I absolutely loved the concept of this episode of Metal Hurlant Chronicles! The story focused on a character named Hondo, who is a mercenary. At the beginning of the episode, he and his partner, Cole, are fighting off creatures that resemble dinosaurs and are called Hydras. The fight, though won, comes at a cost- Cole suffers a fatal wound and dies. Before dying, though, Cole tells Hondo that he wishes he had asked the native species of the planet Gatha about when he was going to die so that he could have better planned how to take care of his family. (The natives of Gatha have saved all the memories of the universe and thus know how to calculate the details of anyone’s death.)
After ending up in a nice lounge/bar, Hondo meets with his employer and is paid the bounty he is owed. He ends up sending both Cole’s share and his own to Cole’s widow, who thanks him. Since he has nothing else to do at the moment, Hondo decides to head towards Gatha and find out about his own death. Once he arrives, he discovers that the Turtle-Sapiens who live on Gatha have been expecting him. He is treated like a celebrity and paraded into a giant stadium where he asks when he will die. One of the Turtle-Sapiens tells him he has six years left to live, and then goes on a slight tangent about how many people come to ask about when they will die. In the tangent, the Turtle-Sapien mentions a few others who will make it, and that three of them have only 45 minutes left to live, while the fourth will survive another six years and die at exactly the same time that Hondo will.
The prediction quickly comes true, and then wanted thief Skarr (a gorgeous woman) and Hondo meet for the first time. The three men who had only 45 minutes to live were intergalactic policemen who were chasing her. As expected, they are quickly dispatched, and upon meeting, Hondo realizes that Skarr is “the woman of his dreams.”
Once both realize that they have the same amount of time to live, Skarr and Hondo decide to get married, and for a while, their life together is wonderful. They pillage starships and amass a gigantic fortune when they’re not enjoying their intimacies. However, as predicted by the Turtle-Sapiens, both come to realize that their relationship isn’t exactly what they wanted, and both betray each other.
I won’t give out any more details, so as not to spoil the entire episode, but I really enjoyed how the concept of the episode played out. It is supremely important to be careful what you wish for, and beware of self-fulfilling prophecies. I believe that the whole outcome of the episode could have been changed had Hondo and Skarr not been so impulsive after learning that they would die at the same time. In a sense, this episode of Metal Hurlant Chronicles was very similar to Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, in that both are tragedies of time and impulse.
So far, this has been my favorite episode of Metal Hurlant Chronicles to air, and I look forward to seeing the next new episodes. What did you think of ‘Master of Destiny?’ Did it have any standout moments for you? Let us know in the comments!
Metal Hurlant Chronicles airs Monday at 10/9c on the SyFy Channel. Watch full episodes on SyFy.com.