Sunday, June 19, 2011

"Falling Skies" doesn't have the suspense of "Event" and "Flash Forward"

Falling Skies”, a new sci-fi series produced in part by Steven Spielberg, premiered June 19 on TNT. Although lavish and complicated and in the tradition of other major series reviewed here, the premise seems much less compelling.

The 2 hour premiere starts with a child narrating from her drawings, about an alien attack six months ago. Yes, that’s right, there would be an EMP effect and maybe all electronics would be out.  (“They didn’t want to be friends.”) But the drama starts six months later as a father in in Boston suburb tries to keep his family together, as families seek to survive. The huge alien space ship has constructed a harness over the city; robots patrol the streets, and alien “arthropods” roam. Humans get turned into zombies when aliens parasitize them. It’s all pretty silly stuff than turns into internal bickering.

The trouble is, a sci-fi series is a lot more interesting when there is real mystery as to what has happened. That’s what makes “Flash Forward” and, to a lesser extent, “The Event” work.  This series is more in the vein of "V" without an Anna, or even the 1984 film "Red Dawn". 

The official site is here.

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