In Review: Foundation (S1 – EP5) Upon Awakening

This episode opens up with a flashback sequence that takes us through Gaal's origin story.

Synopsis: In Upon Awakening we see a flashback, which reveals the origins of Gaal’s conflict between faith and science. Also, the standoff on Terminus takes an unfortunate turn.


The Story

Having seen Gaal awakening from suspended animation at the end of last week’s episode. This episode opens up with a flashback sequence that takes us through Gaal’s origin story. It shows us the inner conflict that she has to go through between faith and science and ends with her initial contact with Hari Seldon.

Meanwhile, on Terminus we see Anacreon’s getting ready to attack the colonist. Things really begin to kick off when the leadership of terminus makes contact with an Empire ship, which orders them to take Anacreon’s leader Phara to the tower. However, this is exactly what Phara wants because her attack plan depends on her activating an EMP device. Realizing the grave danger of Phara’s plan Salvor who has lost communication with the leadership of the planet runs as fast as she can to warn them. But is too late as the Anacreon’s have opened fire on her people.

Meanwhile, back in space on one of the colony ships. Gaal struggles to ascertain where she is due to the fact that she doesn’t have the necessary authorization to use the ship’s systems. Frustrated by this. She proceeds to figure out ways in which she can get around the computers systems. Ultimately, when she does realize where she is heading. She learns that Raych Foss has set her on a course to her death. However, things may not be as they appear.


The Acting

Lou Llobell puts in a fantastic performance as Gaal Dornick. I really enjoyed the sequences where she was figuring out ways to get around the ship’s computer security systems to try and establish where she was heading. I also enjoyed the brief flashback scenes as well. Particularly the one in which Hari Seldon contacts her. 

Leah Harvey also has a really strong episode as Salvor is confronted with the horrific realization that she cannot stop the Anacreon attack. The standoff between Salvor and Phara (Kubbra Sait) is particularly chilling as it shows us just how much of an extremist Phara is.



Upon Awakening is easily the best episode we have had of Foundation to date as it really gets to the core of the characters and their motivations. The sequence at the end where the Anacreon’s on the Empire ship is visually stunning and frightening at the same time. As we get to view it from the point of view of both the Anacreon’s and the innocent colonists of Terminus.

Overall. Easily the strongest episode to date and hopefully the start of more strong episodes to come.

Foundation (S1 - EP5) Upon Awakening
  • Story
  • Acting
  • CGI & Stunts
  • Incidental Music

Ian Cullen is the founder of and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: When he is not writing for Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of You can contact ian at: [email protected]
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