Tuesday, September 09, 2008

The Sarah Connor Chronicles

Summer is officially over - we know this because the new seasons of all our favorite TV shows are starting. There's more Bones, House, Law and Order and Knight Rider to enjoy.

Last night saw the triumphant return of Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. I wrote about this inconsistent, but promising TV series last year and wasn't convinced it would be picked up the networks - fortunately I was wrong.

Read what I thought about last year's season.

The Sarah Connor Chronicles are based on the first two Terminator films, following Sarah Connor and her son, John, who is destined to lead mankind against psychotic machines following the nuclear apocalypse know as 'judgement day.'

Last season was a pretty promising start, but suffered from slightly self-important scripting (too much 'staring out thoughtfully into the distance') and too many action-movie clich├ęs (characters would do inexplicable and out-of-character things just to help shunt the lumbering plot along.)

If last night's season premiere was anything to go by, a lot of these inconsistencies have been ironed out. The whole show seems a lot more taut and the characters were, by and large, a lot more competent than they had been.

There were still a few dumb moments (like a 'liquid metal' Terminator disguising herself as a urinal) and Sarah Connor, played by British actress Lena Hedley, managed to crash two cars in as many commercial breaks, so really shouldn't be allowed to be the getaway driver any more.

But it was good - and the cast of characters we've grown to love have returned in force, with 'good' terminator (played by Firefly alumni Summer Glau) and tough, but principled FBI agent Richard T. Jones getting a bit more script to dig their teeth into.

There's even a ginger addition to the cast in the shape of Scottish songstress Shirley Manson - lead singer of Garbage. She plays a liquid metal T-1000 (the bad guy in Terminator 2) and seems to be the 'big bad' for the upcoming series, posing as the CEO of the company that will eventually create the 'self aware' Skynet program that destroys the world.

Now it's got a bit more stability to enjoy, I'm hoping this series will evolve into something really special. The premise is a solid one - with Sarah and John on the run from both the Terminators and the authorities, the show has a dizzying pace that keeps the audience on the edge of their seats.

Hopefully, they can ride this momentum all the way through this year's season.

Terminator: The Sarah Conner Chronicles is on Fox, 8pm, Mondays.

1 comment:

Reverse_Vampyr said...

Glad to see you liked the new episode, too. I thought it was pretty fun. A few little issues with it, as your next blog post point out, but otherwise very entertaining.

Not to mention, Lena Headey and Summer Glau aren't hard on the eyes, either!