Thursday, 28 October 2010

'THE EVENT' 1.6 - "Loyalty"

Thursday, 28 October 2010

"Loyalty" appeared to commence The Event's "second cycle" after last week's mini-climax, suggesting the show will be hitting regular turning points. I'm increasingly likening The Event to 24, which also divided its seasons into "batches", accumulating into a full season's story. That feels like the correct direction to take for this series, as The Event doesn't have much depth of characterisation, so it might as well focus on delivering 5-6 episode waves of action, where the characters are gradually solving a deeper mystery.

There were three main storylines in play this week: Sean (Jason Ritter) told Leila (Sarah Roemer) about her mother's murder and sister's kidnapping, agreeing to take her back home to look for clues, where they met investigative reporter (Paula Malcomson), who revealed Leila's father discovered a secret facility called Inostranka in Alaska; the President's (Blair Underwood) team tracked Sophia's (Laura Innes) movements on the city's subway, unaware she's receiving help from CIA Agent Lee (Ian Anthony Dale) in avoiding detection, so Thomas (Clifton Collins Jr.) can reach her without blowing his cover; and flashbacks to 1954 revealed Lee was once in love with a beautiful woman, whom he was forced to leave in order to maintain his cover with Thomas.

The flashbacks were handled well for once -- actually shedding light on Lee's character and making him more sympathetic, while showing us the downside of slow-aging aliens falling in love with humans, when Lee was reacquainted with an elderly Val at the turn-of-the-millennium, 50 years after he left her without a word of explanation. It was an angle I expected The Event to explore, and while it deserved more screentime to sell it, I thought it worked as something character-based to break up the action. Dale was actually rather good in the bedside scene where he atoned for his actions to his aged sweetheart. It all showed that Lee's a benevolent man, as Sophia appears to be (despite being detained for decades!), which makes you wonder what they see in Thomas, who comes across as a hardhearted villain.

Now we know the Buchanan's were targeted because Leila's father discovered the Inostranka facility, which appears to be situated in an area of UFO activity, according to clippings in a scrapbook. That seems to suggest Carter (D.B Sweeney) and Vicky acted on behalf of Inostranka officials, who were against the President releasing the aliens they'd detained indefinitely, and hired them to kill two birds with one stone: assassinating the President using a plane piloted by the meddling Michael Buchanan. I guess that makes sense, if that's the case.

Overall, "Loyalty" was another enjoyable and reasonable episode, with a few standout sequences: the way in which Sophia escaped detection by having Lee generate multiple targets using spiked water at a coffee shop; and the visually stunning sequence towards the end, with Thomas escaping with Sophia as his hideout imploded with the appearance of another portal. I wonder if the rubble will be transported to Arizona, as the plane was...

How are you enjoying The Event so far? Is it taking shape, or becoming a bore?

  • My pet theory that the "aliens" are humans from the future appears to have smashed, as Lee mentions the lack of water where his people come from. Unless this was an intentional red herring (and Lee just didn't live near the coast), it suggests the planet the aliens come from doesn't have H20. So it can't be a future Earth, surely. But really, aliens that are only 2% different to human physiology, consequently comprised of water, come from a planet with no water? Ridiculous. So does that mean the aliens only assumed human appearance after their crash-landing?
  • I'm guessing this portal technology is what Thomas has been working on, as a means for his people to return home. As of right now, I'm wondering why the government don't just help these aliens get back home, seeing as how the ones who escaped detention in the '40s have done nothing but seek a way off the planet.
  • Paula Malcomson will be familiar to fans of Syfy's Caprica, where she played Amanda Graystone.
WRITERS: Leyani Diaz & Vanessa Rojas
DIRECTOR: Jonas Pate
GUEST CAST: Clifton Collins Jr., Paula Malcomsen, Julia Campbell, Holland Roden & Anna Clark
TRANSMISSION: 25 October 2010, NBC, 9/8c