as they try to outscore each other.
  • Gilligan Cut:
    • In "Episode Ten", they are sneaking aboard a Corp station for a heist, but do not have a cover identity for Five.
      "So how are we going to get her onto the station?"
      [Cut to shuttle arriving at station and crew coming aboard with large toolbox.]
    • In "Episode Twelve", they have dropped the Android onto a planet's surface in order to infiltrate and disable the defenses of a facility.
      Six: [The Android] has to do this quietly without drawing any attention to herself.
      [Cut to the Android barging into a locker room and kicking ass.]
  • A Glitch in the Matrix: "Wish I Could Believe You" has Six trapped in a Lotus-Eater Machine designed to make him give up the secret location of the Independent Colonies' conference. He's first thrown off when all the text in the simulation is gibberish and he keeps blacking out only to wake up back in the infirmary. He also sees flashes of his suppressed memories. After the ones responsible notice and correct for the first two problems, the memory flashes tip him off again and he deliberately derails the simulation to break out of it and turn the tables on his captors.
  • Good Parents: A member of the crew apparently had them. Five finds the recollection of the boy's childhood so idyllic that she would rather waste away in his memories than return to reality and live. Six points out that, some way or another, it is all going to go wrong because the person who had this childhood still wound up as a criminal on the ship. "Maybe the dad comes home drunk one day and kills the mom. Maybe terrorists set off a bomb." Five and Six believe the boy was One, but it could just as easily have been Three. It turns out it was Three, and they were good parents right up until some drifter they took in got drunk and killed them. The drifter, Tanner, then raised Three as a criminal.
  • Grand Theft Me: In "Hot Chocolate", the Android's body is taken over by a hacker so his employers can hijack the ship.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: After One has Wendy activated, the Android is very obviously envious of the enthusiasm the crew shows towards Wendy's capabilities. Five reassures the Android of her necessity, and she later decides to accept Wendy. Then Wendy shoots her because she's been activated as a Killer Robot.
  • "Groundhog Day" Loop: Three ends up trapped in one thanks to a time-looping clock brought onboard in "All the Time in the World" by Adrian Maro. Destroying it solves the problem, but in the process the Android ends up skipping into the future and seeing some disturbing things.
  • Guns Akimbo:
    • Three is introduced wielding two pistols, and frequently returns to the posture when he is not wielding his BFG.
    • Two and Six are comfortable with this gun stance and wield it as required by the circumstances.
    • In the Season 3 premiere, Commander Truffault employs two pistols as she helps defend the Raza from Ferrous troops.
  • Gun Nut: Three either went into stasis armed or located a gun right after awakening, and when he discovers that the cargo hold is full of military grade weapons he is like a kid in a candy store. He then chooses the biggest gun available as his personal weapon.
  • Heal It With Fire: When Three is shot, he has Five cauterize the wound with a hot plate. While this works in the short term, he's still in pretty bad shape and has to be patched up at the ship to actually get better.
  • The Heart: In Season 3, Ryo gets his old mentor Teku to serve this role in his court. Much to Misaki's chagrin.
  • Heroic Suicide: With encouragement from Four, Nyx's brother Milo kills himself in "We Should Have Seen This Coming" rather than be used again by the Seers to further their aims.
  • Hired Guns: In addition to their own military forces, the multi-corps also employ ruthless mercenaries as enforcers to clean up loose ends and trouble spots.
  • History Repeats:
    • Throughout the first two seasons harming Five appears to be the crew's Berserk Button, most noticeably with Two, which seems to become a theme within the show: Five being slapped and then the person who slapped her is given a Karmic Death. Two straight up murders the Casino Manager in "Episode Four" for slapping Five. In "Episode Eleven", Tash slaps Five and ends up with Two snapping her neck. Also when Chief Inspector Shaddick - once again - slaps Five and holds a gun to her head the Android not only kills all the GA troops present but takes her time with Shaddick. And in Season 3, the mercenary Ash tries to choke Five and ends up lethally stuck in a wall after trying to dodge Two and Three's gunfire.
    • In the second season, Nyx's brother Milo gives an ominous warning that another Raza crewmember is liable to betray them once again. Before the season ends, Four gets his memories back, returns to Zairon to become Emperor, then plots to steal the Blink Drive from the Raza so he can mass produce it for his own fleet.
  • Homosexual Reproduction: "My Final Gift to You" reveals that Two's original self had a daughter with the woman she loved. The exact method isn't made clear, but the setting certainly has the tech to combine genetic material in such a fashion. Joe Mallozzi confirmed on Reddit that the daughter in question was vat-born.
  • Hostage for MacGuffin: In "Episode Ten", another mercenary group threatens to space Two if the crew doesn't give them the code to the vault. Three gives up the code (and One was about to as well), but they space her anyway.
  • Hufflepuff House: The League of Autonomous Worlds, which issues pronouncements every so often but never directly intervenes with the plot. Zairon is a member but its war with Pyr is considered an internal matter and the League is choosing not to interfere. They could force a ceasefire, but this would cost Zairon half its territory and Zairon desperately doesn't want that to happen.
  • Human Popsicle: The Seers' ship keeps people with predictive abilities on board this way.
  • Hyperspeed Escape: The crew resorts to jumping to FTL when somebody shoots missiles at them and their weapons are down.
  • Hypocrite:
    • Two insists to the team that they can't keep any secrets from each other if they're going to work effectively as a unit. The Android then privately calls Two out on hiding her Healing Factor from the rest of the group.
    • When captured by Dwarf Star Technologies, her creators, Two encounters a doctor who is far more cold and blunt with her compared to the Faux Affably Evil Alexander Rook. The reason is that many of his colleagues were in the facility when she made her escape and he's seen the security tapes of the bloodbath she left behind in her wake. As such, he considers her an irredeemable monster and wants her destroyed. Bear in mind he's a scientist actively and knowingly working for a company specialising in creating artificial humans, whose practices include torturing sentient entities, and when given the task of "disassembling" her and removing her brain, gloats that he could have her put under so that she doesn't feel the process, but wants to test her pain receptors (and ostensibly, punish her for her escape attempts and previous actions). He's demonstratively far more of a monster than she is, particularly considering that the aforementioned bloodbath wasn't exactly an unprovoked slaughter of innocents.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Three calls Talbor a conniving, thieving opportunist. The rest of the crew just stares at him, causing him to grumble "Yeah, yeah."
  • I Ate WHAT?!: On a stop at a space station, the crew are enjoying lunch until Two tells them that the sandwiches are made with mealworms because they're easier to source than beef. The others decide that they've had enough - except for Three, who helps himself to the leftovers.
  • I Call It "Vera": Three likes to name his guns. His sidearms are called Lulu and Pip, while his BFG is called Bubba (named after showrunner Joseph Mallozzi's dogs). He doesn't name his knife, though; that would be psycho. His new sniper rifle in the seventh episode is named Raquel.
  • I Know You Know I Know: "One More Card to Play" has the crew and their alternate selves plotting against each other to see who thought more moves ahead. The crew wins, on account of Five being a wild card the others hadn't accounted for.
  • I Lied: A heroic... well, Pragmatic Hero example. In "Episode Eleven", Two threatens to space the merc leader Wexler if he doesn't give her the altered code to the vault, promising that she'll free him if he complies because she's a better person than he is. She spaces him anyway, just as he had done to her.
    Wexler: This isn't you!
    Two: After today, I don't know what I am.
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: When the warden of the Hyperion 8 realizes that the Raza crew have escaped, the first thing he does is take a sip from the drink in his hand.
  • I Surrender, Suckers: Four pulls one of these in "Episode Nine" when he disarms himself when surrounded, only to attack when the guards move in to restrain him.
  • I Want My Jetpack: In "Isn't That a Paradox?", Three complains about the lack of any aero-cars, hyperloops or mag lev boots on 21st century Earth. Two points out that he never had access to such things in the first place, since they live on an outlaw starship and rarely frequent developed planets. He insists that he would at least like the option. Of course, he's really being contrary because he's not happy with Digital Sarah's I Just Want My Beloved to Be Happy suggestion that he settle down there.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: During the first season, the episodes had no proper names but only numbers... just like the main characters. By the start of Season 2 everybody's given names are known and their personalities have been established, and the episodes also start getting actual names which are based on a specific phrase that a main or supporting character said in that particular episode, each chosen via a four-option fan poll on showrunner Joseph Mallozzi's blog before the season started airing, as he struggles with titles.
