Review: The Event

Blair underwood plays the President.
Blair Underwood plays the President.

(SPOILER ALERT: This review includes the pilot episode’s story line)

It was one of the most anticipated Fall premieres for this season and NBC’s summer hype seemed to pay off. The event premiered to a 7.5/11 overnight metered market household rating and actually grew over the hour. What does this mean? They did well, but can they sustain?

With speculation swirling all summer about what “The Event” would actually be about, it wasn’t until a couple of weeks ago that word leaked out it would be about disclosure and alien life on this planet. However in the midst of hard bodies and beautiful faces, typical network casting, it really left you without many concrete conclusions.

From the beginning the show was a little hard to follow. I am sure it was intended to be that way. Jumping back and forth in time with parallel story lines, it keeps you paying attention while building to its revealing climax.

Usually when a show debuts character development is the main focus, in order to get people personally involved with the characters so that they felt a connection. Jason Ritter, actor John Ritter’s son, plays “Sean Walker”. A striking young man who at one minute is ready to propose to Sarah Roemer, whose character is “Lelia Buchanan” then we cut to him in an airplane with a gun trying to break into the cockpit to try to stop the pilot from some terrible incident that is about to happen. Blair Underwood plays “Elias Martinez” the president of the United States. I am sure it is no coincidence that he is modeled after President Obama. Martinez is shown standing up to the head of the CIA asking “how come I didn’t know about this?” After many beautiful locations and plot turns the show comes to a conclusion with the plane that “Sean Walker” is trying to divert headed right for the president. Suddenly the plane vanishes within a cloud of electric looking energy. Laura Innes, who plays “Sophia Maguire” from ER fame, turns to the president and says something to the effect that the “they saved us.” President Martinez then says “who are they” and Sophia responds (the line to bring you back next week) “Mr. President, I haven’t told you everything.”

The President and Sophia see the plane.

A couple of other plot twists were interesting as well. Lelia, Sean Walkers girlfriend suddenly turns up missing only to find out that his life, as he knew it, has suddenly been erased.

Whether this show will keep my attention through the entire season is still up in the air. I will watch next week there is no doubt. As far as if this show is preparing the public for some sort if disclosure, well that is certainly something we hope for. If it is, then I am hoping that they continue to grow their audience to bring more viewers. Hawaii Five-O, the remake of the old police drama, brought home a 7.4/12 in the Nielson ratings and the CBS show “Two and a Half Men” gathered a 9.5/14 rating. This shows that people still enjoy big action cop shows and cheesy comedies. My hopes are that “The Event” will be captivating enough to wake a few people up and ask questions.

Update: Week 2 of The Event

So now we know it is about aliens. But what is “The Event?” After watching the second installment of NBC’s Monday night series “The Event”, I am still not convinced that the show will keep me engaged. Apparently other viewers didn’t even make it to week two as the overnight ratings dipped 19% from last week.

This week picked up where last week left off. The jet that disappeared at the end of week 1 reappears to crash land in the Arizona dessert at the start of week 2. We do find out what happened to “Sean Walker’s” girlfriend, she apparently murdered under auspicious circumstances, and the president lets on that he was about to reveal the presence of extraterrestrial life.

How some of these scenes unfolded were pretty cheesy. My feeling is that the producer’s intent is not to make the smaller details believable as much as pushing the story forward. There were more time jumps back and forth, but not as much as in the first episode.

The acting seemed weak in this airing. That may be due to the scenes being less palatable. The way “Sean Walker” escaped from the crash scene and then from the hospital was really hokey.

Some of the more compelling elements were the reveals about the aliens themselves. Scientific references to DNA – the aliens have a 1% difference in their DNA and they age much slower than humans – made it thought provoking enough for me to stay engaged.

“The Event” itself now suggests it could be about the aliens’ agenda. It is obvious they are planning something. What that is, we do not know yet. However it does not appear to be friendly. It is revealed that they infiltrated the general population. One of them, “Simon Lee,” is a CIA agent.  The show ends back where it started, at the crash scene where the rest of the passengers are dead spread across the dessert, not victims of the crash, but by the aliens.

According to information on IMDB, the “Internet Movie Database” it looks as if there are only eight episodes scheduled for air. November is one of the largest Nielsen ratings months and if the ratings continue to decrease as they did this week, eight episodes are all we may see.

The alien drama is once again holding my opinion captive until after next week’s broadcast. I will say that if after next week they have nothing more to offer this human, I will plan my escape for more earthly viewing.

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