Eureka renewed for fifth season

And five reasons why the show works.

Eureka will be back for a fifth season, it has been confirmed. Syfy renewed the series due to a wildly positive reception to its renewed format as well as consistent numbers, despite the fact that the show isn’t far into its fourth outing.

Eureka, which stars Colin Ferguson, Salli Richardson-Whitfield, Joe Morton, Erica Cerra, James Callis and Neil Grayston among others, has been a solid performer for Syfy, garnering good critical reception for its light-hearted approach and clever writing. In honour of its fifth season, here’s five reasons why we think the show’s continued to work. Spoilers may be ahead for UK viewers.

Approach

At a time when dramatic storylines are the norm in science fiction, it’s refreshing to see a show that doesn’t take itself quite as seriously as others. Eureka might not ever have the same level of anticipation in terms of plot resolution as its peers, but it works on a gentler level, and its endurance is a testament to going against the grain slightly, from time to time.

Characters

Carter is the heart and soul of the show, but Allison, Lupo, Zane, Henry and others make it as special as it really is. Strong characterisation is a must for any television show, but some are totally defined by them, and this is an example of that. Its adaptability also helps – peripheral characters can be moved in and out, just look at Matt Frewer.

Reboot

Pay attention other shows; that is how you retcon your storyline. Eureka’s reboot worked fantastically well, providing an organic way to refresh the show’s format while still preserving the core of what makes it so appealing. The downsides are, of course, making Fargo one of the leads and James Callis’s godawful American accent.

Guest stars

Although some shows in science fiction may be considered ‘prestige’ shows – the Fringes, Losts, Battlestars and others that get the most coverage – it’s shows such as Eureka that are the backbone of the genre, and these live and die on their guest stars. Just look at Supernatural, Warehouse 13, Smallville and others. Eureka’s been smart in its guest star casting, appealing to geek culture and others for its sources.

Fan support

As Chuck proved last year, fan support is vital to the smaller shows such as Eureka, and this has it in spades. From fansites to having a real-life Cafe Diem at San Diego Comic-Con, it’s hard to deny that the show has a wide support base, reflected in its modest, but consistently solid ratings from week to week.