Monday, September 27, 2010

HouseTV Review: The Event "Pilot"

After months of waiting, it finally arrives. But after all of the wait and the buildup, did the new show The Event live up to the hype. The answer for now will have to be, "So far, so good."

It's hard to say what the new show has going on. Part of that is not giving away details that might spoil the program in question. But the rest is tied up in the storytelling of the first episode, which bounces back and forth between present and past storylines.

The main storylines revolve around a small handful of characters, but focus primarily on a young man named Sean Walker (Jason Ritter), who gets dragged into a conspiracy that somehow involves an enigmatic woman named Sofia (Laura Innes) and a cover up so elusive that it not even the President of the United States (Blair Underwood) is aware of it at first.

It is here that the episode shows both its strength and its weakness. The sporadic back and forth of the storytelling between the lead characters does work. The unraveling of the initial mysteries behind "The Event " are strengthened by the jerky, but well structured web of a timeline that is created here. But despite enjoying the episode as a whole, I still feel like continuing that pacing for an entire season would be a mistake. It made for a nice hook, but it's not something I'd like to see every week.

What swings the episode into higher favor is the ending, which doesn't answer the big question but does answer a smaller one. It stands to reason that most viewers figured that they may not find out what exactly "The Event" is by the end of the first episode. But the pilot makes a strong point of dancing around the question of what type of event it even is. it isn't until the final moments of the episode that part of that question is answered, along with the question of whether or not there will a scifi element to the show.

Of course, the greatest mystery of the show remains unrevealed. And it is on that note that I've taken a positive, but "wait and see" approach to how I think the show will do. It's all well and good form a small handful of unanswered questions that lead to more questions. But some shows, this one in particular I feel, needs the strength that establishing a clear foundation will bring. I sincerely hope they don't intend to drag out some of the larger mystery points for the entire season, because I think they will lose viewers and their fanbase by doing so.

So if you haven't checked out the show yet, give it a test drive. It might actually be better to pick it up from this week, as apparently this week's episode answers at least a few of the questions presented last week.

Rating: 7.5/10 (It's a solid start, perhaps better or worse depending on how the show continues on.)

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