Tuesday, May 01, 2012

The Second Review of Chloe King

Guest Blog by Mac Attack

Coming up on a year ago, Maggie Cat wrote this review of "The Nine Lives of Chloe King." Since the whole ten-episode run of the series is now available on Netflix streaming, I thought I might give it another go.

I agree with just about everything Maggie said, so I'm not going to re-hash it, I'm going to expand. First of all, if you are going to watch it, be aware that the special effects are horrendous enough to break you out of your suspension of disbelief. Their main attempt at special effects appears to be "cut away for a moment, cut back to show someone standing on something high up, and then have someone comment loudly how amazing watching her leap up was". The benefit is that it's cheap and simple. The detriment is that it's just cheap.

As Maggie said, they tried hard to make this the new Buffy. As anyone paying attention to the horrible failures of everything this season who tried to be the new Lost can tell you, there are some phenomena that you just can't duplicate. They gave it the old college try. She's got normal high school friends who sometimes help her with supernatural stuff and mystic mentors who occasionally try to help her be a bit normal. There are the training scenes and the tension of being romantically involved with a fellow warrior. And of course the multiple dying thing.

Buffy: Hey, I've died twice.

Chloe: Bitch, please.

In my opinion, that's the problem. The show doesn't try terribly hard to carve out its own identity, it just tries (and fails) to be Buffy again. I'm going to sound horribly elitist when I say this, but I feel Buffy fans, en masse, are justifiably proud of being rather cerebral. Almost no plot twist in the ten episode run of this series really surprised me.

What I did like about Chloe King, which Buffy didn't even start doing until their last season or so, was the backstory. The history of the Mai race, the cultural divides within their people and between them and the other races (including human), I found it fascinating. Even the "we're better than mere humans" Mai don't pretend that they are entirely blameless in starting the war with humanity.

In conclusion, I don't recommend you watch it. The only things I really liked about the show was the potential it had, the seeds it planted that I really believed would come to fruition if it had been given enough time. Instead, they must've known by the last episode that they were going to be cancelled, because I don't think I've ever seen so many main characters die at once.

Spoiler Alert?

There is some very vague talk that a TV movie could be in the works. It's possible this won't be the last review you see of Chloe King…

No comments: