Thursday, June 25, 2020

What I’m Watching: The Twilight Zone (Season Premiere)

The Twilight Zone: Season 2, Episode 1 “Meet in the Middle” (B+)

I really liked the first few episodes of this revival last season, and I’m ready to dive deep on the show now that all of its second series is being released on one day rather than a week at a time. This opening installment was immediately riveting, and I was particularly impressed because the hardest part of all these stories is figuring out a way for them to end. There wasn’t necessarily going to be an explanation for how Phil and Annie were connected, but the resolution of that bond was much more important. I’ve been a fan of Jimmi Simpson since his work in the pilot for “Virtuality” that never became a series, and he’s been featured much more prominently recently on “Westworld” and “Perpetual Grace, LTD.” He possesses exactly the right demeanor to play this kind of character, so tuned in to what’s happening in his own head and uninterested in what’s going on in the world around him. Kristen Lehman from “The Killing” and “Motive” was his therapist, and though I was sure Annie was played by Maria Dizzia every time I heard her voice, I now see that it was Gillian Jacobs from “Community.” Annie being married was a hurdle that was overcome when they just had to be together, and I wasn’t expecting her to be attacked by someone when she was on the train to meet him. The lengths he went to in order to protect her were extreme, and hearing her admit to him as he was being taken away in the police car that she had used him to break free of her marriage was a chilling and very effective finish. I’m ready for more immersive trips into the twilight zone.

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