FlashForward Season 1, Episode 1 Review: First Glance - Featured

"We're running point on this because he had a vision we were running point on this?"

"So you're saying...what? Everyone's consciousness just jumped forward six months?" "Crazy as that sounds, yes."

Pretty much.

I am really, really excited for more episodes of FlashForward. It promises to combine some of my favorite television series story elements, including but not limited to, time limits, overarching mysteries, intertwining storylines, and time-travel paradox. (Yes, visions of the future do count as time-travel.) And, beyond all that, it also promises to be of good quality.

Heading up the FlashForward project are executive producers Brannon Braga of 24 and David S. Goyer of just about everything awesome, including the new generation of Batman movies. (If you don't know these guys' names already, it's time to educate yourself.) Between the two of them are pretty hefty credentials regarding intricate, twisted, and constantly surprising storylines, well-organized and well-paced storytelling, and carefully controlled suspense. And, if you didn't figure this out for yourself before the first commercial break, some truly excellent large-scale mayhem.

The cast is equally phenomenal. Joseph Fiennes stars as alcoholic FBI agent Mark Benford and is, of course, excellent as always. John Cho plays his partner, Demetri Noh, and makes a surprisingly convincing FBI agent. Also, he's funny. Hopefully that humor will endure despite his character's omg-am-I-dead? angst, because someone needs to balance out the brooding that Fiennes is sure to produce. Also part of the regular cast is Jack Davenport (who I personally prefer in his Pirates wig and costume, but oh well) who, if the preview of next week is any indication, is going to be central to the plot. He's got what looks like a very riveting scene coming up opposite Dominic Monaghan, who I'm looking forward to seeing in a non-nice/happy guy role. (Also appearing in this first episode: Seth Mc-freaking-Farlane!!!)

One episode down, and I don't feel like I really know much of anything about how this show is going to operate. There are things that hold lots of promise, like Demetri Noh's paradoxical lacking of a flashforward, and the Dominic Monaghan bit I don't know anything about yet. There are also some things I'm kind of skeptical about, like the Befords, who seem to have the weirdest damn marriage I have ever seen on television. And through it all, I'm hoping/guessing that the balance of constantly twisting story and spots of (admittedly cheap) humor like the FBI division director seeing himself in the bathroom will keep FlashForward entertaining.

(A slightly extended version of this review also available on my blog at http://meltedbrain.wordpress.com)



Sep 25, 2009 1:33PM EDT

Great review! I was impressed by the first episode and agree that there's a whole lot here to be excited about! I think it has just the right amount of similarity to Lost in having bizarre and fascinating mysteries, but with one big focus - in Lost's case, figuring out why they're on the island and getting off the island, and in FlashForward's case, figuring out why the blackouts happened and how they can stop or figure out that future they all saw.
I think it'll be really interesting as the FBI learns more and more from people's stories posted online and from other items that come up. This is such a solid cast though I'm not crazy about having crossover cast from Lost, but I think they'll carry it very well. I think the one thing I liked about this Pilot that I hope will continue that bugs a lot of people about Lost is keeping focus. That may change, but for now, it seems FlashForward will be all about its big mystery which can include plenty of side stories without getting as confusing and sidetracked as Lost has done with various big side stories.
Here's hoping for many more outstanding episodes!

Default avatar cat
Sep 25, 2009 3:39PM EDT

Very cool. Sort of a cross between lost/the 4400 in my opinion. Flash Forward is obviously banking on the success of lost, hell the name Flash Forward is even lifted directly from a narrative device lost uses, but hopefully that does not turn people off to this show. Yes there are glaring similarities, apparent as early as the very first scene of the show when the characters wake up with a catastrophe going on around them just like lost with the plane crash. However, this is not just a poor facsimile of lost, great plot, the pilot gave up about a billion unanswered questions and threads to follow which is only going to get better.
I have to completely disagree with the las thing kendra said though about lost. They have never lost focus, they said from the start that this wasn't just about people on an island, the show was just building into the overall plot of the show. With something as epic as lost's plot they probably would have lost a lot of viewers if they presented all of the time/space storylines from the start, and Flash Forward would have never have been made without their success. I dont know what big side tracks from the overall story your talking about, everything ties into the reason they are on the island.

Sep 27, 2009 7:18AM EDT

What an awesome show! At first (first 5 / 10 mins) I was like, this is not making sense....but then it was riveting and a great suspense filled episode.Congratulations for the continued Brit Invasion, being British, great to see my fellow countrymen doing really well ; - )

Default avatar cat
Sep 29, 2009 12:24PM EDT

It was quite good! it aired last night here in the UK - the last minute had me hooked!

Want to comment on this post? First, you must log in to your SideReel account!