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20 November 2012 @ 09:34 pm
Primeval:New World - The New World  
Yes, I know I shouldn't have access to this yet. What can I say? I was impatient.

Primeval has had rather mixed success at season openers. It often seems rather uneasy trying to balance the competing claims of (re)introducing characters and concepts while, at the same time, providing an exciting monster story.

The New World is one of the better efforts. Interestingly I think the very first episode of the show is also very good so it may be that it is easier if you are starting off with a virtually clean slate, than it is if you are also trying to juggle with accomodating viewers already familiar with the show and characters.

B, who walked out halfway through season 2 Primeval and refused to come back until season 4, was very won over by the new set-up. It certainly seems like the Canadian production team have taken a look at a few of the corners the British production painted itself into and resolved to avoid them. So this anomaly response team is a private enterprise driven by a millionaire genius, which makes more sense of the desire for secrecy and the necessarily small scale and amateur nature of the team. The overlapping roles of animal/dinosaur person that dogged the original series and left some characters out on the sidelines are much more clearly delineated. In fact we only have one animal person. The Canadian setting also allows said animal person to believably be an expert on predator behaviour in the wild. The tranquilisers did not have instantaneous effect.

The raptors had feathers. It is difficult to exaggerate how much this pleased B.

On the downside I was sorry we lost the Drake character so early on. It was nice to have an older counter-weight to all the young and pretty on display. I also wasn't completely convinced about the frozen ARC operative in the basement. This may be because, as a viewer of the original series, I don't find the British Anomaly team particularly threatening or mysterious. This probably also undermined the appearance of Andrew Lee-Potts as Connor Temple, symbolically handing over to the new team. It's a bit difficult to view Connor through the lens of "mysterious saboteur" when you've followed the character for five years already. The comedy encounter with Ange Finch didn't really help here either.

All in all though, I enjoyed this new iteration of the show. It may be that a reboot was precisely what the concept needed.

This entry was originally posted at http://purplecat.dreamwidth.org/81525.html.
fredbassettfredbassett on November 21st, 2012 08:14 am (UTC)
I was sorry to lose Drake, as well, but being a north American show, there will be a lot of one off guest appearances, as it seems to be their style.

Like you, I really enjoyed it and thought they did a good job of the introductions. In common with the original, it's a case of don't pick the plot holes as everything will unravel, but that aside, I like the charcters and I enjoyed it a lot.

Sadly, episode 2 is by no means as good, but it makes a cracking return to form in episode 3, which I hugely enjoyed.
louisedennis: primevallouisedennis on November 21st, 2012 06:33 pm (UTC)
We've found it all fun so far, though I'm finding it really difficult to remember the character names. Toby is about the only one that registered without me looking it up somewhere.
fredbassettfredbassett on November 21st, 2012 07:09 pm (UTC)
Toby's not really made that much of an impression on me so far. I like Ange, the CEO, and Evan and Mac are pretty and slashable, so no problem there. Dylan seems to be establishing quite nicely, and I'm looking forward to seeing ep 4. I'd like to see more of Ken, the military guy.
louisedennislouisedennis on November 21st, 2012 07:13 pm (UTC)
Yeah! It's odd that its her name that stuck because she seems to be very much in the Jess role, always at the end of a phone line.