Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Revolution: Intriguing, Not Revolutionary

Revolution.  I do love the second O.

             A world where i-phones, computers, and cars suddenly stop working, never to flash on again is a scary notion for technology-dependents of 2012.  Revolution, a show from J.J. Abrams, capitalizes on this fear.  The pilot episode, directed by Iron Man's Jon Favreau and currently available on hulu, sets up a dystopian tale where all technology is wiped out in a single moment.  It then flashes fifteen or so years later, to a future that more closely resemble's the distant past.  Cars and planes lie dormant as militia and tribes fight and settle in the aftermath of the technological apocalypse.
               In one small farming settlement, Charlie loses her father when he is killed by the militia for secrets he has about the cause of the blackout.  Charlie's brother is taken by them, forcing her to find her long lost soldier Uncle, who has a mysterious connect to Bass, the leader of the militia.  Pilot episodes of "big story" conceptual dramas are usually intriguing.  Revolution certainly is, especially in the moments it echoes Lost (If you watch it, tell me the last moment of the show doesn't remind you of the computer down in the hatch). I liked some of the characters, especially those with questionable motives like the young soldier Nate.  However, though the premise of the show has series promise, it still didn't draw me in immediately, especially with its long traveling/camping scenes.  (Harry Potter 7 much?)
            Immediate audience connection is very important for high-concept shows.  Otherwise, they die out very very quickly.  (See Flashfoward, The Event, The River...The list of tragic ends to interesting concepts is rather bleak.) I think Revolution has a chance of being a very interesting show that lives up to its name, especially with warring militaries and civilians.  However, at least in the first episode, I was merely intrigued.  For now, that's enough to keep me watching, just to be there if the show becomes truly revolutionary.  Watch the show on hulu now, or catch it when it premieres September 17 on nbc.

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