  • Idiot Ball: The General is described as always using Transfer Transit clones to move around the galaxy while his real self stays hidden and away from the action. Except in episode 3x03, when he conveniently appears in person, allowing Six to blow his brains out, and his body is neither seen nor heard dissolving like Transfer Transit clones do.
    • Season Four would have revealed this was in fact yet another clone, but one that doesn't dissolve, created using technology not known to the public.
  • Immortality Inducer: Traugott Corp tried to create one from extremely long-lived trees. Instead they created a virus which creates zombies. Two seems to get the intended effect when one of the zombies bites her, but this is later revealed to be a Red Herring: she's actually an Artificial Human with nanites that heal her wounds.
  • Improbable Weapon User: In "Wish I'd Spaced You When I Had the Chance", Five has been kidnapped by human traffickers and, through unknown circumstances, is trying to hold off her kidnappers with a spoon. One of them gets cocky and boasts that she couldn't possibly harm them with it. She stabs the thin end into his ear then gives him a beating before the others restrain her. They're impressed by her resourcefulness, though the one who got stabbed and beaten holds a grudge.
  • In Medias Res:
    • "Episode Six" begins with a short action sequence in what appears to be a flashback to Four's past. Then the killer pulls down their hood and reveals it's Five. The episode later shows how this happened exactly: it was Five reliving Four's memories.
    • The technique is later used in several other episodes. We see a scene from the middle of the story absent any context; this leads to the first few minutes of the episode after the main title being a flashback to some hours prior to that first scene. The story then unites with the intro usually no later than the halfway point. Sometimes the viewer can fill in most of the blanks (2.5 "We Voted Not to Space You" teases with a scene of the Android sporting a human personality and style, an episode after this possibility was openly introduced). Sometimes not (2.3 "I've Seen the Other Side of You" teases Five running from Three and Four for unknown reasons; when Four catches her, he does not seem to know who she is, also for unknown reasons).
  • Inappropriate Hunger:
    • Five cheerfully mentions she's hungry after telling Two a rather horrifying dream that she had about Ryo's past, where he carved out the eyes of the still-living assassins his stepmother sent after him and left them for her to find. "The bitch."
    • In a flashback in "Built, Not Born", Boone doesn't stop eating while Portia fights Jasper and Shrike right in front of him, including when they're literally on the table.
  • Infodump: Five gives one in "Episode Eight" about Transfer Transit. Justified, since when the others ask how she knows all this, she turns out to be reading it off the brochure.
  • Informed Flaw: Both the cast/creators and the other characters repeatedly say that One's no good at fighting, but whenever he's actually portrayed in a firefight he's just as competent with a gun as the rest, and gets the drop on Three in both "Episode Three" and "Episode Thirteen". While he loses his hand-to-hand fight with Two in the first scene of the series, it's Two, so practically anyone would, and the fact he's able to get some countermoves in is more than the average person could do. So this does not serve as the hint he's out of place on a crew of mercenaries that it was meant to.
  • Inhumanable Alien Rights: Artificial humans have no rights by Galactic Authority law, so they can be freely tortured.
  • Insecurity System: The prison guards of Hyperion-8 enter the blocks armed and carrying their key cards. Two thus easily knocks out and disarms one to get them. That's why real prison guards aren't allowed to do this.
  • Instantly Proven Wrong: "Episode Twelve":
    Three: We're not nearly as screwed as we thought we were.
    The Android: I'm receiving a coded subspace transmission. It's from Calchek.
    Two: Patch him through. What do you want?
    Calchek: Oh, you, you are all so screwed!
  • Intangibility: Ash, the mercenary sent by Ryo Ishida in "All the Time in the World", has an implant which allows him to phase through solid matter. He ends up suffering a Tele-Frag when Two stuns him as he's trying to escape through a bulkhead, since he can't control the effect while unconscious.
  • Internal Reveal:
    • In Season 2, as a result of their brief incarceration by the Galactic Authority, the entire galaxy knows about the crew's memory wipe.
    • In "We Were Family", the rest of the crew finds out about the key that Five stole, which got all her friends killed and is being hunted by powerful Mega Corps, information that the audience has had for quite some time.
  • It's Quiet… Too Quiet: Lampshaded by Three in "Welcome to the Revolution" when the crew arrives at a suspiciously deserted colony.
    Three: Can we just skip ahead to the part where you come out of hiding and get the jump on us?
    Heavily armed locals appear
    Three: There, that's better.
  • It Works Better with Bullets: Five doesn't trust Three at the outset (because he doesn't trust her), so she snuck into his room in the third episode through the vents and took all the bullets out of his handguns. The audience can even tell the exact moment when he realizes that he should've noticed the weight difference.
  • I Will Only Slow You Down: In one episode, Three is injured, and he and Five are being pursued by bad guys and are trying to get back to their friends. He tells Five to leave him behind, which she refuses to do. He starts to tell her that she's being a fool and he never really liked her, but she sees through this Zero-Approval Gambit pretty easily. He then tells her that he's really not trying to sacrifice himself for her; he's slowing them down, but he believes that if she goes on without him she can get to their friends and get help back to him before he's caught.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: An artificial human is fitted with a neural stimulation device by a Mikkei soldier to get information from him. It acts by causing him to feel the pain of, say, having his finger cut off, with no actual damage, so his nanites won't be triggered.
  • Jerkass: Three is rude and obnoxious to everyone on the ship. His personality hasn't changed much from when he had his memories, though he was more of an asshole then than he is now. When he caught Five as a stowaway, he actually tried to throw her out an airlock, claiming when Six interrupted him that he was just trying to scare her. And he was even more impulsive and trigger-happy than he is now.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: In "Episode Seven", it turns out that Three had a stasis container with his terminally ill lover in the Vault, in order to keep her alive until a cure is found. Sadly, she dies at the end of the episode, but Three has become a much kinder person for having known her, as he refuses to let One blame himself for indirectly causing her death.
  • Just a Machine: Three says this regarding androids, but is called out by Sarah (who exists only as a sentient digital avatar at this point), and later apologizes to the Android over it.
  • Kangaroo Court: Ryo's trial in "Sometimes In Life You Don't Get to Choose" occurs before one of these. He isn't given counsel or allowed to examine any of the evidence against him. The outcome is naturally not in doubt, though he doesn't help things by an attempt to kill his stepmother (who is both his accuser and one of the judges).
  • Kinetic Weapons Are Just Better: Zigzagged: In gunfights, energy weapons appear to be slow, clunky and prone to fast charge depletion, so in "Episode Two", apart from Bubba, which Three soon has to throw away after it is depleted, everyone else just uses kinetic guns. In space, however, both lasers and conventional rockets are used, as are energy shields. Then in season 2 it zigs back again when it's shown that Bubba's fast depletion problem was the result of a defective battery, not a design problem.
  • Klingon Promotion: Portia Lin gained control of the Raza by killing Shrike, the previous captain, after they clashed over letting the Android establish a neural link.
  • Knight Templar: Chief Inspector Shaddick of the Galactic Authority’s Serious Crimes Division will let nothing get in the way of her making a case against Traugott Corp for the destruction of Iriden 3, going so far as putting a gun to Five's head to get access to the Android's memories.
  • La Résistance: "Episode Six" shows that there's a resistance movement against the corporate-controlled Galactic Authority. Six used to be a member, but killed his comrades after their leader tricked them into blowing up a space station with over 10,000 civilians.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: The crew don't remember who they are, but have their language ability, personalities and skill sets otherwise intact. One lampshades this, stating that if their minds had been completely wiped then they wouldn't understand the concepts of stasis, space, or even any language. Truth in Television, as the brain stores and recalls biographical memory (recollections of past events) separately from procedural memory (learned skills) and it is entirely possible in amnesia cases to lose access to one but not the other.
    • Played with in "It Doesn't Have to Be Like This" when Five's overuse of the memory-probing device prompts the Android to selectively erase some of her memories in order to preserve her brain's capacity for long-term memory.
  • Leave No Survivors: The standard MO of the Raza. They are so good at leaving no witnesses, that the name "Raza" has become associated with rumors of scary aliens and other such phenomena.
