I was a massive fan of the movie, so I was equal parts excited and apprehensive when I heard they were making a TV show based on the same idea. So far…I would say it’s watchable, but nothing special.
Created By: Graeme Manson, Josh Friedman
Starring: Jennifer Connelly, Daveed Diggs, Mickey Sumner
Genre: Drama, Sci Fi
Runtime: 1 Season, 10 Eps, 1 hr Each
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by: Pearl
My main issue with this series so far I think is that they have turned it into a murder mystery story. In a time where crime dramas are a dime a dozen, especially on Netflix, this is going to have to do something more than have an interesting setting to make it stand out from the very over crowded arena. And up till now, while it has an interesting story and some interesting characters, and I still love the world of the perpetually moving train, the actual murder mystery story they are dishing out is still pretty average.
Sure there is the additional elements of cannibalism and the despicable class structure, a murder mystery story always follows the sae set of rules and events always happen in a certain order. So they are going to have to pull something incredible out the bag, make the most of the interesting setting they have for their story, to avoid this just disappearing into the crowd.
Jennifer Connelly does a great job as Melanie, being both perfectly aloof and endlessly classy. And Daveed Diggs as Andre is exactly her opposite and I guess that’s the point. Just like Tilda Swinton and Chris Evans in the original film, there couldn’t be two main characters whose personalities were more different. And I look forward to seeing them interact more as the show progresses, see them make each other question what they think they know about life on board the train.
There are plenty of little nods back to the original film. I will admit to having a sense of nausea when seeing the protein blocks that the Tailies have to eat, will they follow suit and have Andre discover what it is they have been eating for years? The freezing of the arms as punishment another nod back to the film. I can’t wait to see how much more of the original material they bring forward, and on the same vein, I am loving watching all the new facets they are bringing to the world that we only got a glimpse of in the original film.
Episode one did a great job of setting everything up, and getting people acquainted with the world, especially if you haven’t seen this film, and didn’t already have knowledge of the back story. For me this is still the strongest of the three episodes, as it was most content rich. Episode 2 and 3 mostly focus on Andre trying to solve the murder, while throwing in the vast amounts of issues that are starting to go wrong on the train. These 2 episodes feel a lot more like a standard crime drama, so do not at all stand out in the same way as the first. I hope to see a little more of train life in the upcoming episodes, as this is more interesting to me then the mystery element.
Three episodes seems a little early to make a definitive decision on whether or not a series will be good, we aren’t even halfway through the season yet. But right now, I can only say that it is average and I am hoping to see it improve.