Monday, September 10, 2007

Report on the 4400: "Tiny Machines"

Maybe it's just that I've watched 9 episodes of "Heroes" in the last two days. Maybe I'm just still in a bad mood over how poorly my fantasy team played this week. Either way, this episode of The 4400 just didn't grab me -- it just felt very cheesy to me.

And this is the only area that Heroes has The 4400 beat -- the budget. I've said several times, if The 4400 had Heroes' production budget and advertising budget, I feel like it could have been just as much of a hit as Heroes. Unfortunately, the show can look like a public-access production at times, despite the fantastic script and acting.

And this was especially evident during the climax of this episode. If you haven't seen it yet, basically the main story of the episode was Diana, Megan and Marco discussing how to fix a marked, and at the end Diana chases Marked Tom down. But, the locations for the chase (a cheesy hotel and a Wal-Mart knockoff) combined with poor editing of the scene (plenty of violations of the Axis of Action laws) just took me right out of the scene.

By the way, Diana shot Tom in the gut a couple of times. Shawn Farrell, come on down!

The rest of this episode, to me at least, was equally disappointing, only because it feels like the writers have let so many cats out of the bag that they know have to scramble to get all of them tied back together as quick as possible.

The awaited Shawn/Tess siege of Promise City lasted all of 3 minutes, with no resistance from Collier. In one swoop, Isabelle finally got with Kyle and abducted Collier in about 4 minutes total.

The saving grace of the episode was the scene in which Diana confronts Tom, calling him out as a Marked. Again, this is where the show was able to shine through some great acting, without any nice scenery or camera shots.

The only truly surprising part of the episode was regarding Shawn's Mom -- She took the shot? Really? What exactly are the writers going with this one? To kill off Shawn's Mom at the second-to-last episode? Is this something to do with Danny's power? I don't know.

But, long story short, this season began with such a bang and only picked up steam -- these last two episodes have felt just forced and predictable (I know, that's heresy). Hopefully we'll get a strong finale, especially since it may prove to be the SERIES finale.

So. Random Thoughts:

1) This show is horribly inaccessible to a casual viewer already -- now we're bringing in nanites? Can you get a geekier, more inaccessible topic?

2) Maybe that lack of accessibility is why we still haven't heard anything about this show getting renewed...

3) Have we just completely abandoned the whole Shawn running for City Council thing?

4) I feel ripped off by the lack of a badass "Tess rescuing Kevin" scene

5) I love it when Maia lies about visions for a tactical purpose

6) If Collier knows what The Marked are planning to do with his body -- wouldn't it be in Collier's character to kill himself before he loses control?

7) I wonder if Danny uses that "I have a very prominent Corpus Collossum" line to pick up women?

8) Why did Megan not just shoot Tom with the tranquilizer instead of talking?

9) I cannot picture a way that next week's finale can possibly be sufficiently satisfying

10) The more I think of Cassie and this White Light religion -- I was the first to question if they were actually the "good guys", but lately it's just looking more and more obvious that they are the "bad guys" -- How much of a great surprise would it be if it turns out they were always the "good guys" after all? Nobody is expecting it anymore!

No comments: