There is a lot of things you might have against “The Event”, NBC’s replacement for Heroes (and the self-proclaimed spiritual successor to LOST). It’s very complicated, it follows a set of rules unknown to the viewer and it scrambles the plot around just for the sake of it. Every character seems to know more than you. Sounds like a recipe for disaster. But for some reason, after about twenty minutes, I got sucked into it and was on the edge of my seat.
Nobody knows what “The Event” is. After having watched the Pilot, you can guess that it might involve aliens or at least some paranormal activities. But what this Event is, or when it is… nobody knows. Is the “present time” described in the Pilot (e.g. everything happening in the airplane – because every good pilot starts with an airplane) the Event? We don’t know – and frankly, it didn’t really concern me.
It’s hard to divulge anything about the story – mainly because the story didn’t really open up to us. It seems to revolve around a man named Sean, who finds himself enjoying a holiday with his girlfriend at one point and is hijacking a plane a week later. Sean’s story (and those of the other characters) seems to be put in a bag and shaken up: everything is told in achronological order.
I love this – even if the show seems to be throwing a tantrum for the sake of throwing one. There’s no real reason (yet) as to why the story is told this way. It might present itself at a later time, though. What it effectively does is create a horror scenario, a nightmare. Because you are missing pieces of the puzzle, certain scenes have an almost dreamlike quality. Who hasn’t dreamt of returning to their room, only to find out their room has gone? It’s these kind of tricks this pilot lives on – tricks that might get old over time, as we find out more and more of the story behind the Event. But hey, that’s the future, babe.
It’s hard to say anything about this Pilot. Is it a character story? Maybe. Is it a conspiracy story? Probably. So many questions and no answers. But I see that as a good thing. This Pilot felt so refreshing and new that it instantly had me hooked.
But in the long term? It remains to be seen. There was no exceptional cinematography going on. It was mostly tricks, like a fun house. How many tricks do they have up their sleeves? Can they really expect me to watch an entire season – let alone a series – of people knowing more than I do? Or will the multiple perspectives of the same events get me more knowledge over time?
It’s hard to say. But I’m sticking with this one for the time being.