From the forces that brought the world LOST, Supernatural, and Iron Man; JJ Abrams, Eric Kripke, and Jon Faverau, comes this new high concept television series set in the near future in a world where all forms of electrical energy have been wiped out in what has been dubbed “the blackout.” The show follows the adventures of The Mathesons’, a uncle, niece, and nephew combination, along with their friends, as they struggle to come to gripes in a world where the government we know is gone and a harsh miltia, known as the Monroe Republic, has taken over the region that was once Chicago and its suburbs.
What can I say about Revolution? Out of all the pilots that I have seen for the upcoming fall season, this is the show that shows the most potential out of the lot. With a great concept and a great creator (Eric Kripke) behind it, I have faith that the show is going to get better as it goes. Though this episode was plagued with having to set up a lot, I will say that it does lay the groundwork amicably and succeeds where so many other high concept shows have failed. However, this pilot was not as good as LOST‘s pilot nor should it be compared to that show. Though planes may have come falling out the sky in this pilot, as in LOST, the mysterious and mystic levels of mystery aren’t as captivating as LOST‘s and that’s where it is faulted. Like FlashForward, ABC’s failed attempt at doing “LOST 2.0″, the pilot cops out with a few cliche mysteries that come up from having this type of concept as your show and well, a few of them are evidenced in the trailer.
In fact, the one problem of the trailer, is that it ruined a few of the big moments that this pilot had. Firstly, the reveal at the end of the trailer is the same reveal as the end of the pilot and well, that was a huge bummer. Had that moment been kept secret, the pilot would feel a little more amped up. Secondly, the promotional imagery, the one on the stairs ruins another one of the big twists, that comes very early on in the pilot, which, again, is another huge bummer. But lastly, unlike LOST, the show does not set up enough characters for me to feel like they have a lot of stories going, now I know going forward there’s going to be new characters thrown into the mix (Daniella Alonso is a regular, but starts her work in episode 2 apparently) but I’m worried that right now, they’re going to heavily rely on the weaker mysteries to pass by some of the time. The pilot does tread into too much cliche at times but my gut tells me that they’re only doing that because of the world building that it needs to do, something I understand, and appreciate, though I hope it does not last that long.
Now, what I can say is that this show does show a lot of potential. Miles Matheson, the lead played by Billy Burke, has the potential to be a very solid male hero. He’s got the quiet demeanor to be a Dirty Harry like protagonist and Tracy Spirkados, who plays the female lead Charlie Matheson, also has some room to grow, but I think the character who could prove to be the most interesting is Zak Orth’s Aaron, he seems to be taking on a Hurley like role. I gotta admit, Hurley was one of my favorite Lost characters, and especially since Aaron is someone who, before the blackout, had quite a bit of dough. I’m a little worried that Giancarlo Esposito and Elizabeth Mitchell, two of my favorite actors, are going to be underused as the series goes as there characters seem very stereotypical and limited, so here’s hoping that with the series evolution that they’ll be given more screen time. Especially since it’s heavily implied that Mitchell’s character only appears in flashbacks (but my gut tells me a twist is due sometime in the first 13 episodes).
All in all, I believe Revolution could fill the void that LOST left as I trust that Eric Kripke and company, as long as they stay true to there vision and avoid trying to be LOST‘s full on replacement. All it needs to do is give its supporting characters things to do that are of interest and depth and it could find itself not being the next series to enter the high concept ensemble graveyard alongside failed entries The Event and FlashForward. Give this show a gander as they could be onto something.
The pilot premieres on September 17th at 10pm on NBC.