We’re not digging this show right now. It’s too shallow and immature. It’s like every generic family action movie, except the whole family can’t watch it, because of content issues. We’re not sure who this is aimed at. We’re not attached to any of the character, and, worst of all, there is no real emotion involved in watching this show. Not fear, excitement, humor, sadness, joy. Nothing. There was almost curiosity last week with Taylor’s missing son and the equation, but that wasn’t touched upon this week. The show is centered on a family, but the family brings no believable interactions or power to the geeky premise.
A mystery alone can’t carry a show. Who is the audience for this? Teenage boys? Maybe. But it might be too sweet for them. This show is trying to please everyone, and we don’t think it’s pleasing anyone overmuch. This is a show that needs to figuring out what sort of reaction it wants from us, because light, fun, cute sci-fi that hardly makes sense isn’t going to elicit a strong reaction from anyone. This show desperately needs to take a risk, make someone unlikeable, shake things up, and get scarier. We are very disappointed and hope it improves. We were rooting for this one, because we are nerds.
Spoilers start here.
Some of Terra Nova’s men get a flat tire at night and then they get killed by little dinosaurs offscreen. Then we see the Shannon family, in the daytime, having a nice time in Terra Nova, settling in. Jim and Elizabeth start taking their clothes off (well, Jim’s shirt anyway), stand close to each other, and look at each other hungrily, but in a rated-G kind of way, so it creeped us out. Then a dinosaur screeches and ruins their good time. We would start to get annoyed with the dinos at this point. Jim goes out to scare the dino off and comes back to find Zoe in bed with her mom. We have already been annoyed with Zoe, who ruins everything but cannot be the target of wrath because she’s little.
Josh seems to have accepted his dad now. Elizabeth meets another science geek, Malcolm, and he’s an ex-boyfriend from college who still likes her! Dramaaaaa. Not really. Jim just calls Dr. Malcolm out for liking his wife and wishing Jim were still in prison, choking to death. Later, Jim and Elizabeth try to do it again and dinos screech. Jim and Josh go out to scare the dinos off, but the little flying things attack! One bites Jim’s hand. Nothing else. But these are the same things that killed the Terra Nova men.
Malcolm figures out that Terra Nova was built on these pterosaurs’ breeding ground, and now they want it back. Offscreen, Jim catches a couple of the pterosaurs so that his geeky wife and her possible boy toy could figure out how to recreate their pheromones and lure them to a new place to breed. Once they make the formula, Jim and Taylor take it and lure the birds away. We don’t see this either. We don’t see any of the action. It’s like an old sitcom where they can’t show the kids fight, just talk about the aftermath. We guess this is a way to save money, and after the pilot, they need to. But without dino action, what’s the point of this show?
Elizabeth and Jim finally get to do it. No one cares. The only plot-advancing thing we learn (that doesn’t involve romance) is that the Sixers have a mole in Terra Nova. Well, of course they do. That plot is a freebie, show. Every show has to have a mole at one time. 24 had, like, a thousand. Also, that was heavily implied in the pilot. Taylor tasked Jim with finding the mole with his “cop nose.”
Funniest lines this week? “Dad, how do you know if a guy likes you?” “You can’t. He doesn’t. You’re 16.”
Episode grade: C-
Episode grade: C-