Terra Nova...I tried, I really did. But.
Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Terra Nova. Great idea. I wanted to like it. I TRIED to like it. I marked it on my calendar. I eagerly awaited it. And then I saw it. And now I do not like it.

Mainly because of the horrible dialog and the ridiculous plot points. The concept is great, could have been fabulous. But..

For one, the dialog was wooden, and unbelievable. For instance, when Taylor is creeping on the lady doctor, and asks her why she came to TN when she could have had all sorts of luxuries, she answered with this speechy monlogue about a better world for her kids. Which is a no brainer, and needed to be established, but not like that. She's a doctor in a clinic. She's busy, she's in the trenches. She could have said, for instance, "You know what it's like there! And I don't want my kids to grow up like that. Pass that gauze."

And a whole lot of other cliched, boring statements that the actors tried valiantly to make interesting, but sadly, they just could not. Like: "That pretty girl was you." Yawn.

And certain plot points: For instance, Taylor would never (or should never) let the doctor, their only one I presume, but even so, a valuable person, risk herself and go OTG to look for her son. Just a stupid move, and higly unbelievable since he's supposed to be this hard-assed leader who's really good at ensuring the survival of their settlement.

And the Sixers,- they went to all the trouble to rescue that guy Carter, but when another of their number is made quick lunch for the "Carnos" (was there really a species we named that? Seems stupid, "carno." We get it. They eat meat)by being snatched head first from his armored vehicle (shades of Jurassic Park, only they used a toilet...hmmm), nobody ever mentions him again!

And I do not believe for one second that the girl who panicked and ran would not have ended up in a carno digestive track. That just destroyed the suspense thing for me right there (what there was left of it). Those boys are supposed to be DANGEROUS (another Jurassic Park rip-off: Smart velociraptors anyone?), and a good story of this nature would have the "guy who dies to prove the situation is serious," (thanks, Galaxy Quest). Not a "thank god nobody died" moment.

And at the end. Taylor DOESN'T tear the girl a new one after she got them all into that fix. He just stares dreamily off into the forest, looking for all the world like he's a little drunk.

And, and, and--ENOUGH of telling us that the cop and his son are alike! (Sorry. I didn't even bother to learn all their names.) Bam Bam Bam! Concept driven into our skulls!! Mission accomplished! Next time, though, SHOW, don't tell--the golden rule of good writing.

Special effects: excellent. Acting: good, but they had a lot to overcome. Direction: Crap, since even horrible scripts can be made to look better than they are by a clever director, and this one was not. All in all, a big, expensive, gleaming pile of...gose.

We are a little spoiled here. Joss Whedon wrote a good story, with realistic dialog and believable plot points. But gorram it! Everything should be written that way! (In a perfect world.)TN looked to me like some producers were sitting around trying to come up with a new fall blockbuster, but they had no inkling of what sci fi is all about. They seemed to think that if they dress something up like a sci fi epic, it'll BE a sci fi epic. Sorry. Doesn't work that way. You have to have a love of the genre, if only to understand what the @#$%!*$ you're doing!!

Well! I feel better now. Been steaming since Monday.


Monday, October 17, 2011 7:57 AM


HI everyone, I apologize for not answering sooner--for some reason I didn't get email notifications of your answers until EC's. Anyway, I've watched a couple since the pilot, and although the establishing isn't as heavy handed, I still am not in love here. Another thing (and yes, I can't help comparing with Whedon) is that none of the leads are unusual or special. They look like 21st century suburbanites. I don't get that they survived in a world going down the ecological tubes. I get they toook acting lessons in LA. Sigh...If only we could clone Joss.

Sunday, October 2, 2011 3:54 PM


I watched it last night and barring a couple of scenes, it was ok. The dialogue was what I expected, the special effects were decent. The only thing I really didn't like was where the two "Sixers" just explained what the story arc is going to be. That was clumsy and unneccesary. But apart from that, it was a decent enough pilot. You can't judge everything sci-fi show based on Whedon, otherwise you are going to have very little to watch.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011 4:12 PM


I agree with quite a bit of your analysis, but it was just the pilot and a lot of things had to be established. I'll give it another couple of episodes, but it's gonna have to be much better to keep me watching.

I am pretty sure that Elizabeth is not the only doctor, since the settlement has been there six years already. Also, carnosaur is not one specific species of dino, but rather a whole group of related species -


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