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04 April 2009 @ 08:49 pm
Primeval 3.02  
James Moran wrote my favourite episode of the last Doctor Who season. I thought Fires of Pompeii was intelligent and fun and handled the characters well and the issues with maturity.

I have also frequently complained that Primeval's Monster of the Week plots are pedestrian and dull.

So I was pleased that he decided to approach this week's episode as a haunted house story rather than the more usual, "ooh! look! monster! hunt! kill!" type stuff. In fact for the first twenty minutes or so I thought we were in for a real winner. There was a nice atmosphere, some good character work, a fun set-up and monster and then... and then... I started getting a bit bored. Abby is left alone at the house "oh no!". Connor is left alone at the house "oh no!". Abby is left alone at the house "oh no!". Once again the direction was really not helping the script. After the first ten minutes they'd used up all the tricks of creepy sounds and billowing curtains and were forced to return to them again and again, there was no sense of the tension ratcheting up which this type of story-telling really needs.

That said, I liked Danny. I liked Becker more than last week. I thought the early scenes in the haunted house with Abby, Connor and Jenny were great. It's just a shame the episode seemed to lose momentum somewhere around the halfway mark.

In other news, I was sorry Cutter wasn't in more of it (looks like Douglas Henshall was already on short hours by this point).
 
 
 
lukadreaming: Ryan shoutinglukadreaming on April 4th, 2009 08:11 pm (UTC)
I was massively disappointed. It reminded me of a low-budget Scooby Doo rip-off *g*. If you're going to do the hoary old haunted house line, at least do it well. And leaving the soldiers back at the ARC just made me grind my teeth.

It felt to me like they were gradually writing DH out. And it struck me that Jenny, Abby and Connor aren't strong enough to carry an ep themselves.

The jury is still out on Danny *g*.
louisedennis: primevallouisedennis on April 4th, 2009 08:54 pm (UTC)
I didn't mind them going off on their own, they had every reason to suppose there was no creature and no anomaly, they were just taking a peak at the lie of the land. The moment they had real reason to think there was something there, now, they called reinforcements. Mind you, they fluffed the explanation of the rationale but that's not quite the same thing. I objected far less to their absence than I did last week.

I won't pretend it didn't lose its way halfway through though and compound that with a number of the trivial errors to which Primeval is prone such as "how not to treat a serious head injury".
telperion_15: Conclusive Prooftelperion_15 on April 4th, 2009 08:11 pm (UTC)
Generally, I liked the ep - although as you say, the reptition of certain plot points did start to get annoying after a while. But I'm pleased to see that Jenny, Connor and Abby had some good interection, since we're probably going to be seeing more of these three together in the coming weeks...
louisedennis: primevallouisedennis on April 4th, 2009 08:54 pm (UTC)
Agreed.

They had too much time for what plot they had, something Primeval is often guilty of but usually covers better than this.
Susan: abby and rex 2lil_shepherd on April 4th, 2009 08:12 pm (UTC)
I hated Fires of Pompeii - mainly because I know far more about the Romans of that period than the writer did.

I hated this episode - I think it is probably the worst episode of Primeval yet made. Well, I can't think of a worse one. I hate all these bloody film references, and I really, really disliked the fact that no-one (with the honourable exception of Becker) acted with any sense at all.
fredbassettfredbassett on April 4th, 2009 08:30 pm (UTC)
I was complaining all the way through about the way the house was done as if it was in America. There was no way it fitted in teh surrounding as all, and as for Abby's comment that it must be worth millions, the girl clearly doesn't understand the words "property crash" and "recession", or rather the writers don't.

I really hate the way they constantly keep refusing to give the military a proper role, but at least Becker got to shoot someone.

It was a Scooby Doo rip off. Although I was amused by the Sid and Nancy crack.
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 08:34 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lil_shepherd on April 4th, 2009 08:36 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lukadreaming on April 4th, 2009 08:35 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - louisedennis on April 4th, 2009 09:01 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - fredbassett on April 4th, 2009 09:20 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 09:36 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lil_shepherd on April 5th, 2009 07:52 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - reggietate on April 5th, 2009 07:57 am (UTC) (Expand)
louisedennis: primevallouisedennis on April 4th, 2009 08:57 pm (UTC)
It was Becker's quick thinking that really sold me to him in a way I wasn't convinced about last week.

I think both last season's opener and the pterodactyl episode were worse than this (though I've not seen the pterodactyl one for a while and the memory does cheat). I think it had a nice set up and nice moments. Mostly I didn't think people acted that foolishly - they were all working on the assumption there was nothing in the house which was not entirely unreasonable. It's lack of pacing and general repetition is what let it down.
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 09:38 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lil_shepherd on April 5th, 2009 07:04 am (UTC) (Expand)
reggietatereggietate on April 4th, 2009 08:18 pm (UTC)
In other news, I was sorry Cutter wasn't in more of it (looks like Douglas Henshall was already on short hours by this point).

Yes. But even that needn't have hobbled the ep so much if they'd thought a bit more about the plot. Cutter doing his thing back in the lab was fine, but letting the team go alone to a potential anomaly was not. At least not after they had some idea of there being activity there. They all know better.

Danny I could almost like if it weren't for the reasons he's there in the first place.
fredbassettfredbassett on April 4th, 2009 08:31 pm (UTC)
Cutter was doing bugger all. Dougie had obviously signed up for this series on the condition that he was in it as little as possible.

I liked Danny slightly more than I;d been expecting, but that was about it.

lukadreaminglukadreaming on April 4th, 2009 08:36 pm (UTC)
Danny struck me as the cliched maverick cop with a chip on his shoulder. I need a lot more convincing to watch a show based on him, Abby and Connor!
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 08:38 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lukadreaming on April 4th, 2009 08:40 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 08:42 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lukadreaming on April 4th, 2009 08:44 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 08:54 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lukadreaming on April 4th, 2009 08:56 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - louisedennis on April 4th, 2009 09:08 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lukadreaming on April 4th, 2009 09:16 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - louisedennis on April 4th, 2009 09:03 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lukadreaming on April 4th, 2009 09:06 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - louisedennis on April 4th, 2009 09:10 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lukadreaming on April 4th, 2009 09:17 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 09:25 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lukadreaming on April 4th, 2009 09:40 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 09:45 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lukadreaming on April 4th, 2009 09:50 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 09:53 pm (UTC) (Expand)
reggietatereggietate on April 4th, 2009 08:37 pm (UTC)
Cutter was doing bugger all. Dougie had obviously signed up for this series on the condition that he was in it as little as possible.

Sadly, I think that seems to be the case :-(
Susan: nicklil_shepherd on April 4th, 2009 08:34 pm (UTC)
I was prepared to like Danny, Unfortunately, he was exactly the sort of character I dislike at any time (whiney, self-centred, stupid) and did not even have the redeeming virtue of being pretty.
louisedennis: primevallouisedennis on April 4th, 2009 08:59 pm (UTC)
It wasn't a imminently potential anomaly, it was an anomaly in the next few years. I had no problem with sending a small team to check out the lie of the land. I think they could have explained it better though and they really didn't have any idea there was current activity until, OK well until Abby got knocked out so Connor was a bit of an idiot but mostly events overtook them at that point. It wasn't slickly explained but it wasn't idiotic.

I'm not prepared to hold not being Cutter against Danny. It's not his fault.
reggietatereggietate on April 4th, 2009 09:13 pm (UTC)
I'm not prepared to hold not being Cutter against Danny. It's not his fault.

Not, I suppose it's not, but I still don't think I'm going to like him for a good while. Certainly not if they accept him without a qualm after You Know What.
(no subject) - louisedennis on April 4th, 2009 09:15 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 09:23 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - madscribbles on April 4th, 2009 09:28 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 09:34 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - madscribbles on April 4th, 2009 09:43 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - reggietate on April 4th, 2009 09:47 pm (UTC) (Expand)
fififolle: Primeval - Abby car Naughty Girlfififolle on April 5th, 2009 10:21 am (UTC)
Totally agree, if I wasn't a 'fan' I would have turned it off it was going so slowly.
But! Oh! Danny! ♥ :D