Touch Series Premiere Review: A Powerful Need

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I wasn't sure what to make of Touch when I first read the premise, but I was anxious to give it a try. Having never been any good at math, the thought of following a show about a child who sees the world through a kaleidoscope of numbers and calculations was a little daunting.

However, having used several tissues to get through the pilot. I'll admit that it's the emotional connection, not the mathematical one, that kept me glued to the screen.

Touch Premiere Pic

As I was a huge fan of 24, I was eager to see Kiefer Sutherland return to TV and, although Martin Bohm is no Jack Bauer, I wasn't disappointed. Martin's a man who will do anything to connect with his mute, emotionally challenged son.

It was interesting to note that the show never used the word autistic. Although some will see that as a cop out, I'm willing to give the writers some creative leeway if for no other reason than so many programs struggle to get the details right when they label a character as having this disease.

Jake has never spoken and doesn't like to be touched. So much so that Martin tells the social worker:

 I wouldn't do that if I were you. Not unless you want to spend the next three hours peeling him off the ceiling. | permalink

The pilot certainly had its strengths and weaknesses. There were so many characters that made an appearance that it's hard to determine how many will return past this first episode.

As much as I enjoyed the plot about the cell phone skipping around the globe, it did feel a little far-fetched. That the customer service agent would have the boy with the phone and a bomb strapped to him who's desperate for a bakery oven on one line - and the original phone owner on the other, who just happens to be a restaurant equipment salesman - seemed a stretch. 

But the pictures of Simon's deceased daughter Lily showing up on the jumbotron had me bawling my eyes out. I didn't realize I'd need my box of Kleenex for Touch.

And I question why Clea the social worker was so adamant about taking Jake away from his father after he climbed the cell tower. From what Martin said, he had his son in a very expensive special needs school. Shouldn't someone be investigating the school instead?

It was easy to feel for Martin. His career's in the toilet, his wife is gone and his son has never spoken to him and won't be touched. As Clea said: "Human connection is a powerful need" and Martin's life's lacking in connections.

What sold the show for me were two things:

  1. The inherent belief that we are all connected in a way that we really don't understand. Perhaps someone like Jake sees that connection in ways that most of us aren't able to. 
  2. Martin's unconditional love for his son. Hugs, kisses, and I love yous, things that most parents count on, were things that Martin has never had. But that didn't diminish his desire to protect and love his child and that's a powerful thing.

I'm not sure where this series will lead. Jake's special sight could take us to the future, the past or simply another view of our connection to one another - but I'm intrigued by the spirituality as much as the science and I look forward to watching episode two.

What grade would you give the Touch premiere?

 

Review

Editor Rating: 4.3 / 5.0
  • 4.3 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.5 / 5.0 (274 Votes)

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.

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Grade: meh. It's boring boring boring. It's constructed in the worst sense of the word. It's a cheap tearjerker. And to top it all - it's a PROCEDURAL. Phew. Good buy Keifer.

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Good starting point for a series. But the series creator is having the movie 'Knowing' close to his heart.

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As a valid favorite of "24" I watched The Touch because of "Jack Bauer", the show was good but was waiting for more action. The series has good acting but only because of Kiefer. I will keep watching as it has good plot. Hope it gets better with more action and adventure. Would rather see more of "24". Nothing compared to that!!!!!

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I think some of the people who keep saying it's far fetched, unrealistic, unbelievable, etc are missing the point. It's about the rare, subtle things that can connect people and as such is not supposed to be the normal, the usual, the everyday. It seems to be more about those once in a millennia occurrences and how randomness is not so random when it comes to the connectivity of the universe. It then tries to use the mathematical beauty of the world to communicate it using various fascinating concepts like phi(the golden ratio), fibonacci, etc. I can't wait to see where they go with this!

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i loved this show! escapism was achieved! I was a big fan of Heroes and very upset when it was cancelled so had big hopes for this show that was promoted as being by the same folks. i missed the first few minutes so didn't see how the cell phone bit started but I enjoyed that story line too - suspension of disbelief and all - it worked for me, but didn't hit me the way the main story line did... (my comment was too long so this is the edited version) i enjoyed it - as far as fantasy fiction goes i would have enjoyed reading this as a book/short story as well! And I just hope the writers can do it again for the rest of the series. I think they set the bar high and hopefully will be able to get back up there week after week.

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Just saw it on DVR. I'm more intrigued with the numbers - and I don't do numbers, but as a concept of all of us, not just sunflowers, somehow making one enormous Fibonacci number is something I could fall in love with for a while.

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As someone who has always been fascinated and somewhat connected with the wonders of Autism, and as someone who is intrigued and somewhat buys into such notions as 6 degrees of separation and the Butterfly Effect I was dying to watch this. In a time where we sometimes seem so divided and distant from one another it was great to have something shown emphasizing just how connected we all are. There were a great deal of things that were farfetched, they possibly overdid it with the numbers as the audience is smart enough to pick them out on their own,and of course God help the purpose who doesn't have their eyeballs glued to the tv screen from beginning to end as they may not be able to follow it all if distracted by something else...but outside of that. The premise is great, the emotional ride it takes the viewer on is fantastic. The acting is great.It's enough to keep me coming back for more.

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For me, Touch did not live up to the hype. The character development and dialogue were missing something. I think Tim Kring needs to slow down or simplify the plotlines and focus a little more on details which allow viewers to make a connection with the characters. Hopefully he won't make the same mistakes as he did in Heroes season 2.

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Am all the way in Ghana (West Africa) and I've already been touched by this Episode...Am going to re-watch to see if I missed a detail.

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After which you were glued to the screen.

Touch Season 1 Episode 1 Quotes

I'm not going up there. I'm scared of heights.

Martin

These patterns never lie but only some of us can see how the pieces fit together.

Jake
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