‘Falling Skies’ Premiere on TNT & What I Thought

by on June 19, 2011

in Entertainment, tv reviews

With the premiere of Falling Skies on TNT, I have to say that the huge build up, even with the last 60-second countdown to the 2-hour premiere, was a pretty impressive marketing campaign.  But did it pay off?  I think it might have.

'Falling Skies' promo art

I found the 2-hour premiere of Falling Skies a very low-keyed episode that developed the premise of the fact that there was an alien invasion several months ago and that we’re following the rag-tag group of surviving humans as they try to figure out how to defeat the aliens while running from them. If it sounds familiar, well, I’d say it was like Battlestar Galactica… the walking version. I’m hoping it will develop into something as near as good too.

Falling Skies is produced by DreamWorks Television for TNT. It stars Noah Wyle, Moon Bloodgood, the venerable Will Patton and Colin Cunningham amongst other great cast.

The show didn’t suck. That’s for sure, but it felt flat to me. I’m not sure why it did, it just did. I liked the multi-legged aliens but the CGI mechanized two-legged machines, though not bad, was far from perfect.

There was one very interesting clue though that they mentioned in the premiere and that was that if the aliens are six-legged, why did they create two-legged machines?

I think that’s an interesting distinction that will play out as the series continues on.

As if there wasn’t enough drama, the humans, while scouting out aliens, find themselves at the mercy of other humans looking for their supplies. It all worked out in the end in an appropriate fashion.

Did you notice the nod given to Star Wars with a Battle Droid action figure that was used on a battle map? And then there was reference to Harry Potter. I swear I heard some other nods, but don’t recall them right now.

All in all, Falling Skies was about middle of the road for me, with what I would consider to be interesting potential. It reminded me of the premiere episode of Star Trek: The Next Genearation. After seeing the series and looking back at that premiere, I cringed at the stiffness of the cast in that first episode. But they grew into their roles.

I hope that happens here. It has to, as it seems that they are hinging this show on character driven stories, from what I think I’ve seen so far. There are character stories peppered with what looks like sufficient action spots to appease most Nielsen families.  We’ll see how that goes.

What I hated was so much hype all day long on TNT and prior to each commercial break, the previews of upcoming scenes. I despise that kind of marketing.

What I liked was there is a good story underneath it all that could seriously bring it to the screen once the cast settles into their roles. There was a feel of other favorite series I’ve watched in the past.  One of my contributors said that knowing Spielberg, there will be a twist. I think that why there are two-legged machines will be that twist.

With that… yes, I’ll be tuning in next week… or more than likely, DVR’ing Falling Skies for Monday or Tuesday viewing. I want to see where this new jouney takes me.

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