Den of the Cyphered Wolf

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Revolution Tv Pilot : Review

Abridged Verdict
Look this isn't new. It's fairly clichéd and on occasion narmy, but if you aren't a sci-fan who has seen this kind of thing a bazillion times you might get a kick out of it.

Plot Summary
So the basic backstory is your basic "After The End". Something caused most of the world's technolgy not to work and as a result society broke down into a bunch of factionalized "republics". One of the leaders of these republics thinks the protagonist's father knows why and tries to kidnap him. Everything goes to hell and dad. The protagonist's brothers is kidnapped. Her father with his dying breath charges her with finding her uncle and rescuing her brother.

After The End
First off, let me say I love a good after the end story, or at least the concept of a good after then end story. We like to take the basic rules for granted and after the end is the obliteration of those rules.  That said there are only a few of them I really like. Most of them wind up being brainless action cliche ridden nightmares. But the few that are smart can be really enticing speculative fiction.  


The Tribe

The Tribe Official Promo Trailer by TribalMadonna

Children of Men 

And now to make the really dark speech.

You like to believe that civilization is static. Fools! Governments rise and fall like the tides on a beach. The Aztecs, the Romans, The other Romans. All knew they were the shining light of their worlds yet they all collapsed. Latin is a dead language. What makes you think English will be any different in a millennium. The long night is an inevitability. Yet dispite all of that we are evolved to be social. We kling to the fact that our primary defense against that which would do us harm is our tendency to travel in packs.  After the fall there is always a rise.  And the story of that rise can be rather interesting. But be not fooled. We are but the mites on the ant and through the eyes of eternity no one will know our names.

The Verdict
Now that I've done my Dr. Manhattan thing, let's get to the actual review. As I kind of alluded to the "After the End" story allows you to do some cool stuff, and I just feel that this does nothing with that.  Now it's a fist episode and it might get interesting later, but so far it seems like your standard survival primetime television, and I've seen this before.

The Walking Dead
 Hell I've seen this before from Abrams.

Mad TV's Lost Parody

The pilot doesn't really answer or really even pose the questions that make after the end so interesting to me. What could cause society to collapse? How do people cope? How does the fall change the human condition? After said change in the human condition what do people want in whatever comes next? When resources are so strained that even the basics can't be taken for granted what are people willing to give up on, or work towards?

Ultimately my problem is that I walked into it hoping for a show revolving around those questions and what I got was a plot that could be told without them, entirely wasting their interesting setting.

Almost everything that happens in the pilot you could set up without "The blackout" and it would mostly stay the same. A son accidentally kills his father during a botched kidnappping attempt on the father. In hope of making a bad situation better the kidnappers nab the son. With his dying breath, the father tells the rest of his family to contact his brother in hopes he'll know what to do. 

While it's a bit of a thriller, plot you don't need an apocalypse to tell that story.
Also I don't like what I call the drama button. Now it's not just this show that does it. I've seen a lot of other series do it and I find it lazy writing in them too. I'm looking at you Breaking Bad. The writers give a character some affliction so that whenever they want they can make it seem as though the character is seconds away from death. By the way I love Breaking Bad and they learned their lesson. By the second season Walt's cancer is no longer a thing. But I get the feeling on this show every other week the asthma ridden character is going to have an attack. It's cheap, manipulative, and the show has far too much potential to rely on it.
Goddamn it now that I think on it even my Galactica did it. 

My point is at least be subtle about it.

All that said I really do like the concept., but I've seen the concept. I've seen the concept done better, though it is a bit early to judge. 

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