The River Review: An Unexpected Turn

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I've said it before, and I stick to my belief that there has not been nearly enough Bruce Greenwood on The River. "Doctor Emmet Cole" did a bit to remedy that. Watching what he encountered on everyone's favorite found footage we got some real insight into his adventure.

We saw where he parted ways with Lena's father, Russ and took off into the jungle looking for the "source" he always spoke of. He also mentioned that Lena was marked and special.

Apparently the only two people who knew Emmet and Lena were in contact were Emmet and Lena. The real shocker was Lena admitting to Lucas that she set off the beacon to get someone to try to find her dad. Talk about dancing with the devil.

Show Within a Show

On the tapes, Emmet and his two cohorts encountered some pretty cool things and captured them on film. I especially liked the angels wings imaged in the trees. Not so pleasant was the cute little monkey that didn't skin itself. Then Manny was skinned.

It seems to be a theme with shows I cover this week, skinning. I'll venture to guess I'll be safe come Sunday on Army Wives and GCB. One can only take so much skinning before they start to get a complex!

We also learned how the Coles ended up on The Undiscovered Country in the first place. You could have given me a dozen chances to guess how it all came about and I would never have guessed Tess was the genesis of the program.

This episode proved just how long it can take to reveal secrets and why holding them back can add to the drama. What I thought I knew about their family was far from the truth.

After Manny was disposed of, Emmet's other camera person took off, leaving him alone. As the days progressed, Emmet was starving, filming himself and thinking where they were heading was a window between life and death.

He was wondering if he might see the daughter they lost soon after birth. Somehow he called Lincoln with a satellite phone, never letting on he was distressed. It was like watching a nature movie where you know the person is going to die at the end, and your watching all of their poor decisions and just wondering why.

Even though Lena got them into this mess in the first place, she continues to be the strongest and most curious on the Magus. She searched her body until she found the symbol Emmet had seen on her when she was a child. What he thought made her special.

After she found it and they continued watching the video, seeing Emmet break his leg, dragging himself along the ground and contemplating eating his dog, I was hoping like hell that something would come to her, that a damned blue bug would possess Jahel, anything!

Then, like a gift from above - Emmet was rescued. He was healed and taken to an outpost of some sort. His dog was ALIVE and I think now is when we will find out what it is that Kurt knows, or has been trying to hide. A thriving outpost when Emmet was dropped off was a ghost town mere months later. I have a feeling the real fun is about to being and with only two episodes left and little chance for renewal, we'll likely never know what fun there is to be had.

The cancellation of Terra Nova this week was bad news for non-traditional shows that are having a tough time finding their footing. People gave up too soon on The River and didn't have faith that the same people responsible for entertaining them in theaters would do it on television.

It's not perfect by any means, but The River has managed to entertain throughout it's first six episodes, and I expect the last two will be no exception.

Doctor Emmet Cole Review

Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.7 / 5.0 (33 Votes)

Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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The River Season 1 Episode 5 Quotes

What if everything we've seen, what if it all comes in one source?


OK,enough with the bugs. It was cute in the Lion King, but can we crack open the rations?