September 25, 2011 at 3:06 pm #228643
This year’s candidate for TV’s most expensive weekly series ever. So much is riding on this for Fox; we find out if it was money well spent.
Episode 1.1: Genesis
Written by Craig Silverstein, Allan Loeb and Kelly Marcel; directed by Alex Graves
It’s the year 2149; earth is overdeveloped, overcrowded and overpolluted. Knowing there is no way to reverse the damage to the planet, a coalition of scientists managed to open a fracture in the space-time continuum, creating a portal to prehistoric Earth. A doorway which leads to a world that allows for a last-ditch effort to save the human race; to change the future by correcting the mistakes of the past.
The Shannon family join the 10th pilgrimage of settlers to this colony. Jim, a devoted father with a checkered past; his wife, Elisabeth, a trauma surgeon; Josh and Maddy, their teenage offspring, and Zoe, their pre-teen daughter. A secret involving Zoe soon endangers their place in this utopia. Terra Nova is governed by Cmdr. Nathaniel Taylor, the first pioneer of the settlement who warns the travelers while this is a place of new opportunities, all is not as idyllic as it seems. It’s a land fraught with danger – of the dinosaur kind, and a splinter colony of renegades led by Mira, violently opposed to Taylor and his leadership.September 26, 2011 at 1:24 pm #228645
bumpedSeptember 26, 2011 at 1:55 pm #228646
I’m really excited for this. Mainly because I am a huge fan of Jurassic Park. Wrong reason to watch it?September 26, 2011 at 4:25 pm #228647
I don’t think the buzz has been so good for this one, but I’m a sucker for shows like this, so I’m in!September 26, 2011 at 5:20 pm #228648
It’s hard to base this off the first twenty minutes, but NONE of these characters are likeable yet. I would not have minded the kids being left behind simply so I wouldn’t have to hear them whine for the next hour and a half.September 26, 2011 at 7:35 pm #228649
At about 1.5 hr. in, I realized that I was checking my mail and otherwise not really paying attention anymore. This just seems too hokey and too cliched for me. Meh.September 27, 2011 at 12:53 pm #228650
I was actually insanely impressed with this series. I thought that it was exceptionally made. The introduction of the characters and the setting was highly engaging. This must a really expensive show to produce and I hope it pays off for them. I actually think that Jason O’ Mara will serve as a good lead for this show. I am already curious as to how going back into the past plays into how time moves along. The possibilities are endless and I for one am sure to tune in.September 27, 2011 at 2:20 pm #228651
I was pretty impressed with the show too. Sure, it was cliche at times but for a first episode I thought it was solid. Hopefully, they can build on this.September 27, 2011 at 2:36 pm #228652
I quite enjoyed Terra Nova. it was great. the effects where kind of cheesy, but i get that it’s a network tv show.
I came across this hillarious GIF.September 27, 2011 at 6:08 pm #228653
I thought this was a solid episode. I will definitely continue watching. It was very well directed and it featured some good acting from Jason O’Mara, Stephen Lang and Allison Miller.
I heard some critics say that they were worried where the rest of this series would go. I actually thought they set up the rest of the series well. They set up a lot of mysteries involving the best character (Stephen Lang) and set up a “father-daughter” relationship with the best two actors (Lang and Miller).
My major complaint with this show is that the special effects were horrible (with the exception of most of the Slasher stuff). This is reported to be the most expensive broadcast network pilot in history and yet it couldn’t even come close to the special effects from Battlestar Galactica (a series on a low rated network).
Genesis: 8/10September 28, 2011 at 5:20 pm #228654
I enjoyed the pilot. I mean, it’s just as cheesy as I thought it would be, but it’s still a fun series.
I’m also a sucker for dinosaurs!September 29, 2011 at 10:17 am #228655
As much as I love seeing science-fiction continue to populate the airwaves, there are times when I also think that the writers of such shows occasionally half-ass character work in exchange for what they think will be fun and exciting action sequences. Don’t get me wrong. That chase scene with the Lang and O’Mara in the vehicle, weaving between dinosaurs and Sixers, was pretty great — it worked as a wonderful climax for an otherwise expositional (but hey, aren’t they all?) pilot episode.
I certainly wonder how big a part the Future will play in the series. Lang’s Commander Taylor has already admitted that he has a direct line of communication with people from 22nd century Chicago. And while the logistics of such a line of communication makes absolutely no sense, particularly since they are in a separate “time stream,” hopefully it will play a larger role in the episodes to follow. Surely the series will not drop Daddy Shannon’s stint in prison and never bring it up again…. will it?
