Containment Season 1 Episode 1 Review: Pilot

at .  Updated at .

From the very moment I heard about the premise of Containment, I was hooked. Reminiscent of Outbreak, set in Atlanta like The Walking Dead, Julie Plec's new drama sounded perfect. Plus there's Chris Woods, so, you know.

Where most pilots spend time setting up the drama, Containment Season 1 Episode 1 jumps right into it revealing that things aren't going so well inside the cordon.

For the CW, a network which prides itself on churning out some of the best (and only) sci-fi and supernatural television of the five major non-cable networks, Containment marks a turn into a more adult style of programming. 

They seem to be gunning for the older end of the coveted 18 to 41 demographic, and they've definitely got me.

What starts as a 48-hour quarantine, we learn in the show's opening credits, has turned into a 13-day attempt at defying death inside a small area of Atlanta. 

National Guard members are rolling into the streets. The walking dead are being shot on site to stop the spread of a highly infectious disease which has a 100% fatality rate. 

Bombs are going off. Uninfected people are screaming. The chaos is overwhelming. Then we flash back to Day 1 of the quarantine.

It all seems so perfectly normal, and this is where Containment really sucks in viewers.

Containment spends just the right amount of time introducing our major players and their relation to one another before throwing them all into the midst of this threatening epidemic. As the audience we're on a mission to figure out how they'll all survive or if they even will.

Lex Carnahan and his girlfriend Jana have a spat about her reluctance to move in with him. His friend and co-worker Jake (and Jana's ex-boyfriend and friend) is a loner-type, dedicated to his work, with some sort of brokenness hidden inside him. He's good at his job and well-liked by his peers, but, perhaps more than anyone else, he seems afraid of the prospect of dying. 

Teresa and Xander are a teen couple facing the impending arrival of their baby. A baby which Teresa's mother insists she give up for adoption. To avoid that fate, the couple decide to run away together.

Katie, a mother and teacher, takes her classroom on a field trip to sing for sick patients in the hospital where Patient Zero has recently received care.

Dr. Cannerts eagerly tries to determine the origins of the virus in order to figure out how they might stop it.

And then the Quarantine happens. 

Lovers are separated, perhaps forever. Children can't be reunited with their parents so Katie finds herself caring for all of them while stuck inside the hospital. No one is allowed to touch for fear of spreading the disease.

No one is allowed to touch.

No human contact for (at least) 48 hours so that this disease can be stopped in its tracks. Everyone is supposed to stay 4 to 6 feet away from other humans. 

So then I find myself, as a mother, wondering what I would do if I couldn't comfort my children with my presence. A hug or a cuddle. What if I couldn't hold my husband's hand? 

Then the show is set in Atlanta and I live here so the sites and places and names are all REAL ones (except the hospital name) and it's just sort of gripping for me in a way other dramas aren't.

Already there are characters I'm pulling for and characters I distrust immensely, one being Claudia Black's Dr. Lommers, a high level executive with the Department of Health and Human Services who is responsible for issuing the quarantine order and locking down a grid of the city. 

There's something about her that knows more than she's letting on, but what she knows isn't good. The lack of fear in her voice and demeanor says that there's more going on here than we realize just yet, but our characters will figure it out. While the antagonist of the series is definitely the virus, Dr. Lommers is a close second.

Conveniently, she places herself outside the cordon while those on the inside fight to figure out how to stay alive. 

Will they? How many major characters will we lose during the 13-episode run of Containment Season 1? How will they manage to stay safe when they are literally trapped inside a hospital with death all around them?

We'll definitely find out as Containment continues, and I know I'm eager to see it all play out.

What did you think of the Containment Pilot? Are you excited to see Chris Woods back on the small screen? How do you think this season will play out? Let's chat about this new series in the comments below and if you missed the pilot you can watch Containment online!

Pilot Review

Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
  • 4.0 / 5.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
User Rating:

Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (22 Votes)

Miranda Wicker was a Staff Writer for TV Fanatic. She retired in 2017. Follow her on Twitter.

Show Comments
Tags: ,