  • Little Stowaway: How Five and the dead boy the crew whose body found in "Episode Three" wound up on the Raza. They were homeless pickpockets living with a group of other kids on a space station when Five lifted a valuable key (later revealed to be the Blink Drive key) from a criminal. He wiped out their friends looking for it and critically injured the boy, T.J.. They stowed away on the Raza to escape and steal medicine, but Five was caught by the pre-mindwipe crew and her friend bled out in the cargo hold.
  • Living Lie Detector: The Android has this ability, but needs to be in close proximity to the person (so that it's not too convenient).
  • Logical Weakness:
    • Two's dependence on her healing nanites to maintain her bodily organs prevents her from using Transfer Transit tech, since only organic components are copied, so her clone wouldn't have nanites and would collapse.
    • Since Two's nanites keep her in perfect health, they also prevent her from becoming intoxicated (if you consider not being able to get drunk a weakness).
  • Loss of Identity: The crew agree that they are not defined by their past actions, as they don't remember any of them. They decide to instead use their skills and equipment for what feels right to them as they are now without those memories, declining to even use their original names except when necessary.
  • Lost Common Knowledge:
    • When Wendy starts speaking, the crew wonder about her accent. One of them looks at the pad and says her accent is set to "something called 'Aussie'."
    • Two and Nyx seem to be unaware of the fact that Earth is now better known as Terra Prime.
  • The Lost Lenore: The writers appear to be fond of this trope, since One, Two and Three all turn out to have them. One's wife was murdered and Two and Three both have Delicate and Sickly girlfriends who were put in stasis.
  • Lotus-Eater Machine:
    • When they are trying to explore the memories buried in Five's subconscious, Five becomes stuck inside and the rest of the crew are unable to revive her. When he follows her in, Six discovers that she is choosing to stay inside a good memory rather than come back to reality. Luckily Six is able to bring her out of it.
    • In Season 3, this is used to to talk with Sarah, Marcus Boone's former lover, whose mental pattern Five secretly copied from her damaged stasis pod in Season 1 and uploaded into the ship's computer.
    • Ferrous Corp uses one of these to try to get the location of the headquarters of the Independent Colonies out of Six's head.
  • Made a Slave: Discussed casually when Two, Three and Four revert to their former personalities in "I've Seen the Other Side of You" due to a glitch in the ship's neural link shortly after the crew's escape from the Hyperion-8 mega-prison. Marcus (Three) proposes selling Five and the other "intruders" (fellow Hyperion-8 escapees Arax, Nyx and Devon) into slavery to a black market mining operation. In "Wish I'd Spaced You When I Had the Chance" one of her abductors also proposes doing this to Five, as she had stabbed him during her escape attempt.
  • Magical Defibrillator: The Android uses an electrical shock from her hand to restart Six's heart after it's stopped by a bigger shock.
  • The Magnificent Seven Samurai: The second episode features the main characters (of whom there are seven, counting the Android) defending a mining settlement against corporate goons. Showrunner Joseph Mallozzi has outright listed The Seven Samurai among the series's influences, as you can see below.
  • Make It Look Like an Accident: Ferrous Corp tries this with the mining colony in "Episode Two", intending to make it look as if a fusion reactor malfunction wiped out the colony. They get foiled by the crew.
  • Make Way for the New Villains: Ferrous Corp is the overarching villain for Season 3. Come the finale, the aliens manipulate events so Ferrous has their secret shipyard destroyed in a Blink Drive overload, taking out their advantage while allowing the alien fleet a means to cross over from their universe.
  • Master of the Mixed Message: Two, who alternates between flirting with One and then acting callous towards him.
  • MegaCorp: The multi-corps are interstellar corporations with massive influence and resources, who don't hesitate to wipe out entire independent colonies if they feel like it.
  • Mental Space Travel: Transit Tech grows a clone with a three-day lifespan at your "destination" while you stay in stasis. When the clone reports back for "recycling", its memories are transmitted back to the original.
  • Mercy Kill: Four offers this to Two when she's infected with an incurable virus which will turn her into a Technically-Living Zombie. She refuses, preferring to wait it out, and turns out to be fine.
  • Mexican Standoff: In the Season 1 finale, One, Two, Three and Five get into one with each other due to One and Three suspecting each other of being The Mole and Five suspecting Two of being The Mole (thinking, mistakenly, that Two was subjected to Mind Control when Dwarf Star captured her), until Six, the real Mole, locks them in and gasses them before turning them all over to the GA.
  • The Mirror Shows Your True Self: Inverted in "Episode Six". When she is traversing the crew's memories in her dreams, Five looks into a mirror to determine who she is meant to be in the dream, seeing their face instead of her own.
  • Missing Mom: Four was framed by his stepmother for the murder of his father. No mention is made of his mother, though. Showrunner Joseph Mallozzi revealed on the Dark Matter subreddit that Empress #2 had something to do with Four's mother's death as well.
  • Mistaken for Gay: In "Episode Eight", One and Four have to follow Six through the Transit Tech service. The technician asks if they're a couple, to which One says no. Four asks if there's a discount then rolls with it when she says there is.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: In Season Three, after being used as bait to trap the good Raza crew of the primary universe and abandoned by the rest of his shipmates, the Alternate Universe Wexler becomes an agent of the Mikkei Combine. If Season Four had gone ahead, he would have joined the primary universe crew as the Token Evil Teammate; this can be seen in the Virtual Season Four episodes posted by showrunner Joseph Mallozzi on his blog.
  • The Mole:
    • Turns out that Six betrayed the team to the Galactic Authority, and his original self was an undercover cop named Lt. Kal Varrick all along, not a smuggler named Griffin Jones. "Griff"'s time in the General's anti-corporate terrorist movement pre-series was also as a Mole, along with his fellow undercover cop Anders.
    • Arax Nero is working for the people who are after Five, which is why he facilitated the crew's escape from Hyperion-8.
  • Morality Kitchen Sink:
    • One is the most vocal about them acting a moral course and virulently opposes returning to the criminal ways of their old lives.
    • Two, The Leader of the team, is just as committed to changing her life as One is, but tempers it with pragmatism and the need to survive their immediate situations. Starting with the premiere, she tends to split the difference between whatever the more and less moral options are, or Take a Third Option.
    • Three has no desire to change from being a mercenary-for-hire, and frequently proposes the most violent solutions to their problems and most selfishly profitable goals.
    • Four has the strongest sense of personal honor, but externally sides with Three, pointing out to the others that if it is ever in his interest (and honorable) to do so, he would simply take the ship for himself (foreshadowing his theft of the Blink Drive in the Season 2 finale).
    • Five is the most well-meaning and naive of the crew, unaccustomed to violence and hoping for a friendly solution to any problem.
    • Six is the most conflicted of the crew, unsure of how to reconcile his moral thoughts and desires with his apparent history of terrorism and current status as an outlaw.
  • Mugging the Monster: In "We Voted Not to Space You", some thugs try to beat up the Android while she's undercover. They probably regretted the attempt once they woke up.
  • Murder the Hypotenuse: Misaki goes out of her way to kill Nyx, despite being ordered not to, out of jealousy because Ryo wants to marry Nyx.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: When Six found out that he was unwittingly responsible for the death of 10,000 innocent people on Hyadum-12, it hit him so bad that he actually vomited his guts out right then and there.
    • Season 1 ends with the Wham Shot of Six fulfilling his original mission as an undercover cop and handing the others over after sabotaging the Raza. At the start of Season 2, discovering that the Galactic Authority knew in advance about the terrorist attack on Hyadum-12 and wanted it to happen, that his fellow officers have no intention of letting Five escape the system of "young offenders grow up to be adult offenders so we may as well treat them like it", and that One has been whacked makes Six realize that the GA is deeply corrupt and he needs to help the rest of the crew escape prison before they share One's fate.
  • My Sensors Indicate You Want to Tap That: Wendy inadvertently helps Two understand how she really feels towards One.
