Shows that focus on an apocalypse of one sort or another are all the rage at the moment – literally in the case of the runaway hit show, The Walking Dead, which features zombies with the usual anger management issues – and I have become as enamoured of them like everyone else.
One in particular, Falling Skies, got me hook, line and sinker, and I am beyond excited – is that delirious? I am not sure – that it’s back on TV screens over the US summer. Hopefully that means it will wend its way to Australia very shortly after that, but I won’t hold my breath waiting for it to do so since (a) I like being alive, and (b) I don’t look good with blue skin (I’ll leave that to the Smurfs thank you.)
The show, which takes as its starting point the aftermath of an alien invasion and occupation of Earth which resulted in the death and enslavement of more than 90% of the population leaving a ragtag bunch of survivors to get by as best they can, with some leading an armed insurrection against the alien aggressors.
So far so much like all the other alien invasion shows and movies we have ever seen. What sets this show apart is that it focuses on one family in particular, led by ex-military historian and professor, Tom Mason (Noah Wylie), who with his three boys (one of whom he has to rescue from the aliens at one point) finds himself part of a group of people called the 2nd Mass. He is placed in that position by virtue of his knowledge of military tactics and campaigns, and is determined to do what he can to win back the planet from its unwelcome interlopers.
While some have argued that the show dwells too much on the lives of this band of survivors and those they encounter, at the expense of shoot-’em-up action against the aliens, I think that the focus on this small beleaguered group of people trying to forge some sort of existence in an utterly transformed world makes it compelling. Yes big action tableaus are always impressive, and I enjoy them as much as the next sci fi fan but this show’s decision to focus on what happens to people caught up in that action lends it an emotional resonance that many other shows and movies lack.
Season 2 picks up pretty much where season 1 left off with Tom Mason returning after willingly walking into an alien ship after they corner him, and ask to negotiate. There is consternation in the alien camp that the people of Earth are resisting them so defiantly – as one of the humans they have “harnessed” (which allows the aliens to control a person’s thoughts and actions, says “They didn’t expect….resistance”- and they want to understand why its occurring, and Tom, not seeing that he has much choice, agrees to talk to them.
There is some thought that the aliens have done something to him but regardless of that, the fight continues as this clip showing the first three minutes of the first episode of season 2 shows quite clearly.
It looks like it’s going to be a hell of a second season.