Sunday, January 19, 2014

Pilot Review: Bitten

Bitten (Syfy)
Premiered January 13 at 9pm

There’s nothing like a classic werewolf show. Except that it’s exactly what one might expect from a show about a werewolf, which I suppose is a good thing if that kind of fare appeals. The first episode of this series, which is airing almost simultaneously two nights earlier in Canada on Space, felt a whole lot like any supernatural fish-out-of-water story, and did its best to infuse as much sex appeal and minor tweaks to make it seem vital and alluring. I was interested most because of star Laura Vandervoort, who managed to enliven both “Smallville” during her stint as cousin Supergirl and “V” as the daughter of the evil alien lizard queen. I had hoped that Vandervoort’s casting would mean that this show might have some redeeming factors, but that’s not the case. Her status as the “world’s only female werewolf,” per the series description, doesn’t make her seem all that special, and this episode layers on the many other wolves who reunite to investigate the “mutt” who is maiming and killing humans and threatening to expose them. Dating her best friend’s brother, who seems eternally curious about her many newfound relatives, is destined to be a bad idea. Whatever it was that made her leave home and move somewhere new is sure not to be quite as fascinating or monumental as the show is making it out to be. I could try for plenty of werewolf puns, but I’ll leave it at describing this show as lacking in any much-needed originality.

How will it work as a series? Elena has two worlds to navigate, her new life with her friends and boyfriend, and her home life with the rest of the wolves. How closely her new personal life will converge with that of the “mutt” remains to be seen, but I imagine that this show will mix that mythology with some weekly drama that is sure not to be nearly as substantial.
How long will it last? Airing simultaneously on tow different networks in two different countries suggests this show could do well even if it isn't a smash on both. Speaking to the American side, I think Syfy might go for it and give this show another season, but it's too early to tell.

Pilot grade: C-

No comments: