Thursday, October 6, 2011

Terra Nova, The Dino Poo of a Lost Attempt

Let me lay it all out there before I dissect Terra Nova. The show is a thinly-veiled attempt to recapture the win that was LOST, a wannabe that will never be. Good. Now that that's out of the way...

I adored the first hour of the pilot, Genesis. Maybe that's because I'm more into time travel than dino poo. Though a bit heavy-handed with environmental agenda, I loved the concept of where our planet will be in a hundred and thirty some-odd years. I loved a protagonist that I could root for from scene one. I love that he is sixteen ways of hot, is all alpha-male, resourceful, tortured and fiercely protective of those he loves. The selection process to determine who would go back in time to be part of a new colony was exactly as I'd always imagined it: first, the most desirable citizens who had the most to offer a new civilization; second, a lottery. I love the infinite and baser conflicts inherent in trying to begin humanity anew.

The second hour lost me, pun intended. With precision and extensive dissertation, I can draw parallels between the characters in Terra Nova and the characters in LOST. The waterfall, the cryptic drawings, the overbearing, mysterious compound leader, the rogue sect, the young hottie to draw in the hard-to-pull-away-from-the-CW demographic of teenage girls. Need I continue? The only difference I could spot was dinosaurs instead of polar bears. I respect what Stephen Spielberg and FOX are trying to do.  Wait, no I don't. Why is it when networks get something truly fresh like Life on Mars (NBC), they give it a shoestring budget and mere weeks to get a foothold before they yank it, while they spend twenty-plus million on a tired spin they believe to be a guarantee? Sounds like another industry I know.

Will I continue to watch? For a time, I suppose. There is no crime in stacking up the DVR with Jason O'Mara deliciousness. But if they go all black fog on me, I'm out of there.

What do you think of Terra Nova? Am I just disgruntled because the only time travel will be in the pilot eppie?


Charles Gramlich said...

I never saw Lost so I don't know the parallels. I can see a fair number of influences from other shows in Terra Nova, but so far they haven't been obnoxious to me. I'm not particularly enamored of the cast and was hoping for far more dinosaurs and less soap operishness.

I never saw Life on Mars. I remember being very very irritated when I found it wasn't an SF show. :)

Sherry A Davis said...

I just watched the third episode. Unfortunately, my DVR mistakenly recorded the overtime innings for the baseball game, so I missed about 17 minutes in the middle. (Don't ask how. It's convoluted and tedious) When it finally picked up the episode, it was all wishy-washy and stretching (IMO) to evoke the tender emotions between the main characters. Honestly, I felt more emotion from Captain Hard-Ass and his Lieutenant (She shot him. He said Thank you.)
My $.02

But I'll hang in there for a few more episodes ...for Jason Mara.:)

L.A. Mitchell said...

@Charles...there does seem to be far too few scary bumps in the night and far too much soap opera.

@Sherry...Captain Hard-ass was the only compelling suspense in the entire eppy. I think I figured out what the problem with Terra Nova seems episodic because it is. Everything is tied up in a nice neat bow at the end. Flying dinos, dead at the end. Mad virus, eradicated at the end. At least with LOST it took years, literally, to put together all the pieces. Oh, and the fact that Jim had been imprisoned in a hellish, apocolyptic prison for two years and emerges with a rock-hard six pack. Not even that....his washboard stomach is like a 32-case :)

Eric said...

I wish I could be the protagonist with a 32-case stomach! I have a lot to live up too! :P

Charles, I wasn't a LOST fan either, but did like Life On Mars quite a bit. You could never pull L.A away from the T.V when either was on, but much better than the Project Runway show that would make one want to run for the hills at a most fast pace. Just can't succumb to that show. LOL