Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Revolution 1.01: "Pilot"

“Monroe thinks your Dad knew something, something important. And he thinks your Dad told me, so I must know it, too. Why the lights went out…maybe how to turn them back on.”
- Miles

I have been waiting for Revolution since we got the very first, if somewhat vague, description that it had been picked up during pilot season. I will be blogging the first half of the season and Jen will be picking up after winter hiatus.

We begin our journey into the latest wacky world of JJ Abrams in Chicago. Everything seems normal with two kids busy watching TV and playing on a tablet while their mom is on the phone. Her husband, Ben Matheson gets home and looks pretty freaked out. He tells her to get the water going and that they don’t have much time. Before they know what’s happening, all the electricity in the entire world just shuts off. We get a glimpse of Miles, Ben’s brother in South Carolina and get an interesting shot of all the cars on the highway going dead. They also do a shot of a plane crashing in the distance which reminded me a little bit of FlashForward.

We jump 15 years into the future to find the world has changed. Society has reverted back to farming and living on small villages and towns. Governments have fallen and militias have risen as the new law and order. We are back with Ben and his two kids, Danny and Charlie. It seems during the time jump a lot of people died, including Charlie’s mom (played by Lost alum Elizabeth Mitchell). Charlie and Danny are supposedly out hunting but they’ve happened upon an old trailer. Charlie has a flashback to emptying out the freezer after the black out and getting to eat tubs of ice cream. Kid’s dream I’m sure. Unfortunately, Danny opens a cupboard and the dust aggravates his asthma.

Charlie takes off after arguing with her dad and misses the big showdown when the militia arrives, looking for Ben. He is going to go with them (they want him and his brother Miles) but Danny and the other townsfolk get involved. It ends with Danny being taken and a lot of people dying. Ben is barely hanging on when Charlie gets back. He has enough left in him to tell Charlie where to find Miles and instructs her that Miles can rescue Danny. So she, Aaron (a friend of Ben’s who has a secret flash drive) and Maggie (Ben’s girlfriend and the town doctor) head off to Chicago in search of their savior.

Things aren’t looking so hot for Danny. The militia leader has sent word back to the General that he had to take Danny instead of Ben. Which means one or both of them could end up with their head on a stick. Danny is cuffed to a pipe in the wagon and that night, manages to get the screw out and escape. Meanwhile, Charlie and company are camped near a waterfall where she meets Nate. He’s kind of cute but Charlie doesn’t really know what to make of him. Frankly, I wouldn’t trust a random cute guy in the woods when there are tons of stories about bandits killing people. The gang camps out in an old airplane when Aaron says it should be safe. He used to own one (he worked for Google). Unfortunately, they are set upon by bandits, including one former Power Ranger. I was quite impressed I managed to recognize him. Maggie manages to take out two of the baddies (poisoning one and strangling the other). Charlie is trying to fight off the third when Nate shows up and saves her. Maybe he’s not such a bad guy to have around. I have to say I think the story is moving just a tad slowly at this point. Then again, stories that involve a lot of traveling through the woods tend to feel that way (Harry Potter 7 anyone?).

Maggie is highly suspicious of Nate. She doesn’t think they can trust him but Charlie isn’t interested in her opinion. They get to Chicago and we learn another fun factoid about Aaron, he was married. I have to say, I kind of like him. They find Miles but he’ll only talk to Charlie. We get some exposition where he explains why Monroe wants him. He’s not sure he’s even going to help because Danny is just bait to lure him in. He doesn’t confirm or deny if he knows why the power shut off or how to turn it back on. But he is sure that if Monroe figures out how to get the power back, things will get very bad. Meanwhile, Danny had yet another asthma attack while escaping and wakes up to find a woman pointing a weapon at him. But she seems okay. She is a little worried that Danny may have led the soldiers to her.

Charlie should have listened to Maggie because it turns out Nate is with the militia. He takes off and Miles gets all cranky that he’ll be back with reinforcements. He tells Charlie and company to get out and leave him to drink himself to death in peace. Things aren’t looking so great for Danny either. The militia leader shows up at the woman’s house and she lets him take Danny away. I was kind of hoping she’d be an ally. As predicted, Nate returns with back up. And thus begins the awesome fight sequence that justifies Miles as “good at killing”. He’s pretty badass with a sword. I have to say, I’ve seen the Twilight movies (for the shirtless hot guys) and I never realized just how attractive Billy Burke actually is. I’m going to enjoy watching him every week. As the fighting continues, Charlie is trying and failing to fight of a soldier when Nate comes to the rescue. He takes off before Aaron and Maggie can see what he’s done though.

As Maggie stitches up Miles’ only wound from the fight, he agrees to go with them. Charlie is pretty excited. We get another flashback as to who General Monroe is. It turns out to be the guy who was in the car with Miles the night the power shut off. Very interesting twist, I must say. It explains the militia mark on Nate’s arm, though. Meanwhile, the woman who let Danny get taken, sneaks up to the attic, activates the same device Ben gave Aaron and it starts up a computer, much like the one in the Hatch on Lost (we had to have some kind of Easter Egg on an Abrams show) and tells someone that the militia was there but they didn’t find “it”. I’ll be very interested going forward to know what “it” is.

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