Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Falling Skies | "We Actually Know What We're Doing…Promise."

Having watched TNT's new show Falling Skies, set in the aftermath of a brutally effective alien invasion which basically could be a sequel to "District 9" about some very unhappy green people, I've come to the odd conclusion that this show has some surprisingly well-thought out plot points.

1. Noah Wyle is kind of an embarrassing amalgam of his characters Carter (from E.R.) and … er, well, The Librarian (from The Librarian. It doesn't matter that he had a name). However, I love Noah Wyle spewing historical inanities and looking befuddled when people do not do the 'right' thing automatically. I also love Noah Wyle with a beard, so this is actually more of a selling point than anything else. He plays former U.S. history teacher Tom, second in command to an army guy (played by the shitty dad from Armagedon who gives his kid the toy space shuttle), leading 100 fighters and 200 civilians in an exodus out of South Boston.

"Hey, Weaver! How d'you like them apples!?"

2. There are two types of aliens so far, "Skitters," the actual alien soldiers who seem to be some kind of lizard-insect cross, possessing six segmented legs balanced radially beneath their humanoid torsos, and "mechs," what we currently presume to be robots, since they cannot house a grown Skitter in their chassis. *SPOILER* The aliens also kidnap human children and strap them with organic, millipede-like critters to mind control them for some horrible purpose. A side character, a teacher to the civilian children in the show, says that one girl from his older class raised an interesting point about the mechs when they were discussing the aliens' biology and technology; humans tend to create robots that look like humans, but Skitters are hexapedal and Mechs are bipedal. Noah suggests it's a psychological tactic, but I'm calling it now: it's human kids in the suits. Aliens stole them, put them in walkers suited to their physiology, and now you're blowing up your own children. Aside from the psychological impact of that, I assume it helps dwindle the gene pool and kids are just more susceptible to the brainwashing. One of these kids is Tom's middle son, Ben, and at least the first half of Season 1 looks like it's going to deal with rescuing him and finding a way to detach his painful, parasitic "harness."

3. The CG is surprisingly not so great, but the puppet work makes up for a good bit of it. It seems like a show out of which TNT could milk 3 solid seasons before the plot gets too contrived.

4. Colin Cunningham is a badass outlaw, which is awesome, but he's more a "Whatever is the best option" kind of badass, so he's going to be fun to watch. How many times will he betray people? I'm guessing like twice in this season. He's certainly not that douche from Battlestar Galactica.

He's like some kind of Jamaican hillbilly.
The guy who tried that on SG: Atlantis is now Conan the Barbarian, so it seems a wise career choice.

4. There are two smoking hot blonde girls. One is Jessy Schram as Karen, in military khaki and she rides a motorcycle. The other is Margaret (Sarah Carter), a damaged, possible sociopath with leather and lots of guns. Karen is dating Tom's oldest son Hal, but an annoying 15 year old Catholic is sweet on him, and Maggie is the one who kicks his ass, SO THEN WHO GETS TO HOOK UP AWKWARDLY!?

Karen, the second most badass blonde girl on the show.

5. Human tenacity seems to be the main theme. We respect nature, but fuck these bug things. Even the religious girl isn't super religious. She wants to work for God, but Karen openly mocks her (jealous), right after a scene where a biology teacher explains that we should be thankful for the opportunity to study even the life forms we hate. It's all very secular humanist and I'm completely down for that. It probably helps that TNT is known for its procedural dramas, so viewers are going to want another show that makes them feel like they know a substantial amount about more stuff they didn't major in at college. History, war, guns, explosives, medicine, robots, nukes, spaceships, exobiology, this show has all of it. Even lacrosse. Lacrosse for God's sake. And Rip-Sticks? That's gonna date the show like hell in a few years, but why not, grab the cool thing from last year while you can, TNT.

Religious girl who almost certainly will die horribly, and Moon Bloodgood's Doctor character.
Hot Asian-American lady with a background in ass-kicking roles and the coolest vampire name ever.

Two episodes in and I'm down for the first season. Not like I was doing anything on Sundays anyway.

1 comment :

  1. Thanks for the review! I love the Hal and Karen characters, and Lourdes annoys the hell out of me, too. Hopefully, she'll improve over the course of the show.


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