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Revolution

Revolution Review: A Powerful Premiere?

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There was mostly good on the Revolution pilot for me, and only some bad.

Let's get the latter out of the way first: I had a big problem with what is and isn’t working (keep reading for my snarky comments at the end) in relation to technology.

Now, obviously, some technology is going to be used as a plot device because Ben knew this was going to all go down, and, therefore, the algebra teacher’s super special flash drive and ability to boot up her computer didn’t bother me.

Revolution Premiere Picture

However, the narration in the beginning said that modern medicine isn’t really working without technology... so is Danny just benefiting from a left over inhaler because it doesn’t require a plug, merely a pump action?

The good news is for all of the minor quibbles I have over the technology, I never really dwelled on it. I was far more focused on getting to know the characters.

Beginning with the Matheson family: I can’t really say Charlie and Danny are exceptionally deep individuals at this point (but they are pretty, so there’s that), but I do enjoy the bond they share. Charlie is willing to quickly move on after watching her father (maybe) bleed to death to rescue Danny from the militia and keep her family intact.

Charlie doesn’t have the luxury of grieving for very long over anything. The only time we ever see her really show those emotions is when she’s at The Grand with Miles. Her predicament is undesirable, to say the least.

Speaking of Miles, Charlie has to quickly replenish her increasingly diminishing blood relatives to save Danny. Enter Uncle Miles as a not-so-willing participant. Miles is just the type of character to lead the Merry Misfits and the show. His past in the military provide a direct link to the Militia’s leader, Monroe, but he still manages to be incredibly relatable.

If I were in his shoes I, too, would prefer to drink myself to death and stay under the radar if possible, but now that the Militia has found him alive he only has two choices really: hunt or be hunted.

But, for me, the best character is Giancarlo Esposito’s Tom. Just like Breaking Bad’s Gus, Tom has that strong foundation Esposito can project so well. Hr knows when to intimidate and when to use force. There’s also a murky middle to him that makes his character cold and ruthless while simultaneously possessing a set of rules and boundaries.

As for the rest of the characters, Aaron, the guy who worked for Google, will likely come handy at some point, but right now he’s just boring; Nate is trying far too hard at being a Hunger Games participant – should he rebel against the capital or just ruthlessly kill all the Tributes?

Monroe himself has potential. I certainly like what David Lyons was able accomplish with the mediocrity of The Cape. Finally, I’m a huge fan of Elizabeth Mitchell and will gladly watch anything she does.

Finally, we’ll end where we started: with technology. The algebra teacher, Grace, leads me to developing a theory. I’m going to guess Ben, and maybe Miles, are part of a group that has the answer to turning everything back on. Miles alluded to as much during his talk with Charlie:

Charlie: Why did Monroe want my Dad? Why does he want you?
Miles: Monroe thinks your dad knew something, something important, and he thinks your Dad told me so I must know it too.
Charlie: What?
Miles: Why the lights went out maybe how to turn them back on. | permalink

However, the characters need a plan a course of action before turning everything back on since the Militias would probably prefer to use technology to start wars versus restarting humanity. The super secret flash drive has the ability to turn electronics on. The damage potential it has is far reaching. The Militia can literally turn all weapons of war back on.

Random Thoughts:

  • The re-emergence of nature is just so amazing. It’s sometimes hard to imagine how much we’ve shaped the world in our image and to watch nature take that back is powerful.
  • New ingenious uses of cars: Flower pots, the cart for a horse and postcard storage.
  • I keep expecting Florence and The Machine to begin playing in the background.
  • This technology thing is getting confusing; as long as someone reloads his musket with a rammer we’re all good? Or are they using them to shoot arrows? So, we’re at Pirates of the Caribbean levels of technology?
  • Should have brought the scotch with you Miles.
  • Did the world’s lack of technology bring about a closeout Henley sale?
  • I was slightly disappointed 4 8 15 16 23 and 42 weren’t used to boot up the computer.

What did you think? Grade the Revolution premiere now:

 

Review

Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
  • 4.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.2 / 5.0 (194 Votes)

Nick McHatton is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.

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OK , I was so excited to begin watching this show. I am fascinated with the survival methods we would have to learn if such an event did occur, sadly this show is greatly lacking in that creativity, but sure seems to include killing after gory killing. Not the kind of show me and my children will continue to watch thank you.

