Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Minority Report

There's no way the regular TV Sluts could make it through all these Fall Premieres by ourselves (even we're not THAT talented), so we're calling in all the troops. Here's a guest post from Mac Attack covering the new show, Minority Report, based on the movie of the same name. It's not a remake, but rather a continuation of the story. Is it worth your time? Read on to find out! --Maggie Cats 

 Minority Report: Somewhat aptly named. A show about precognition gives us a vision of a post-racial future. Main character is a woman of color, DC's mayor is a black man married to an Asian woman (who used to play professional football for the... wait for it... Washington Redclouds!). Even the semi-antagonistic office-political rival within the cops is FES from That 70's Show. Minority indeed. The only four white people with significant roles in the episode were all characters from the movie.

As someone who thinks "psychic" is a pretty terrible premise for a show, I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would. In part, they down-play the psychic element. The show focuses on Dash, one of the two twin male psychics, and establishes that he was, by far, the weakest of them. For whatever reason, he's the only one still interested in stopping murders; for the other two, their days of future crime are in the past. So, the heroes will have FAR less information than Tom Cruise did.

I do like pre-cog humor, which this episode was unfortunately somewhat light on. Two jokes stood out, and they were good, but not great. And they've already overused the "You're the pre-cog, you tell me" gag. A lot.

I think they knocked the tech out of the park. It was ubiquitous. It was central, or shown in the background, or as an accent, and just all over the place. Sometimes it was a plot point, sometimes it was just to give a sense of place. I worry that it's a breeding ground for 'forgotten phlebotinum'. Will an episode come where a crime could easily be prevented, if someone just used the device some random students are seen using in the background of episode 7?

Hopefully, no. One of the first scenes was... kinda the worst. They tried too hard, I feel, at the first crime scene. Their forensic technology seems impressive, but the woman using it looks like she's playing Dance Dance Revolution, or possibly that scene from the Toxic music video where Britney Spears dances past some laser beams while lip-syncing.

 Don't pretend you don't know what I mean.

I have seen the movie, and I have not read the book. My gut says that you don't have to have seen the movie to understand what's going on, and you definitely don't to enjoy it. They re-cap the salient details of the movie quickly right at the start and let you get into the show. There's one huge detail central to the movie that they leave out for a long time, until it's revealed at a dramatically appropriate moment; I feel like if I hadn't seen the movie, I would have enjoyed that aspect of the episode more. As it was, I spent the whole episode thinking, "But why aren't they mentioning..." and then when they finally did, instead of a big pay-off, I was like, oh well then. Okay.

All in all, I think this was a solid first episode. Better than I expected from a "based on". There are the central characters, who are plucky but seem unaware that they've stumbled upon a much bigger picture. There are at least three side-characters who obviously have their own agendas; are they nefarious, merely self-serving but otherwise decent people, or actually altruistic heroes?

Perhaps Dash could tell you.

Guest post by Mac Attack. Minority Report can be seen on Fox Mondays at 9e/8c, or on Hulu the following day

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