  • Mysterious Waif: Five is the member of the crew with the oddest behavior and by the end of the pilot episode she's the only one of the crew whose true name and record, if any, remain unknown. It's not even clear what her relationship to the rest of the crew was before becoming Everyone's Baby Sister post-mindwipe (especially since One and Three both have "kidnapping" on their records). It's eventually revealed she was a stowaway nicknamed Das, whom the crew allowed to stay on after catching her, due to her tech skills making her a potential asset, though her given name and how she came to possess the memories of the crew are still a mystery in Season One. In Season Two, we learn her name was Emily Kolburn, and she's 16. Season 3 later reveals she has a long-lost sister who was adopted by a wealthy family. It still hasn't been explained why she received all the crew's memories, though.
  • Name Amnesia: The six original human Raza crew members have amnesia and have adopted numbers One through Six as their names, based on the order they woke up in. Most of them (except Five, the only one of the six who's not a wanted criminal) learn their given names from Galactic Authority wanted files at the end of the first episode, but they continue using the numbers instead, given the unpleasant nature of that revelation. Also, it turns out One is not actually Jace Corso; he doesn't learn his real given name until later in the season.
  • Named by the Adaptation: In the graphic novel, the crewmates don't actually start going by the names One through Six (at least, not on-panel) and are only referred to by those numbers in background notes. In the TV series, they explicitly rename themselves that aloud.
  • The Nicknamer: Three keeps referring to his shipmates by snarky nicknames in the first two episodes. Partially justified by the fact that nobody knows their given names at first. These are listed on the Syfy website during Season One as their official nicknames - One is "Pretty Boy", Two is "Boss Lady", Four is "Slashy McStabberson", Five is "Kid" and Six is "Tiny". Three's own website nickname, "Sunshine", however, isn't actually used on the show. These names were also in the casting sides posted on showrunner Joseph Mallozzi's blog while the show was rolling out, except One's was "The Hero".
  • Nintendo Hard: The video game played by Five and the boy in the time travel episode "Isn't That a Paradox", and later taken back by Five into the future, is apparently this. Despite the game shown being a mainstream console action RPG from the mid-2010s, which are generally designed to be impossible to lose even by casual gamers. (And the levels in this genre, if there are any at all, are changes in setting, not difficulty. Or if character levels are meant, that's just a matter of time and grinding - there are no shortcuts, no matter how skilled a player is.) The dialogue makes it quite obvious the writer hasn't played video games since their own childhood in the 1980s.
    Jake Connor: "You're on level 8! I've had this game since Christmas and I only got as far as 5!"
  • No Body Left Behind: When an Expendable Clone dies, the body disintegrates into a pile of dust.
  • "No. Just… No" Reaction: This is word-for-word how One reacts in "Episode Seven" to the Android trying out a bunch of new accents.
    • When Two walks in on Three and the Android singing "Dominique" while Three plays the spoons wearing a woolen cap during an iteration of the "Groundhog Day" Loop in "All the Time in the World", she silently just nopes out of the room.
  • No Name Given: The Android "possess[es] no personal designation" and isn't given one (after all, the human crew don't use names either). In Season Three, it turns out that she used to be called Suki.
    • While Two learns in the penultimate episode of Season Three that she has a daughter out there somewhere, the girl's name isn't mentioned. In the final Dark Matter Monday rewatch podcast session on Youtube, showrunner Joseph Mallozzi decided that her name was Katie, after a fan who'd been part of all the podcasts and watching the show for the first time.
  • No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: The Blink Drive is a peculiar case. The reason why the bad guys are so desperate to get back the key that Five stole instead of simply making another is that they didn't develop the technology, they just stole the prototype, so they can't recreate it. And the last member of the team that created the Drive used a second copy to escape to the 21st century.
  • No Warping Zone: The Eos-7 station is surrounded by a massive sphere of satellites that force ships out of FTL if they cross the boundary, leaving them at a distance of seven light-minutes from the station.
  • Noble Fugitive: Four, aka Ryo Ishida, was the crown prince of the Principality of Zairon, but now he is wanted for the assassination of his father, the Emperor. Which was actually done by his stepmother to put his half-brother on the throne.
  • Non-Indicative Name: The show is called "Dark Matter", but has nothing to do with the phlebotinum that scientists are currently trying to nail down in real life. It's a play on "gray matter" (a nickname for the human brain) going "dark" (losing memories) and the fact that it's a very cynical and dark "matter" (i.e. situation) the crew is in.
  • Notice This: After the introduction of disposable clones that dissolve when killed, whenever a major character dies the camera lingers on their dead body whether they're a clone or the real deal, just so the audience doesn't find a cutaway conspicuous.
    • This is subverted in Season 3, when the General's body isn't shown after he's shot... But he has a large and conspicuous scar on his face that serves the same purpose.
  • Nuke 'em:
    • In "Episode Ten", a Ferrous Corp warship fires a nuke at the Raza. It would have vaporized the ship, but Two had them close the distance so the warship would be in range of the blast and thus disarm the warhead to protect themselves.
    • In the Alternate Universe, the alternate Raza nukes a colony that doesn't acquiesce to their demands.
  • Oblivious to Love: Four has this problem with Misaki. It leads to Nyx's death.
  • Off with His Head!: This is Four's favorite move with his katana.
  • An Offer You Can't Refuse:
    • In "Episode 5", the crew is contacted by their handler, who insists they do another job after botching the contract on the miners. As they can't afford to alienate a potential ally, they take the job. It goes sour and they end up ditching the guy, anyway.
    • In "Episode 10", the Mikkei Combine forces the crew into a job in exchange for their continued protection. Two is reluctant to take it given the previous incident, but One gets her to play along.
    • In "Kill Them All", Shaddick orders Five to have the Android reveal everything she knows, or she'll be shot. However, Five instead orders the Android to kill her and every other GA officer there.
    • In "Wish I'd Spaced You When I Had The Chance", Kierken tries to convince Three to tell him the truth about Iriden-3 in exchange for a clean slate for Five. Three lies that he was the only one involved.
    • In "Sometimes in Life You Don't Get to Choose", Ryo asks the Zairon warships' officers to swear fealty. The one who refuses is immediately killed, and the others are threatened with the same if they also refuse.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Said word for word by One in "Episode Eight" when he's in Transfer Transit clone form and sees in the mirror that his clone has a different face from his usual, thus exposing the fact that he impersonated Jace Corso to the rest of the crew.
    • "Episode Nine" ends with three Ferrous Corp destroyers surrounding the Raza.
    • "Episode Ten" ends with Two getting Thrown Out the Airlock.
    • "We Should Have Seen This Coming" has Hansmeed thinking he has Milo right where he wants him — then suddenly and wordlessly realizing that Milo still has a choice left.
    • "Sometimes In Life You Don't Get to Choose" has an even bigger one coming for Hansmeed... just before he's killed along with all the Seers and the Empress on Four's orders.
    • "But First, We Save The Galaxy" has Kierken see the station's reactor overload, with him standing right beside it. He gets a few precious seconds to let it sink in that he really should have listened to the Raza's crew's warning.
    • In "Isn't that a Paradox?", Professor Brophy is introduced to "Elaine" and "Mitch". He has the appropriate shocked and terrified reaction when he recognizes Portia Lin and Marcus Boone. He's also from the future and knows exactly who they really are. A double dose, since he realizes this means someone else from the future has time travel capabilities.
    • Everyone's reaction when the Black Ships appear in the Season 3 finale.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Melanie Liburd puts on a good American/Canadian/whatever that is in the future accent, but her native English accent slips through occasionally.
  • Open Secret: The whole point of the multi-corps employing the Raza is plausible deniability, but even a bunch of miners in the ass-end of the galaxy know that "the Raza" are the deniable enforcers of the Corps.
  • Orbital Bombardment: In "Sometimes in Life You Don't Get to Choose", the Android threatens to do this to the capital of Zairon when the crew is captured, unless they're released. When it is pointed out that this would kill the crew and violate her imperative to protect them, she explains that she's been given orders to ignore that imperative and fires a few times to make it clear. The Empress tries to have one of them executed to call her bluff, but other forces intervene before that gets tested.
  • Perpetual Poverty:
    • In season 1 the crew has had money issues practically since the moment they came out of stasis. And all their attempts to remedy the situation only leave them worse off... at least until "Episode Seven", when the ship's vault reveals a stash of credits, guns, and other profitable goods.
    • In season 2 they go right back into poverty since all the stuff in their vault got impounded when the ship got taken by the Galactic Authority. They subsist on Five's secret emergency stash of cash.
