Friday, September 25, 2009

Flash Forward or Lost 2.0

I saw the premiere episode of Flash Forward last night. Actually, I half-watched, but I saw enough to get the gist of what was going on. And I must say, I liked what I saw.

I'm very much surprised to see Joseph Fiennes on network television. Truthfully, I thought that in itself might not bode well for the show. This is not to say that Joseph Fiennes is not a good actor, because he is. But there's a reason why big screen actors stay away from the small screen. Their agents.

I was gmail chatting with a friend last night and she said she was pleased to see that "Harold" was part of the cast. So am I. John Cho is slowly becoming one of my favorite actors. Actually, both he and Kumar (Kal Penn).

Both are showing their versatility in ways that I can't help but respect their craft. Just one thing I did notice, though: John Cho seemed to be overacting just a tad in his opening scene with Joseph Fiennes. Other than that he was badass fierce and cool as hell.

Very happy to see Penny Widmore (better known as Sonya Walger), too. You Lost fans know who I'm talking about. I don't know what it is about her lips, but if I ever meet her in person, I'm just going to run my fingers over her lips. I don't want to kiss them; I just want to stroke them with the tips of my fingers, as if I were blind and they were Braille.

Anyway, speaking of Lost, Flash Forward is trying to be Lost's little brother. Which isn't a bad thing. Unless your big brother is the star QB homecoming king valedictorian in a small town where the most important night of the week is Friday night because that's when the football games are played. Which Lost isn't quite that, but almost.

I'm not going to give anything away (at least now) about Flash Forward, other than Dominic Monaghan is slated to appear in future episodes and Alex Kingston (ER) and her lovely accent appeared last night (and hopefully often in the future), but if you're like me and you don't mind spoilers, check out the Wikipedia entry for the Flash Forward novel, which the series is based on. Then go buy it. I am.

Oh yeah, one last thing. It was also nice to see The Famous Jett Jackson (yeah, I watched Nickelodeon back in the day) and Courtney B. Vance. Should be interesting to see if they explore any sort of relationship between The Famous Jett Jackson and Alex Kingston, though, since they shared flash forwards. Talk about May December relationship. But the good kind.For both involved, if you ask me.

One last thing for real now: I really liked the subtle humor of the show with Courtney B. Vance recounting the "meeting" he saw in his "flash forward."

Talk about doing some business.


Wayne said...

Man, can't wait to watch it. It's been on the DVR since Thursday and calling my name. And while Lost may not be exactly how you described it, it still survived 6 seasons while the other long-term dramas that followed all went away quickly!

Here's to hoping that Flash Forward survives once Lost is over. Us sci-fi fans need something to fill the gaps.

six blocks east of mars said...

Hey, Wayne. It's been awhile. Still writing? Let me know what you're up to when you get a chance.

Yeah, Lost is the king of sci fi shows (though some might argue Battlestar Galactica), and by far my favorite tv show in a long, long time. Just having a little fun at its expense, especially considering Flash Forward is targeted at the Lost crowd.

Speaking of us sci-fi fans needing something to fill the gaps, did you see the V teasers yet? Could be good. Looking forward to that as well.

Wayne said...

Still writing! On the fourth revision on my manuscript and hoping to get it out to some agents by the end of October. Also, just sold a story to OG's Speculative Fiction (the train story, which you may recall reading quite a few months back) and looking forward to hearing when it'll finally see print.

How's your writing coming? I've missed your blog posts lately.

And I need to catch up on BG. Frankly, I've only seen the mini. It was great, but I'm not a big TV-on-DVD guy. Given a choice, I'd rather spend all those hours reading or writing. Unfortunately, I usually don't have a choice, and wind up working instead.

Wayne said...

6 blocks - watched the first episode and half of the second tonight. Your review was right on - the "meeting" was great. Wait till the second episode (if you haven't watched it yet), and you can see how that meeting concluded when the flashforward ended. They must've invited a couple high school sophomores in to the writers' room to brainstorm on that one. Or maybe the writers just have 10th grade senses of humor. I can appreciate that...

