[TV Review] Falling Skies

While all the TV series I was watching were on winter hiatus, I tried watching a few new series (well, new to me, at least). Falling Skies was one of them.

falling-skies-season-4Based on:  It’s not based on a book, but I’ll post it here anyway. 😛
Original network: TNT
Series run: June 19, 2011 – ongoing
Status: Fifth and final season to air in Summer 2015

Synopsis: Falling Skies takes place in the chaotic aftermath of an alien attack that has left most of the world completely incapacitated. Tom Mason (Noah Wyle), a Boston history professor and the father of three sons, must put his extensive knowledge of military history to the test as second in command of a regiment of resistance fighters protecting a large group of civilian survivors. (from: press release)

WHAT DID I THINK OF THE SERIES?

I’ve heard of Falling Skies before, but I’ve been ignoring it because I’m not a big fan of aliens/post-apocalyptic sci-fi stuff. However, I got bored, and this seemed to have an interesting premise and it was only 10 episodes, so I checked it out… and Noah Wyle as the lead actor totally didn’t affect my decision to try watching it. Nope. Not at all. (Are my pants on fire yet?)

I didn’t expect to like this series, it being post-apocalyptic alien stuff and all, but I did. As usual, I began by watching episodes 1 to 3 to get a feel of it whether I should go forward or drop it. The next thing I know, the season 1 finale was over and I was ready to start with season 2.

Being that it’s about a war against invading aliens, it’s a bit violent as there’s a lot of gunfight and some hand-to-hand combat going on, and several deaths. There’s one scene where Tom is ambushed by a skitter (a kind of alien) and he manages to fight it off by beating it repeatedly with a pipe (or was it his gun? bare hands? I can’t quite remember). It made me cringe a bit.

I think what made me keep watching was that the story centered around the characters. It wasn’t too alien-y. At least season 1 wasn’t. It was more about the people–Tom Mason and his three sons, Dr. Glass (Moon Bloodgood), Capt. Weaver (Will Patton), and their regiment’s fight for survival. I kinda liked Pope (Colin Cunningham) too, even though you can’t really tell if he’s good or bad.

TNT's Falling Skies

What I liked most about the show are The Masons (Tom, Hal, Ben, and Matt) as well as Tom’s attempts to balance his role as father and leader. It’s nice to watch the relationship between him and his sons, and between the three brothers grow. His interactions with them were warm, heartfelt, and sincere. You can’t help but root for them. I also liked the moments when Tom spouts history references.

Moreover, I think Noah Wyle is a really good actor. I used to watch him occasionally in ER when I was in high school and I enjoyed The Librarian TV movies (which were a tad cheesy but fun, and now adapted as a series too). He portrays Tom very well. And surrounding Mr. Wyle in Falling Skies is a pretty solid cast. Maxim Knight as Matt is just adorable. I remember a scene where Tom and Matt were playing catch with lacrosse sticks. It was such a nice moment to see, however short it was.

I’m not touchy about spoilers, so I went ahead and read how the story progressed in it’s subsequent seasons (and to be emotionally ready for any character deaths, in case I liked that character). It appears the narrative got more and more complicated (and weird) with the aliens and all, including an alien/hybrid baby, but I’ll keep on watching and see how far I can go without getting too weirded out by the story line (I suspect I might bail when the alien baby appears, but we’ll see).

[Hazy thinks… if an alien invasion happens, I’d probably be one of the first few people to perish. My surivival skills are next to nothing. I’ll probably hide. Or help around at camp. I’d like to think I’ll be up in arms fighting the aliens and being badasss, but I’m not sure I have it in me. 😆 ]

TO WRAP IT UP… 

Mind you, I’ve only finished season 1 so far. I thought it was pretty good. It was actually much better than I expected. The story’s pace was just right, I think. I especially liked seeing Tom trying to balance his duties as father and leader, doing the best he can to protect his family and fellow survivors.

The ending was quite a cliffhanger, though. But that’s good, I guess, because it makes people curious about how the next chapter of the story would unfold. It certainly got me interested in watching season 2.

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