Richmondred13

It certainly wasn't boring, it was AWESOME and I can't wait for the next episodes. I'm sure if you see my other posts I'm a Billy Burke fan but even if you set that aside, think about this for a sec--not only do you have the director of "Iron Man" but you have the genius of J.J. Abrams at work on this incredibly refreshing NON-REALITY based series. I think it ROCKS, the character choices are perfect and I love the fact that it makes you wonder how are they going to top THAT episode! I LOVE IT! CAN'T WAIT FOR 10 P.M.-SHOWTIME-and should something come up where I'm not here for an episode, God Bless DVR'S!!!!

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They didn't say the "event" made modern medicine stop working - they said that without electricity, the means to produce it were destroyed. Therefore, using a relic like an inhaler is plausible. Also, guns also work in this series - you see a few non-muskets around. The Black Lieutenant uses a handgun, and soldiers in Monroe's camp have machine-guns in their hands. I'm assuming muskets are only used because guns are falling into disrepair 15+ years into the future. My only complaint about the pilot was brother Miles pulling all that ninja stuff to kill all those foot soldiers:
1.) It's implausible.
2.) It turns the foot soldiers from actual threatening enemies to cannon fodder, and to do so in the pilot really sets a tone for the rest of the series.
3.) I'm fearing that it'll exploit this really neat, speculative setting to make an action series.

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This pilot reminded me of Terra Nova. I had great expectations but found the inconsistencies became more important than the storyline. The visuals were interesting but not enough to carry the series. I will be surprised if it survives on Monday night when it goes up against Castle and Hawaii 50, both of which have large fan bases.

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Seemed a lot like Jerico. You could almost write the show yourself. Don't think it will make it. I say try again.

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Liked this pilot

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SM Stirling explored this theme in his novel Dies the Fire (which was reasonably self-contained, but lent itself to a follow-up series). He took much more care with the technology, making sure to kill not just electricity but also combustion. The characters spend some time running scientific tests to try to figure out the new physical laws and wondering why the human body is still functioning, before concluding that there's clearly something intentional and targeted at work. They don't have much time to think it through, though, because ALMOST EVERYONE DIES THE FIRST YEAR. Yes, we have people with all sorts of old-fashioned skills, and yes, American society functioned for a long time without electricity. But that tech level supported a much smaller population. Without the technology to move food and supplies around, the world faced a mass starvation event, with its accompanying disease and war (and lots of bad guy cannibals). You don't just magically drop down to a sustainable population level and then reboot at a geared down tech level. All of those people who died did not go quietly into the night.... Perhaps with steam power still on the tech menu they could have gotten working rails up fast enough to move a lot of food, but I doubt it. So I'm in the camp of commenters who think civilization would have collapsed HARDER than what's pictured. In the SM Stirling novels, everyone in Chicago died, and that strikes me as a much more plausible outcome of the sudden shattering of our tech base.

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Best looking show of the season so far.
Not happy they had to kill the father off right away. he seems like a good character.

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A quite interesting topic, but the only feeling I had watching this pilot is doubt. Background and landscape is pretty cool and realistic (In 15 years, nature was able to expend in cities, but it's not a huge jungle...). The soundtrack isn't very good. Sounds like a kind of medieval tune, I don't think that's the right thing to do fort a post-apocalyptical world. Clothes are too much trend and clean, looks like they just bought their stuff at H&M.
Why is google-guy looking for first aid kit in the plane? Isn't medicine a short lapsing time stuff? The device used by the teacher is a little bit "magical"... Perhaps they will end out with a rational explanation such as an electric field which turns on everything in a short range... Long story short story, next episode will be determinant for my choice of watching or not this show.

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I was really disappointed, with the total lack of realisms and the rubbish formulated plot (well if you can call it that) pretty boy meets tomboys girl , pretty boy has asthmas , girls looks out for him crap. When they got into hat RV that was supposed to be there for years, they just pulled back the creepers and there it was all gleaming inside, mould spores on the food in fridge. It that had been there for more that a years the food would be dried dust and their would be algae all over the RV. I wondered how long the usual NBC formula would surface, it involves guns, shooting and a bit of torture and oh yes there it was. Predictable, boring and lets just hope its gets better, but please drop the pretty boys and girls, were not interested in their romance ( i got up to make tea at these points) , we want a good story and plot.kill them off or something.

Revolution Season 1 Episode 1 Quotes

80 million dollars in the bank and I would trade it all, right now, for a roll of Charmin.

Aaron

Tom: To tell you the truth, when General Monroe finds out, he's gonna be irate and he might even have my head.
Danny: Let's hope.

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