As for the first episode, they had a lot of moving pieces, so many that it was hard to become emotionally involved with the characters, but I trust Goyer to develop that depth as soon as possible.

A couple comments:
A sonogram at 10pm? Really? I'm hoping the writers are smart enough to explain this later. I know at least Guggenheim has kids. He should know doctors' hours.
SPOILER: The giving of the bracelet at the end was a little heavy-handed without seeing the reason why it was created that day, by that person. As it stood, it was little more than a plot device to show that the future they saw could actually come true. But the viewers already knew that. Otherwise, why present such blatant "foreshadowing" in the way of the flashforwards? As a fellow writer, how would you have handled that aspect of a first episode?
Following from that thought, for me, the reason I turned on the 2nd episode as soon as the first was over was the video from Tiger Stadium. I found that mystery element much more compelling than the bracelet scene.

Also, I finally caught the V trailer. Yes, that'll be DVR'd as well. Well done for casting the lovely Ms. Baccarin from one of the best ever, Firefly.

Thanks for the good review! Well stated!

six blocks east of mars said...


I did see the second episode, but I don't think I was watching as closely as you were. I missed the whole sonogram at 10 pm issue. I'm going to have to watch the second ep again to if there is any significance there.

I love how they're playing the humor so straight in a series with content so serious. How the "meeting" ended was just great. And you're right, talk about sophomoric humor, pun intended.

I agree with you about the bracelet, but I think that has been set up to be in direct contrast against John Cho's character and his death.

As viewers are being shown the future is slowly becoming true with Ralph Fiennes', John Cho's character is passively, and soon actively, will be working to change the future, hence the phone call at the end. As a writer, I like foreshadowing to be subtle. I just hope they're using the bracelet as a dupe of sorts.

The video from Tigers Stadium was a bit creepy. Almost chilling, even. Definitely unsettling.

You know, I really need to watch Firefly one of these days. I've heard nothing but good things about it.

As for my writing, back to the cowboy zombie story. Hoping to finish it this week. If I do, I'll send it over for you to have a look at, if you have time.

Anonymous said...

I would love to read your story, as always.

Regarding Firefly, that's worth a blog post on its own. In fact, I think we should set up a little experiment. I started watching on DVD from the first episode, not on tv. What you may not know (until you become steeped in Firefly lore) is that the first episode was not the first episode aired on television. Rather, the second episode was, on the demands of Fox. Joss Whedon believes that this was a mistake, but I will leave it to you to watch the series (only 13 episodes as I recall) and see what you think. For the experiment, I started with ep. 1 and could explain why Fox was right, you could start with ep. 2 and explain why Joss was right. Of course, maybe I'm getting ahead of myself here....

As for the friendship bracelet on flashforward, I would've liked to see why it was important to the daughter when she made it for him, such as she had been feeling a disconnect with him recently, or even as a result of something she saw (and realized she had to make it). And I would've liked to see those things before the end of the 1st episode. How could they have built it in without running long? I wouldn't have revealed the young doctor's suicide attempt yet. Instead, they could've shown him being called to work but not responding. Then, when he shows up to work after the FF, he's happy (unlike all others). His happiness in spite of all that trauma could've been another mystery leading to the reveal of the suicide attempt in a flashback. Granted, I've only watched through half of the second episode, but those are my thoughts. Looking forward to another ep this week though!

And send me that story! Can't wait!

six blocks east of mars said...

I think I'm going to take you up on your Firefly. All 13 episodes are on Side Reel. I'll post my thoughts on each episode after I watch.

I see what you mean about the bracelet. I think doing it your way - showing a reason why the bracelet was given - would have been too easy, and I think Flash Forward (I actually almost typed Lost there) wants to be needlessly complex like Lost.

I think it could have been built in with subtle flash forwards, like with Joseph Fiennes' character drinks of the flask, but I don't think FF wants to be that easy.