Friday, July 24, 2015

Wayward Pines, A Place to Die...

I found it difficult to get interested in the initial installment of The “Wayward Pines”.
It was a little too dark visually and I had trouble keeping up with the characters and their spidery networks of relationships. But when my husband seemed to become engrossed in something that appeared to be not much more than a mid-season filler with a cult-like following, I was intrigued. His cultish television viewing habits are more like “top 40” shows. The DVR is his second best friend. I digress.

After learning that M. Night Shyamalan was heavily involved in the production, I felt like I really couldn’t commit to “Wayward Pines”. Critical comparisons to Shyamalan’s “The Village” really left me cold. I found that movie disappointing in its predictability. A clever story, but not as cleverly veiled as “The Sixth Sense”. I am a Twin Peaks fan and it did not even come close!

Fast forward to the mid-way point of “Wayward Pines” and there is an irresistible buzz about how ‘good’ this show is and so, I became interested, but not really hooked. I made lunches while watching the show and did not miss anything.

Based on an apocalyptic horror trilogy by Blake Couch, it appears the entire television series covers all three books of “The Wayward Pines Series” in ten episodes. Although I admit I did not read the books, I admire the economy in trimming down three books into a ten episode television series. I also think that was a shortcoming which made it difficult to follow. If you’ve read the books, watching the series might be like a ‘Cliff’s Notes” version. Huge chunks of information are omitted, the general story is applied but not enough to make you care.

Recently, we accepted an invitation from the Philadelphia Film Society to attend the series finale to be screened in the Prince theater and a follow-up Q&A with Mr. Shyamalan. I thought it might interesting but soon felt like a trip to Center City after 8’oclock, on a ‘work night’  for a less than one hour television view and a brief fan based Q&A might not be worth the time. I was correct.

The ending was flat and disappointing. If it was supposed to be a cliff-hanger, it fell with a thud. If the FOX network has any designs on a second season, I hope the actors option for advance payment in the event of series cancellation. Maybe the big name actors that were killed off reckoned a revelation that the apocalyptic series was really an end of days saga.

Shyamalan’s next movie opening in September , “The Visit”, received noticeable commercial air time, and the most memorable commercial spot was a tease for the “X Files”, set to air after the NFL Championship game in January.
Fans of the book series might pine for more Wayward Pines, but I’m saving my heart for resurrecting Mulder and Scully. The truth is out there. I want to believe. I do.

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