That next-to-last scene, with Mira, the leader of the Sixers, spewing factoids about what the calculations carved on the cave wall were all about, was pretty bad. I audibly groaned more than once in that scene. In a show with this big a budget, why the hell can’t they do less telling and more showing? That said, I want to find out more about the Sixers. In fact, it would be terrific if the Shannon family ended up discovering a deep dark secret about Taylor’s reign of Terra Nova, and we began seeing the Sixers as the good guys. At the very least, it would keep this show from being so black-and-white, us-versus-everything outside the walls.
The pilot was good. Not great, but good in a popcorn flick sort of way. I hope that it gets some brains to go with the brawn. If so, I think it could be a major hit.
Grade for “Pilot”: B-September 29, 2011 at 1:08 pm #228656
I would have paid cash money for those slasher-tails to munch on those annoying teenagers. Why, why, why must every single show like this impose upon us a demographic-pandering Zac Efron wannabe? They did it in “V,” they did it in “Falling Skies,” heck Spielberg even did it in “War of the Worlds.” What’s more, all four of those kids in question even look the same. Do the producers think younger people won’t watch a show unless a stringy-haired brat is given manufactured conflicts with his parental unit? Was “Battlestar Galactica” any less compelling for not having a teenage boy whine and pine in the background of a perfectly good story? Or “Lost”?
That rant aside, this was an okay pilot. Like “Falling Skies” it takes an interesting premise and populates it with characters so sanitized as to sap them of much dramatic interest (though I did like Noah Wyle’s performance on that show and would have liked someone like that here). The hunky yet noble leading man. The lovely yet noble leading lady. The brainy yet noble teenage daughter. The, um, teenage son (seriously, someone eat him already). How about roughing their edges a bit? They did break the law to have a third child. Was it planned? Adorable as she is, reproducing is not a virtue in and of itself, especially when population control is so important to survival. So what’s the deal there?
The episode gets stuck in the usual pilot trap of too much clunky exposition — and a story with this premise doesn’t need so much extra plot upfront. Everyone has a past that is either explained or cryptically talked around. Aren’t a prison escape, time travel, and dinosaurs enough for one pilot? Did we need the Sixers or the mystery of Stephen Lang’s missing son already? That kind of story cram feels like insecurity by the showrunners, like they don’t think their story will hold up without plenty of extras thrown in on top of it.
I’ll stick with this show for a few weeks to see if it improves. The names in the credits are very encouraging: David Fury (“Buffy,” “Angel,” “Lost”), Rene Echevarria (“The 4400,” “Medium,” “Deep Space Nine”), and of course Spielberg. A lot of folks with “24” on their resume too, but hopefully they crib from the good years of “24” and not the very bad ones.September 30, 2011 at 9:07 am #228657
I agree that the characters sort of ruin this. I’ll always be amazed at how tv writers always need to give more than two kids to the star family. It’s like they’re setting themselves up for unnecessary characters or kids that just run out of a scene after barely saying a line. Even if in this case it was because of the “family of four” thing and the extra kid that got them in trouble.
The second half of the Pilot centered on looking for kids that managed to annoy me right away. So the second half was just me waiting for dinosaours, hating on the kids, thinking if I would be back for episode 2 and checking my twitter timeline. Spielberg as usual has an obsession with teenage boy and his dad being at odds, so even if he’s just an executive producer here (is he actually? common…) somebody managed to please Papa Spielberg and his “thing”.
I care only for Stephen Lang’s character, it looks to be that villain in one episode, good guy in the next, and he brings that weird camp/not camp factor to this. So that was a plus for me. I liked the effects too, even though that scene of him and O’Mara’s character looking at the horizon with that insane white glow was very cheesy.
I may come back for one more, but this just isn’t my thing. I really don’t care about the “sixers”, I don’t care at how the adapt to life on Terra Nova, so it’s just Stephen Lang and dinosaurs for me.October 2, 2011 at 1:59 pm #228658
I was going to comment, but I think 742 said everything I meant to. Believe me, Daniel, you were not the only person who would have paid real money to see those dinosaurs eat those teenagers. Wow, they were annoying. And the entire second hour of the show was about them. Or, at least, it felt like it was. Wow. Maybe they’ll become interesting? Maybe? (Please?)
I also thought there was just too much stuff in this. TOO MUCH. Like, “Hey, you’re not interested in this plot, how about this one?!” The ending scene, as Spenser said above, just took this completely over the top.
I don’t know…. There’s potential for a good show here. But, based on the pilot, I just have no idea what kind of show this really is. I’ll give it a couple more episodes. Maybe it will find some focus.
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