The Event: Episode 3 – In Which Things Start Unravelling

Three episodes in, “The Event” finds itself in a precarious position.  I want to enjoy the show and I want to love it, but I find myself caring less and less about it as time goes on.  When I say things are starting to “unravel,” I’m speaking of my own interest in “The Event” just as much as the plot of the show itself.

After the events (no pun intended) of last week’s episode, we have a better grasp of what’s happening.  Unfortunately, this doesn’t necessarily equate to caring about what’s happening.  My biggest complaint with the pilot was that the audience had no idea what it was watching, due to the episode’s convoluted and frenetic storytelling techniques.  The next two episodes have thankfully done away with that, allowing us to somewhat understand what the show is about, but, while the show’s technical element of storytelling has improved, there’s still a number of things “The Event” is missing to be truly good.  The biggest thing it’s missing is character development.  To be honest, the show just doesn’t have much of it.  Now, the characters are better than, say, “FlashForward” (where every single character either had no personality or an annoying personality), but there’s still a lot of room for improvement.  Sean Walker, the show’s main character and only redeeming personality, is still an interesting guy to watch, and he’s likable, thanks to his weekly heroic acts (seriously, he performs some heroic action every episode).  Unfortunately, we just don’t see a lot of development of his character.  Mostly, that’s due to the constant action of the show.  Again, the show handles action very well and invokes a good feeling of adrenaline, but, when you’re always running, you miss the quiet moments that can help define characters.  The rest of the cast have quiet moments, but they’re not well utilized.  Instead, they spend most of their time saying “What’s going on?!”  It’s understandable, but it gets old.

Despite my gripe at the show developing any interesting characters, my biggest complaint with this episode were the myriad inconsistencies.  Somehow, the bad guys are capable of doing whatever they want without any consequences.  Seriously, having a shootout at an FBI office?  Killing a police officer?  How does that not scream stupidity?  Better yet, how does all this go unnoticed?  Either the bad guys have phenomenal cosmic powers, or the good guys are idiots.  Additionally, how is that one officer that Sean treated still capable of running around and shooting people?  She had shrapnel sticking out of her shoulder in the beginning of the episode!  Yet, when she’s rescued, there’s no trip to the emergency room, and no one even asks her how she’s doing.  Instead, she just waltzes back to the office, with her shirt still covered in blood, and calmly asks what’s going on.  Yeah, because aspirin is that powerful.  Lastly, there’s the “twists” (or, more appropriately, the “twists that weren’t really twists”).  Of course, shows of this type are required to introduce plot twists every now and then.  However, all of the “twists” from this episode could’ve been seen from space.  They were blatantly obvious, and, worse, since you as the audience could see them coming, you’d think the characters would’ve seen it coming too (seriously, why doesn’t security check people better?).  But, of course, the characters have to make mistakes; otherwise, the good guys would figure everything out too fast.

“The Event” has had a bumpy run so far.  The first episode was convoluted and messy, leaving us wondering what the point of the show was.  The second episode was an improvement in storytelling, giving us some answers and a basic plot but not much else.  The third episode, however, highlighted the shortcomings of the series.  Once you understand the basic premise, you realize how implausible some of it is.  The worst aspect, however, has been present in all three episodes – lack of interesting character development.  Of course, three episodes is a short time frame to make such harsh judgments about a show (after all, the first few episodes of Fringe, one of my favorite TV shows, were less than exemplary).  I’m not swearing off the show yet.  However, there are definitely some issues to be concerned about.  Here’s hoping the writers improve “The Event” enough to keep me through the whole season.

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~ by digitallysmitten on October 5, 2010.

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