Blogging some of my past tv reviews from Facebook — this was my lukewarm response to “Revolution.”
The pilot of “Revolution” (2012) gets the high-concept sci-fi series off to a really good start — it’s smart, interesting, and it’s got a pretty original premise. (This is not a story about an electromagnetic pulse – the globe loses all electricity because of some other unexplained phenomenon.) I’d give it an 8 out of 10.
There’s a nice amount of pathos and action, including a clever use of a bottle of liquor in the pilot. There’s also some really good special effects depicting a post-apocalyptic world. (I can’t tell what is CGI and what is a matte painting, but it all works.) The script is damned good, including an awesome surprise at the end that I never saw coming, but which makes perfect sense.
Two things worry me about the show’s chances for success. One, the premise is interesting … for a miniseries. Or for one season of a television show. Or for maybe two seasons. After that, can we really remain interested in watching an agrarian society? Wouldn’t it just basically be “Game of Thrones” with a few firearms thrown in and a lot of obsolete machines lying around?
Two, this is a character-centric “soft” science fiction show with an overarching mystery, obviously inspired by the success of “LOST.”. Which is awesome. Except, since “LOST,” shows like that rarely survive long on network television. “V” was deservedly short-lived, as was the superior “Flash-Forward.” Yes, “The Walking Dead” is a big hit, but that’s really more an episodic horror show, and it’s free to do more things because it’s not an a major network. For whatever reasons, programs like “Revolution” just don’t seem to last very long.
By the way – if anyone recognizes the Dad, and can’t remember where they know him from … the actor’s name is Tim Guinee. He played the unfortunate hospital orderly in “Blade” (1998). That was bugging me like crazy until I looked it up.