December 6th, 2008

cass groovy

catching up on SCC; spoilers through "Self Made Man"

I'm doing lots of business travel, and I tend to watch my TV online. It's been a busy couple of weeks, so thanks to Hulu I've just gotten caught up with TERMINATOR: THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES. It's really interesting to watch the show evolve. I've mentioned before that I flat-out hated the pilot, but when you start at the bottom there's nowhere to go but up. SCC still isn't a great show, but it's becoming interesting, and even its failures are instructive.

The biggest problem facing SCC is that its premise is not one that automatically suggests stories for a television series format, which means that it'd be all too easy for the show to be an unending rinse/lather/repeat of "find the Terminator, stomp the Terminator." The other big problem is that the robots-who-look human gimmick has been really well mined, and recently, by Ron Moore's reboot of BATTLESTAR GALACTICA. Tough act to follow. So it's understandable that the show has flailed about a bit, and is still trying to figure out what it does best. So far, the best bits have to do with time travel, and the psychological effects it has on people who employ it to run from the dystopian future to the past. (See the excellent guest role by Richard Schiff.) I'm looking forward to seeing what the show does with those things in the future.

That's not to say it's securely on the road to where it needs to go. One of the biggest problems is that the character dynamic is muddled. Collapse )