Under the Dome Season 1 Review “Exigent Circumstances”

Good actors can find ways to elevate mediocre material. Great actors can take that mediocre material and make it somewhat passable. What no actor can do is take bad material and turn it into something competent. When a show is creatively bereft, even the most competent actors can look like they just dropped in from outer space. This summer, no where is it more evident than on Under the Dome.

Though there are a few competent actors in the cast, no one is suffering more from the creative diddling than Dean Norris. It’s quite a stark contrast from watching him on Breaking Bad 24 hours before an episode of Under the Dome. It’s definitely not fair to compare the two shows creatively, but Breaking Bad shows what Norris can do with good material, while Under the Dome shows his limitations when handling poor material. One of the good things about Big Jim Rennie in the early going was his moral ambiguity. The last few episodes have watched the ambiguity go up in flames. What has been left behind is the all-powerful cackling villain. He scowls. He lowers his face. He harasses young women, he shoots other young women. The entire demeanor of the character has changed. It’s important to note that Norris is doing all that he can with the material. There just isn’t anything there but the mustache-twirling villain. It’s a complete waste of his talents.




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