Thursday, January 17, 2019

Pilot Review: The Passage

The Passage (FOX)
Premiered January 14 at 9pm

I’ve been seeing the billboard advertisement for this show around Los Angeles for a while now, and something about that and the title made me think this really wasn’t going to be any good. It turns out, it’s much worse than I could have imagined. I’ll always remember actor Jamie McShane from his role on “Sons of Anarchy,” but now I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to forget his cringe-worthy “I don’t know, but I feel amaaaaaazing” when he first discovered the effects of his turning into a vampire or zombie or whatever it is that this show wants us to believe is happening. Starting with Amy declaring that this is the way the world ends doesn’t provide much hope, and I can’t decide if the show’s overarching premise or the dialogue and characters that filled this hour are worse. It always takes me a few minutes to recognize Mark-Paul Gosselaar, who I last watched regularly for a bit on “Franklin and Bash” and then encountered in the first few episodes of “Pitch.” He’s certainly not good here, with “If you touch her again, I’ll shoot you in the face” being one of his more regrettable lines. If an agent lost a child, they should never be assigned to unsubtly abduct a child who lost her parent to bring her in for an illicit government experiment. That’s far from the most glaring plot hole on this show, which also traps Henry Ian Cusick from “Lost” and Emmanuelle Chriqui from “Entourage” in lackluster roles. I’m very happy to try to forget all about it.

How will it work as a series? Amy is narrating from an unknown point, declaring the end of the world when obviously she goes on to survive in some form or another. High-concept shows like this often get bogged down with unending scenes of characters running from their fates, and every indication is that this one will follow suit and not get very far as it continues to drag on.
How long will it last? I can’t comprehend how this show boasts a 63 average on Metacritic since this truly was one of the worst pilots I’ve seen in a long time. I guess this is what a lot of people want to watch though, with its ratings proving to be pretty decent. I think it’s too early to suggest a second season, with viewership likely dropping off in the coming weeks, but this one will likely stay on the air much longer than it should.

Pilot grade: F-

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