Amazing how quickly a series can find its footing. I trashed the pilot for "Haven" on just about every level, and had very few hopes for the series as a whole. But as I've come to the conclusion that Syfy shows rarely put their best foot forward in their pilots, I wanted to give "Haven" a chance. And I'm glad I did.
This episode presents a much darker show than the pilot suggested, and a far more interesting one. The premise behind the unusual nature of the town of Haven that was all but missing from the pilot has now been firmly established. The reason why there weren't more strange and unusual characters running around town in the pilot has now been given. Even the chemistry between Parker and Wournos has dramatically improved, now that his character has been given some darker shadings.
More than that, the introduction of Reverend Driscoll brings an interesting layer to the story. While his extreme religious fervor is a bit of a cliche, it does hew fairly close to classic Stephen King territory. And combined with the apparent cyclic emergence of individuals with strange and dangerous abilities, it speaks to a long history of war between those "afflicted" and those who see them as pawns of the devil.
If nothing else, I wonder if perhaps this should have been the event that was covered in the pilot. It does more to justify the unique nature of the town and its troubled history more than any amount of exposition in the first hour, and the overly-flippant introduction of Agent Parker is mitigated by her more serious demeanor during this crisis.
The question is: will the series continue to build on the strengths of this episode, or will it slip back into the abyss of the pilot? I'm a lot more interested in knowing the answer to that question now than I was a week ago.