TV Review: Surface Premiere

Monday, September 19, 2005

The second offering in the aliens have landed on Earth and are wrecking havoc premiered tonight in the form of Surface on NBC at 8/7c. The first offering premiered on Friday in the form of Threshold on CBS. My thoughts of that show found here. The final show in this same vein, Invasion, premieres on Wednesday following popular Emmy award winning Lost on ABC.

Lost was the breakout hit of last season, and one of the prevailing theories being thrown around about the island in which the plane crashed on in that show is the fact that aliens are behind it all. So now we have not one but three shows trying to duplicate that same success for their own shows this season.

Surface tells the story of a discovery of a new life form in the ocean. A life form previously unheard of on Earth, and throughout the episode it appears in several different places around the world. One discovery is made by a marine biologist, Laura Daughtery, in a submersible. At 5,000 feet, she gets an up close and personal look at the new vertebrate. However, once news of the sighting is leaked, the government comes in and shuts her operation down in an effort to keep the discovery under wraps.

Other sightings include a spotting in San Diego, and another near an oil rig off the coast of Louisiana, where two divers get a look at the new mammal at even closer range than the scientist. One of the divers is not very fortunate, but the other does make it out alive.

The third sighting is by a teenage boy in San Diego, and he talks his friends into helping him bring back some eggs back home, placing them in his fish tank. Not the smartest of moves, but now we have a life form, and this boy has one in his sister’s bathtub!

With these sightings and other strange happenings, including a meteor shower in the Caribbean that looks to be bringing forth more of these creatures to the ocean waters of the world, this show definitely looks to be worth another look. The previews for next week look promising as well.

After following Threshold, this show worked a bit better for me. It seemed to reach out and grab you more. The character seem to be a bit more real. The government aspect of Threshold didn’t allow for that. Those characters were more straight forward and serious. The characters of Surface aren’t as straight forward. They had more grit and emotion to me. Laura Daughtery, played by Lake Bell, is a single mom that worked her way through college, and now she works as a oceanographer while still raising her son. The diver, Rich Connelly, played by Jay Ferguson, is deeply affected by the events just beneath the surface of the waves.

These characters definitely let you dive under their surfaces, and I’m wondering what will happen in future episodes. For now, I’ll continue to watch. Surely with three shows with a premise surrounding the discovery of aliens on our planet, not all of them will make it through the season. Whether Surface has what it takes to keep us going beneath its surface is yet to be seen.


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