Frequency Season 1 Episode 1 Review: Pilot

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Raimy always believed her father was a bad man, a bad cop, killed after he had royally screwed things up.

She found out differently on her 28th birthday, because on Frequency Season 1 Episode 1, Raimy talked to her father for the first time in 20 years.

The Ham - Frequency

If you've seen the movie Frequency, this story wasn't all that new to you. The movie was very similar to what played out in the pilot.

The movie was easily wrapped up in two hours, but there were differences, the most pressing being that the father wasn't a cop, but a fireman. 

That may seem like a small change, but I think it allows for a lot more exploration of Frank's story in the timeline before the alteration, if they want to go that way.

Already, so much of what we saw in the pilot has been eradicated. But what wasn't was the relationship between father and daughter. The one that was initially lost. The pain of believing the father she loved, her hero, abandoned her because he was "dirty."

If you've ever lost someone, you know you'd give pretty much anything talk to them one more time. You might even believe it if you heard their voice through an old ham radio. You'd be skeptical, sure, but you'd probably weigh your options.

I was older than Raimy when I lost my dad, but as luck would have it, the last time I really saw him was in 1996, too, so if I was to have the chance to talk to him again, we'd have as much of the world to catch up on as Raimy and Frank.

Raimy's a good detective, so it didn't take her long to realize someone must be messing with her. Frank from Queens with an eight-year-old daughter? Yeah, right. 

Who can blame either of them for being skeptical? But thankfully, it's not dragged out and the two are soon enjoying each other's company, such as it were.

Frank: You're a cop? Get outta here. So you're telling me in 20 years I'm going to be on teh job with my daughter?
Raimy: No.
Frank: What? I'm retired?
Raimy: You're dead. You die tomorrow.

What other choice did they have than to work together to save his life? 

Sadly, in their excitement, they didn't ask the right questions of the right sources (a quick Google search by Raimy would have been better than Frank asking Stan if he believed in the Twilight Zone stuff), because they missed anything pertaining to the butterfly effect.

What you do in the past will have an impact on the present. Raimy has the benefit of remembering both time periods (Does Frank? How did I miss that?), but her life is drastically different from one moment to the next.

Raimy: Can you feel it? Everything's different. My father wasn't murdered.
Gordo: OK. Uh, wait, what? I remember the accident. Your dad died in a car accident five years ago, just after his 43rd birthday. Tell me you remember that, kiddo.
Raimy: I remember it. I remember it both ways, life when he was murdered and life when he wasn't. Everything's changed, Gordo!

What was a bit odd was how she immediately knew her father wasn't murdered, but she didn't also feel she had lived for 20 years without her mother. You'd think that would have hit her just as squarely.

Somehow the memories other than her father's were coming in waves. Daniel, so close to asking her to marry, didn't even know her because he never met her mother.

But that clue and the "messed up" answering machine weren't enough to set off the flood of new memories for Raimy. She had to step into a roomful of people, certain the murder she was working was close to being solved, only to discover the remains belonged to one more victim of the Nightingale Killer: Julie Sullivan.

The question becomes: were all of those women who were murdered at the hands of the Nightingale Killer worth saving her dad? Was the loss of her mother worth it?

Raimy and Frank are detectives, and together they will work to solve the decades old mystery. The killer is still out there, but with as corrupt as the police force was when Frank was working in the '90s, there are bound to be clues the two of them can uncover given the inside information Raimy has as a result.

She also knows when her mom was targeted and how.

I'm a sucker for these stories, and this one hit all the right notes. Peyton List and Riley Smith do a wonderful job as father and daughter over the airwaves. It's not easy to convince us they're family when they aren't in the same room, but I bought it.

The characters are both very likable and their similar mindset helps cement their relationship. Burning messages into the ham radio, calling out baseball stats and burying gifts in the yard ensured they'd believe each other.

Young Raimy believing the unknown friend of her father on the ham radio so that she even delivered the radio to daddy in the hospital was pretty cool. Who can resist the idea they might be able to talk to themselves in the past? 

There's a lot to like on Frequency, and yet it's like nothing else on The CW. It's a procedural, even if it's quite emotional and stars CW regular List and a similarity with Legends of Tomorrow in that we're playing with time.

The thing that ties it all together? The music. I admit to being stuck in the '90s, but Wonderwall and the other songs that tugged at my heartstrings. The '90s are far enough gone that it's intriguing and close enough that most viewers are still familiar with the decade. 

But what about you? Did you watch? What do you think about the concept, the execution and the overall feeling of Frequency? Drop me a comment!!

Pilot Review

Editor Rating: 4.25 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.4 / 5.0 (36 Votes)

Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Critic's Choice Association, enjoys mentoring writers, cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.

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Frequency Season 1 Episode 1 Quotes

The ham radio's in the garage because I want it in the garage.


Frank: You're a cop? Get outta here. So you're telling me in 20 years I'm going to be on teh job with my daughter?
Raimy: No.
Frank: What? I'm retired?
Raimy: You're dead. You die tomorrow.