  • Pet the Dog: In "Wish I'd Spaced You When I Had The Chance", Three tells Kierken the truth about the white hole bomb under duress, but a rescue by the crew allows him to destroy the recording Kierken made. Three could also kill Kierken, since he's an Expendable Clone in this instance, but decides to allow him to keep his memories since he would prefer knowing even if he has no proof.
  • Phlebotinum Rebel: Both Two, who is an Artificial Human made by Dwarf Star Technologies as a prototype host for the alien invaders whose nanites give her an enhanced Healing Factor, and Nyx, a survivor of an experiment by Electus Corp whose subjects developed precognitive abilities, who is on the run from her fellow survivors after they took over the experiment themselves and became a cult-like group called the Seers bent on galactic domination.
  • Planet Terra: By the time the series is set, Earth is better known as Terra Prime. Dwarf Star Technologies maintains the Crystal Tower facility there, and Derrick Moss's bio says he was born in Cape Town, South Africa, but other than that there's little information on the planet's condition.
  • Planetville: The ship's destination in the pilot, an independent mining colony. The only settlement on the planet is a small town.
  • Plausible Deniability: This is the point of the Raza. If the corporations went in and murdered entire colonies, that would look bad, but the Raza are ghosts, so anything they do can just be billed as bad luck and the corporations move in unimpeded.
  • Poke the Poodle: When the Android tries to get herself arrested as part of a scheme to hack the GA files for information on who killed One, her "crimes" involve opening a secured door (but not going through it), threatening to open the same door again, and tossing a guard's hat. She finally gets taken in when she rips the guard's uniform.
    The Android: Oh my God, what does a girl have to do to get arrested around here?
  • Precision F-Strike: Dropped by Five of all people when she realizes that the malfunctioning Blink Drive threw them back in time in "Isn't That a Paradox?".
  • Psycho for Hire: Pre-mindwipe, the crew of the Raza were notorious for a Leave No Survivors approach to the jobs the corporations hired them for.
    • Ryo hires an entire ensemble of these to get rid of the Raza in Season 3. Needless to say, they ultimately fail.
  • Puppeteer Parasite: Three is infected with one of these in Season 2 episode "Going Out Fighting". It exists as a gaseous entity which can take over human hosts. "The Dwarf Star Conspiracy" reveals that it is from a race of interdimensional Starfish Aliens running the company from behind the scenes.
  • Quest for Identity: Pretty much the basis for the entire show. The crew awakens on a ship in space with no memories of their lives or identities, though they retain their skills. They have to work from there.
  • The Quiet One: Four barely says a word to the other characters at first. At multiple points the other characters comment on how little he speaks; Three says his silence makes what he does say all the smarter, and One talks about how you sometimes forget he is even there. Which makes their ears perk up all the more whenever he does decide to say something.
  • Red Herring:
    • The pilot episode has a couple of major ones for the true identity of the crew. They find their cargo hold to be full of weapons and One discovers a sun pendant which is identical to the one Mireille on the mining colony wears. She tells him it symbolizes freedom and that people sent by a man called Hrothgar, who are supposed to be coming with weapons to help the colony defend themselves from the Raza, will have one to identify themselves with. One reaches the conclusion that the crew are the people who are supposed to save the colony. Unfortunately, the files recovered at the end of the episode show that it's just the opposite: their ship is the Raza, they're notorious criminals hired to wipe the colony out, and they have the weapons cache and the pendant because they hijacked and killed Hrothgar's crew. Which means there's no one else coming to help the colony when Ferrous inevitably get fed up with the Raza taking too long to kill them and send in the troops.
    • A minor one since the crew never really have a discussion about it, but the fact that One and Three both have "Kidnapping" on their records suggests one possible explanation for Five's presence on the ship could be that they kidnapped her, with some fans even speculating that it would turn out she was in a bad situation that One and Three took her away from for good reasons. "Episode Six" shows that she was a Little Stowaway instead. The first episode of Season 2 has G.A. Inspector Shaddick say that she considered and dismissed the possiblity that Five was a kidnapping victim, since as a homeless orphan there's no one who would pay a ransom for her.
    • When the crew find the dead body of a boy Five's age with a gunshot wound in a cargo hold who feels familiar to her, they assume that one of the adult crew themselves probably murdered him before the mindwipe. As it turns out, he was shot by a different ruthless criminal on the space station where he, Five and several others lived as homeless pickpockets. The two of them snuck onboard the Raza in cargo crates to find medicine for him, but Five was caught by the crew and TJ bled out while they were deciding what to do with her. So the crew did have a role in his death, but less directly.
    • The advertisement Six sees for expendable clones seems to set up the reason why there are two Jace Corsos running around, which even had viewers speculating at the time that the crew could all be clones of the real criminals, or the other way around. It is soon after seemingly debunked when Evil Jace informs One that the latter couldn't be a clone due to Clone Degeneration setting in after three or four days (at least with the tech publicly known to exist), so there supposedly must be some other explanation for why they're identical - apart from Jace still having his memories and wearing a more sinister-looking ensemble. Even then, viewers continued to speculate that Jace was mistaken and One really was a longer-lasting clone, with Two's immunity to the zombie plague in "Episode Five" possibly being further evidence of the crew all being enhanced duplicates, or even that Jace was the real clone and that was why he didn't remember being scanned, until "Episode Eight" proved otherwise.
    • After Two survives a bite from a zombie in "Episode Five" without changing, something the records say has never happened before, and her wound disappears entirely, it seems plausible that she has now become immortal, which was the original intended purpose of the serum that created the zombie plague. "Episode Eleven" shows that Two was actually purged of the virus by her own internal nanites, and is an Artificial Human.
    • After getting lost in her own mind while trying to help out the crew by using a mind probe on herself to explore their old memories (which were all downloaded into her subconscious when the wipe happened), Five retreats from reality by spending her time in the happy memories of a boy nicknamed Titch who lives on a farm with his two loving parents. Titch is a Caucasian boy, so he has to be either One or Three, and Five assumes he's One because One seems more well-adjusted than Three (even though she notes Titch doesn't look that much like One in the mirror, which could be interpreted as a reference to One's change of appearance). Six (who has delved in to save her) points out that regardless of who the boy is, there must be something awful coming after these memories that made him into someone who'd be a crewmember of the Raza. In Season Two, it turns out Titch was Three all along. His parents were murdered by a drifter they took in, who then raised him as a criminal like himself.
    • One having lied his way onto the ship using someone else's identity makes him top of the suspicion list to be The Mole, especially in Three's opinion. Turns out in "Episode 13" that The Mole is Six, whom no one suspected. One isn't the only one who was using an alias. Likewise, after Two is rescued from Dwarf Star at the end of "Episode 12", she has some moments filmed in a way to make her seem suspicious, and in "Episode 13" Five begins to think that Dwarf Star did something to Two and that she is the saboteur. Who, as mentioned before, is actually Six, and Two is still her usual self after all.
  • Reduced to Ratburgers: "Episode Eight" has the crew dining at a space station, trying to identify what's in their food. Two finally reveals that it's mealworm meat, as it's easier to source than livestock. One and Four are instantly turned off; Three just shrugs and continues eating.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Played with, since everybody starts out with amnesia and nobody remembers anybody or knows how long they've been together. It turns out that Jace Corso was not originally a member of the Raza's crew, he was recruited to join them for the mining colony extermination job due to being a capable and ruthless mercenary like they were. And One is not the real Jace Corso, he's a physically identical imposter who infiltrated the ship in Corso's place.
  • The Reveal: They come up fairly often. Word of God states that only two episodes in Season 1 (Episodes 2 and 4) come without them.
    • "Episode One" ends with the revelation that the protagonists are the crew of the Raza, wanted criminals.
    • The end of "Episode Three" shows that someone else who looks exactly like One - aside from having an eviler aesthetic - is the real Jace Corso (One's supposed identity). Both One and Evil Jace are played by Marc Bendavid.
    • "Episode Four" ends with the revelation that Four is really the crown prince of the Principality of Zairon and is wanted for the murder of his father, the Emperor.
    • "Episode Six" reveals snippets of several crew members' pasts. Six used to be a member of a revolutionary movement but left (and killed several of his fellows) when he was tricked into bombing a civilian space station. Five was a stowaway that Three nearly spaced. Four was framed by his stepmother Empress Katsumi, who wanted to install his half-brother as emperor and needed him out of the way.
    • "Episode Eight" shows us One's true physical appearance, played by Dan Jeannotte, when he gets cloned by Transfer Transit. He uses the genetic profile to uncover his true identity and motive for infiltrating the ship. He's a former corporate CEO named Derrick Moss whose wife was murdered. The prime suspect in her murder was Marcus Boone/Three.
    • "Episode Eleven" reveals that Two is an Artificial Human.
    • "Episode Twelve" reveals Two's creator, as well as the person behind him. Also, Five finds a recording that has Two and Four talking about killing someone on the crew once they have landed on the mining colony.
    • "Episode Thirteen" ends with everyone captured thanks to the actions of Six.
    • "She's One of Them Now" reveals the nature of the keycard Five stole. It's a piece of an experimental Blink Drive that can transport a ship anywhere in the galaxy instantly and fits to any standard FTL drive. In a setting where it can take weeks or months to reach a destination, this would make whatever side controlled it unbeatable. And now the crew of the Raza has the whole thing.
    • "Sometimes in Life You Don't Get to Choose" has a very subtle one: Five helped Portia make the modifications to the Android. This means that the time period between Boone discovering her on the ship and the memory wipe was longer than previously implied and as Das she was actually a member of the crew for a time pre-mindwipe.
    • "But First We Save the Galaxy" ends with Lt Anders, Six's former GA partner, coming to rescue Three. Six shot Anders in "Kill 'Em All", with no hints that he survived.
    • "Built, Not Born" ends with Dr Shaw and Victor recruiting Sarah, in her new android body, to join their android uprising that was foreshadowed earlier in the episode.
  • The Revolution Will Not Be Civilized: The rebellion against the Galactic Authority is willing to blow up a space station full of civilians just to make a statement. Six and his cohorts were pissed when they found out, as they thought the job was merely to steal one of the Authority's starships. Worse yet, in Season 2 it is revealed that the Galactic Authority allowed the rebels to blow up their station in order to drum up popular support against the rebellion. In Season 3, "the General", the man responsible for the space station attack, reappears and orders prisoners killed, justifying his actions before Six shoots him dead.
  • Ridiculous Future Sequelisation: Star Wars XXXVI is mentioned as a "classic" once.
  • Ridiculously Human Robots: In "We Were Family", the Android runs into a group of renegade androids that can convincingly pass themselves off as human. They would be reset if anyone caught them. "Built, Not Born" reveals that the upgrade was created by Two's caretaker Dr Shaw, who built the Android in her own likeness and sent her out to accompany Portia - also explaining the relationship between the two shown in "Stuff To Steal, People To Kill".
  • Right for the Wrong Reasons: The real Jace Corso concludes that One is not a clone because he's existed for months and Expendable Clones only last 72 hours or so, and to his knowledge he doesn't have a twin brother, therefore he must be identical to him because of Surgical Impersonation. While it later turns out that this is why they're identical, it was planned to be revealed in Season Four that CoreLactic had developed a way to make Transfer Transit clones that don't deteroriate - which would in fact have been used to reveal that One survived his assassination. Not to mention the existence of Alternate Universe doppelgangers established in Season Two (including another Corso!). So there are at least two ways in the series's setting One could have been a biological copy of him that Corso didn't know about, which in retrospect makes it seem like he only guessed right by accident and that if he had met Alt Corso he would have reached the same conclusion and been completely wrong.
    • Add to that that Corso saying he can't have been scanned for a clone without his noticing isn't very convincing because he could have been knocked out, asleep, drugged or made to forget with technology, especially since "Episode Eleven" established he's been known to get roaring drunk, and that's assuming there aren't more compact scanners that aren't publicly known to exist.
  • Rousseau Was Right: Even after learning at the end of the first episode that they were cutthroat mercenaries hired to wipe out the mining colony on the planet below, none of them find themselves naturally inclined to finish the job and kill innocent people. Three's the only one who raises the possibility of doing so, and only because he's afraid that disappointing Ferrous Corp might be suicidal, rather than any eagerness to commit murder.
  • Saying Too Much: One of the things which tips off Six to the fact that he's in a simulation in "Wish I Could Believe You" is Three knowing his wife's name, which he never told him.
  • Scifi Writers Have No Sense Of Scale: It takes this show an unusually long time to fall foul of this tropenote  in a particular egregious manner, but then the aliens in season 3 episode "The Dwarf Star Conspiracy" make it sound like the heat death of the universe is only little more than a billion years away. For comparison: Even the sun has still 3.5 billion years worth of fuel left before it'll go into a different phase of its existence that isn't so supportive of life in the solar system. And new stars are born all the time, including from old, exploded stars. It's estimated that it'll take about a hundred trillionnote  years until space expands too much to form new stars. Even if the aliens massively accelerate the entropy-accumulation / energy-diffusion in a universe somehow, "This universe is younger. We can feed off of it for over a billion years." still sounds just as ridiculous as Dr. Evil demanding a ransom of a million dollars in the first Austin Powers film.
  • Seers: The Seers, introduced in "We Should Have Seen This Coming". Using a combination of drugs and a Hive Mind, they are able to process massive amounts of data from everywhere in the galaxy to predict the future with a reasonable degree of certainty. Even when not connected, they are able to predict the future, though not nearly as accurately. Their leader intends to kidnap more people to expand the Hive Mind and improve their abilities, with the ultimate goal of forming a fleet to take over the galaxy.
  • Self-Destruct Mechanism: When the android Ruac gets severely damaged, one of these is activated to wipe his mind.
  • Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: During their trip to the Alternate Universe, the crew become aware that the bombing of a corporate summit at Eos-7 started an all-out war between the corporations. Realizing that this war helped Zairon win its own war against Pyr, Ryo enacts a plan to make sure that Eos-7 is destroyed during the summit in the main reality as well.
  • Sensible Heroes, Skimpy Villains: Not so much with the actual villains of the show (except Alicia Reynaud), but when contrasting our heroes with their evil counterparts. While ruthless murderers Portia (during flashbacks to the pre-mindwipe days on the Raza) and Alt Portia from the Alternate Universe, and newly-ethical Two, all generally wear tight black outfits, the Portias still manage to dress considerably more revealingly (very low-cut shirts, boob windows, bared midriffs), to the point where you can easily tell who's who during fake-outs by the amount of cleavage shown by the actress. Even the outfits of One / Corso try to encourage tropes like this by having Corso (and Alt Corso) wear guyliner and more black leather, while One dresses in a range of black, white and earth tones with an aesthetic that's more "space cowboy" while Corso's could be described as "vampire wannabe". The male version of this doesn't come with the same visual allusions to the Madonna-Whore Complex, though.invoked
  • Servile Snarker: The Android chooses the middle of an attack to reveal this aspect of herself. She continuously tries to manage the ship with her neural link, and each time Two stops her and has her show how the task can be done manually. When Two tells her to defend the ship during an attack, the Android remarks on her previous requests.
    [Another ship has launched missiles at the protagonists' ship.]
    Android: Time to impact... 50 seconds.
    Two: What can we do?
    Android: The ship is also equipped with various countermeasures I can initiate. [Smiles] Would you like me to show you?
  • Sex Bot: Wendy the entertainment android is programmed with a vast array of sexual techniques and even has interchangeable parts to accommodate those who prefer a male anatomy.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: The Android looks quite pretty in a dress. This is the crew's reaction later when she puts on normal clothes and lets her hair down to go undercover. The Android also enjoys it herself.
  • Shout-Out:
    • In the pilot, Six hands Five a jacket that looks very much like Kaylee's.
    • In "Episode Six", the General is said to have returned to Arrakis Sadr to coordinate the next campaign.
    • In "Episode Eight", Five invites Six to watch Star Wars XXXVI, which is supposed to be a classic.
    • In "Episode Nine", Three is shown reading Charlotte's Web (and crying) in his quarters after One gave it to him.
    • The crew being helped by kids on bikes when they time travel to the present day in the Season 3 episode "Isn't That a Paradox?" was a shout out to Stranger Things. And the lead boy's name being Jake Connor was a shout out to the character John Connor, of the Terminator series. Also, it turns out that while football is no longer popular in the 27th century, E-sports and Quidditch are as big as football once was.
    • There was a character played by Martin Cummins named Aden Corso in a Season 6 episode ("Forsaken") of one of Mallozzi and Mullie's previous shows, Stargate SG-1, who was the leader of a group of escaped convicts. When asked on Reddit if he and Jace Corso were related, Mallozzi said, "Probably."
    • The Feudal Japan in Space! aesthetic of Four's home, the Principality of Zairon, is the showrunners' way of incorporating their love of anime and anime tropes, including Code Geass and Gundam, into the series via Rule of Cool. The name is a shout-out to Gundam's Principality of Zeon.
    • The attempted coup that Two and Three face from Alt Jace Corso and Alt Tash on the Alternate Universe Raza while pretending to be their own evil Alt selves in "Stuff to Steal, People to Kill" was a shout out to the similar shenanigans facing Kirk, McCoy, Uhura and Scotty when they changed places with their Mirror Universe selves in the classic ''Star Trek'' episode "Mirror, Mirror". Both episodes even feature a planet the AU crew is supposed to exterminate.
    • The screams sometimes made by the extradimensional aliens when they're in human bodies is a shout out to the 1978 Invasion of the Body Snatchers movie.
    • Both Blake's 7 and Dark Matter have a Fantastic Drug called Shadow.
    • Five's pre-mindwipe nickname, Das, comes from the username of a long-time poster (all the way back to the Stargate days) on Joe Mallozzi's blog, Dasindanger. Likewise, the name of Two's long-lost daughter, Katie, also comes from a fan, Meteorologist Katie.
    • As noted above, Three's guns are named after Joe Mallozzi's dogs. And the dog Two coos over in "Isn't That a Paradox?" is actually her actress Melissa O'Neil's dog.
  • Small Girl, Big Gun: In "Kill Them All", Five gets her hands on Three's BFG and immediately puts it to good use.
  • Smoking Barrel Blowout: The Android does this after dual-wielding assault rifles to gun down a Ferrous Corp boarding party.
  • Space Clouds: Zairon has a research station hidden in a radioactive nebula that ships cannot stay in for prolonged periods.
  • Space Pirates: Several members of the Raza's crew are wanted for piracy charges by the Galactic Authority, but we haven't seen them engage in it yet.
  • Space Police: The Galactic Authority fulfills this role in colonized space. The Raza's crew is on their most wanted list.
  • Stable Time Loop:
    • In "Isn't That a Paradox?", the crew travels back in time and have to reveal their identities to a group of kids. When they get back to the future, they learn that the descendant of one of those kids invented the FTL drive, inspired by his tales of space travel.
    • In the same episode, a proximity alarm on the Marauder goes off, so Six goes to check it out and is arrested by the police, who have found the ship. In order to fix things, Five is able to jump back in time an hour using the Blink Drive, in the process triggering the alarm that will attract Six.
  • Standard Human Spaceship: All the ships in this setting tend towards this aesthetic in their design.
  • The Stoic: Four keeps his emotions under control at almost all times and his face rarely betrays any of them.
  • Strange Minds Think Alike: Six and One both try to convince the same Transfer Transit tech to bend the rules for them in order to "get back at the corporate big-wigs". The tech doesn't fall for it a second time, even finishing One's sentence for him when she realizes what he's trying to do.
  • Sudden Sequel Death Syndrome: One is apparently killed by Jace Corso in the Season 2 premiere, "Welcome to Your New Home". An interesting example as both are played by the same actor, so it's only the character being written out. Jace Corso gets killed by Two in revenge not long after, making it a straight example, although another version of him shows up in the Alternate Universe. According to Word of Joseph Mallozzi, One actually faked his death, however; since his killing off was forced by Executive Meddling and not part of their plan, the showrunners left themselves a back door to bring him back.
  • Summon Bigger Fish: How the crew defeats Ferrous Corp in the second episode; Two brings along two Mikkei Combine cruisers to face off the Ferrous Corp destroyer and then negotiate a more favorable deal with the miners.
  • Superhuman Transfusion: In "Going Out Fighting", in order to stay alive, Two needs to gain access to a new, improved version of her nanites developed by Dwarf Star Technologies. However, Rook was expecting the heist and has the nanites moved. Fortunately he left behind an Artificial Human infused with those nanites, so the crew is able to obtain a sample from that guy's bloodstream once they've killed him (in self-defense).
    • Two gives one to Dr Shaw in "Built, Not Born" to treat the latter's illness. It's mentioned that she did this before in the past and it only worked temporarily, but with the new, improved nanites Two hopes it might stick this time.
  • Surgical Impersonation: One is revealed to have taken the identity of a notorious career criminal by changing his face and voice with plastic surgery, as discovered when he's captured by that same criminal. This is because he's looking for the man who killed his wife, whom he suspects to be part of the ship's crew.
  • Sweet Tooth: A characteristic shared by Two, Five and the Android. All three of them share a fondness for hot chocolate. Five in particular is prone to a) sulking and b) overpossessiveness when it comes to her favorite treats. She's not someone who likes to share her daily dose of sugar high!
  • Tagalong Kid: Five, an innocent teenage girl who was somehow in the company of five dangerous criminal adults before all their memories were wiped. Three tells Commander Truffault of the Mikkei Combine that Five is their "mascot" in "Episode Ten".
  • Technically-Living Zombie: In "Episode Five", the crew runs into a virus which was produced as a botched attempt by a pharmaceutical company to create an immortality serum. Instead, those it infects are turned homicidal and feed on their victims. The outbreak was so bad the entire planet where the research was done was put into permanent quarantine.
  • Temporal Paradox: Discussed in "Isn't That a Paradox?", where the crew are keen to avoid creating one after traveling back in time since they have no idea what will happen. The Android suggests the crew might simply cease to exist. The time-travelling scientist who brought them there by mistake is worried that a paradox could create a temporal rift that would have the approximate effect of dropping a nuke on the town.
  • Tempting Fate: "Hot Chocolate" ends with the Android saying "I have a good feeling about this" during a test of the FTL engine. Cue an overload and a pulse which knocks her and the rest of the crew unconscious.
  • That Man Is Dead: The crew's reaction to finding out all that all of them except Five were ruthless mercenaries is to reject their past identities and even names and to make new lives utilizing their retained skills for good (or at least, to take on jobs that don't involve mass murder; it's hard to live completely straight when the authorities are hunting you). Two is the most vocal about it, saying not to even call her by her old name.
    • In the Season Two premiere, One's lawyer offers to have a plastic surgeon restore his original appearance, but he declines, saying this is the only face he remembers.
  • There Are No Coincidences: When a malfunction drops the ship out of FTL and just so happens to strand it in the middle of a supernova's gamma ray bombardment, the crew is certain it was sabotage. Turns out it really was a malfunction.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: In "Going Out Fighting", Four shoots an Artificial Human several times, including in the head, then drives his sword through the man's skull just to make sure his nanites can't revive him.
  • They Were Holding You Back: Misaki cites this as her reason for killing Nyx, since Ryo's attachment to his former crew is a liability he'll have to deal with eventually.
  • Three-Point Landing: Two does it after artificial gravity kicks back in after being strained by an evasive maneuver in the first episode. The rest of the crew wasn't nearly so graceful, but then they hadn't been warned about it.
  • Thrown Out the Airlock:
    • It happens to Two at Wexler's hands in "Episode Ten". She survives, and does it to Wexler in the next episode.
    • Pre-amnesia, after Marcus Boone (Three) discovered Five stowing away, he was about to do this to her. Griff (Six) stopped him, and Boone claimed he wasn't actually going to go through with it.
    • In "But First, We Save the Galaxy", this happens to an android by his own hand to get rid of a bomb that had been hidden in his body.
    • Later, AU Portia and AU Marcus eject every prisoner being held on a transport into space, as they're useless to them.
  • Time Travel: In "Isn't That a Paradox?", the crew travels back in time due to an unexpected glitch in the Blink Drive. They pal around suburbia for a little bit and accidentally inspire the invention of the FTL drive.
  • Title Drop: Every episode in Seasons 2 and 3 is named after a line in the episode, though void of context it often ends up being misleading. It's a reversal of the usual since the dialogue existed first: the titles were chosen by fans via polls on showrunner Joseph Mallozzi's blog before the seasons actually aired, with each episode's poll having four quotes to choose from. Mallozzi doesn't like coming up with titles.
  • Torture Always Works: Zigzagged. A mook being interrogated by Four warns that torture won't work, drawing on personal experience. Four shoots back that it's cathartic nonetheless, and he does get the intelligence he wanted.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: The end of "My Final Gift to You" has Two about to execute Ryo, which the next episode preview blatantly reveals she won't go through with.
  • Training the Peaceful Villagers: What One, Three, Four and Six are forced to do with the miner colonists when the ship jumps to FTL without them.
  • Trojan Horse: Cyrus King, an old enemy of the crew they no longer remember, arranged for them to get their hands on Wendy the entertainment android so she could take over the Raza and fly it into a star.
  • Twinmaker: Transfer Transit makes a clone with a three-day lifespan on another planet and at the end of that span the clone's memories are sent back to the original.
  • Two Girls to a Team: Played straight in the comic with Two and Five being the only female crew members. Averted in the series where the Android was gender flipped.
    • Inverted in the course of Season 2, which killed off two male crew members and gave another a Face–Heel Turn, while adding another woman, so that by the end it was just 2 guys and 4 girls. And then Season 3 temporarily had Six leave the crew, though it only lasted a few episodes. But generally, it's a more balanced 2 guys, 3 girls (or 3 guys, 4 girls) for most of Season 3.
  • Underage Casting: In-Universe, Two pretends she's Five's mother when the crew are stranded in the 21st century, though the characters look around a decade apart at most (Melissa O'Neil and Jodelle Ferland have only six years between them). Ironically, Two is actually chronologically younger than Five, having been created as an adult only a few years ago. Of the crew, only the Android is younger than Two.
  • Undercover Cop Reveal: The first season finale shows that Six was collaborating with the Galactic Authority in the final shot of the episode, flanked by Anders, one of the General's revolutionaries from "Episode Eight". Season Two reveals Six was a GA officer the entire time, undercover among the Raza crew, and both he and Anders were undercover when they were with the General's terrorist movement.
  • Unobtainium: The terrium that the settlers in the pilot episode mine to support their colony.
  • Upgrade vs. Prototype Fight: In "Going Out Fighting", Two is pitted against Dwarf Star's newest iteration of Artificial Human. She loses badly, but her friends show up and gun the guy down.
  • Uriah Gambit: Two figures that the salvage job in "Episode Five" was this. She presumes their handler was paid off by Ferrous Corp to take them out, and he intended for them to die on the ship since he never informed them of the plague it carried. On the off chance they succeeded, the data and/or samples would have been extremely valuable. He never anticipated that they'd survive and scuttle the ship, though, so now they have a reason to want him dead.
  • Used Future: The colony from the pilot looks basically like a twenty-first century warehouse/factory. Their fusion reactor is also forty years old, replacement parts are hard to get, and it is thus very vulnerable to the planned Ferrous Corp attack.
  • Vagueness Is Coming: At the end of "We Were Family", the head of Ferrous Corp warns that a war is coming, and that the crew of the Raza have something that can win it. It's not explained what will start this war.
  • Villain Team-Up:
    • In "Sometimes in Life You Don't Get to Choose", the Seers ally with the Empress in an attempt to get Nyx back and eliminate the crew of the Raza. Instead, both parties end up dead when they're outgambitted by the crew.
    • In Season Three, the AU crew teams up with Ferrous Corp and the Ishida.
  • Villainous Rescue: Of Three by Alt Portia in the Season Three finale, though only so she can use him to access Alt Boone's vault of loot and then discard him.
  • Villain's Dying Grace: When Ryo thinks he'll be executed, he tells Two that she has a daughter as a means of apologizing for all the trouble he caused.
  • Virtual-Reality Interrogation: Done to Six in "Wish I Could Believe You", where he's rescued by the rest of the Raza crew from a colony wiped out by a corporate bioweapon and they try to get him to tell the location of the upcoming meeting of representatives from planets declaring independence. Turns out he's actually been captured by corporate forces and plugged into a Lotus-Eater Machine.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: It looks like One and Three are headed here. They can't stand each other and don't trust each other but they almost always get paired off on missions by Two to keep each other honest, and haven't turned on each other yet. This despite Three knowing that One is not the real Jace Corso. He uses it to blackmail One but doesn't tell when his bluff is called. Ultimately, their differences cause them to turn on each other in the first season finale instead of bonding. However, they would have continued to develop this dynamic in Season 2 had One survived as in the original series plan rather than being killed off by Executive Meddling. In fact, the original plan states that it will "form the core of the show".invoked
  • Void Between the Worlds: In the Season 3 premiere, a botched attempt to use the Blink Drive on an entire station strands the crew and the station they're on in a pocket of null space which is slowly collapsing.
  • Wall of Weapons: Three has a modest one in his room (two rifles, a shotgun and a pistol case). Four has one full of bladed weapons.
  • Wardens Are Evil: The warden of the prison on Hyperion-8 is thoroughly corrupt and in the pockets of the corporations.
  • Wham Episode:
    • "Episode Ten": The ship is taken over and Two is airlocked.
    • "Episode Thirteen": Six betrays the team and One, Two, Three, Four, Five and the Android are all rendered unconscious and dragged away by the authorities.
    • "Sometimes in Life You Don't Get to Choose": Four takes back the throne of Zairon...and kills off everybody, including his stepmother and half-brother.
    • "But First, We Save the Galaxy": Four steals the Blink Drive and destroys the station hosting the corporate summit, Nyx may be dead by poison, and the fates of Two, Three, Five and Six are all up in the air since they were last seen on the station.
    • "The Dwarf Star Conspiracy": Starfish Aliens from another universe are extremely close to coming through to this galaxy, where they have already set up accomplices and have an ally in Dwarf Star Technologies that has secretly sent out simulants to infiltrate all the other corporations. They plan on coming through, infiltrating all sides, and then wiping out humanity, and almost no one knows they exist so it would be hard to fight back against their schemes. Anyone anywhere could actually be an alien in disguise fulfilling their goals.
  • Wham Shot:
    • The season one finale has the crew being dragged off by the GA one by one in numerical order, except Six, who orchestrated their capture for reasons unknown.
    • The second season premiere ends with One apparently being shot dead by Jace Corso.
    • The Season Three finale ends with a inter-dimensional portal opening up and a fleet of "the Black Ships" coming out of it.
  • "What Do They Fear?" Episode: "Take the Shot". Two, Three and Four are forced to face their greatest doubts and fears, with Three nearly committing Psychic-Assisted Suicide so that he and Sarah can be Together in Death.
  • Wicked Stepmother: Four has one that framed him for his own father's murder.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: In "I've Seen the Other Side of You", Two (currently reverted to Portia Lin thanks to some memory shenanigans) gains access to a direct neural link to the ship. She immediately describes it as a rush of power, but the Android warns that insanity and brain damage will soon follow if she doesn't terminate it.
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: In the Season 1 finale Six puts himself to sleep with a drug even though he's the one who has been knocking out the rest of the crew in order to make it easier for the GA to arrest them.
  • Wrench Wench: Five is extremely proficient in mechanics and enjoys working with wires, circuits and fuses. She is later revealed to be a decent programmer.
  • Xanatos Speed Chess: This is the result when the crew of the Raza go up against their counterparts from the Alternate Universe. They know each other so well they keep anticipating each other's moves.
  • You Are Number 6: Because the crew don't remember their given names in "Episode 1", they call each other by the order in which they woke up as a placeholder. The only exception to this is the Android. After The Reveal that their original selves were murderous criminals, they decide to keep the numbers to separate them from their former identities and only use their given names around people who don't know they've been mindwiped.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: Thanks to the Android jumping through time and getting glimpses of the future, Five assumes that anyone she saw in those events that haven't happened yet must survive for those events to take place. The others aren't as confident time is immutable.
  • You Said You Would Let Them Go: Non-verbal example. In "Wish I'd Spaced You When I Had The Chance", Three tells Kierken the truth about the white hole bomb when he promises not to shoot down the Marauder. Kierken orders it shot down anyway. Fortunately, Five had sabotaged the missile launcher beforehand, so it's his forces that take the hit.
  • You Wake Up in a Room: The crew wake up in stasis chambers on a ship without any memory of who they are or why they're there.

Alternative Title(s): Dark Matter