To be fair, I do fine the concept of a series set months after an alien invasion intriguing. Especially if done in a good and interesting way. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like Falling Skies is being done in a good and interesting way. Here are three problems I have with it, in no particular order.
1) Too many one-dimensional, minor characters. For example, the religious girl, the child soldier, the pregnant woman, and the little boy whose sole purpose appears to be tugging at heartstrings. To me, their scenes feel shoehorned into the episodes. I think that in the beginning of a series, the time would be better spent showing the world and developing the major characters. If a minor character shows up, fine, but don’t stop everything else to focus on them. You can slowly work them in later.
2) Misusing minor characters. Karen – I thought she was a major character, but then she was captured and I don’t think anyone has mentioned her in the last two episodes. Pope – A gang leader could be an interesting character in a post-invasion world. Oh, let’s make him a chef. Oh, and let’s have him run off after a couple of episodes. That way, when we bring him back – eventually – there will be drama as to whether or not the group can trust him. You know, imposed drama instead of that lame, naturally occurring drama that comes from character interactions and development. Harris – Let’s bring in a guy who figures out how to take the harnesses off kids. Let there be some tension between him and Tom. Now that’s done, we have no further use for him, so let’s kill him off. We don’t want there to be drama as he and Tom continue to work together.
3) The harnessed kids. I’m sure they’ll eventually dump a load of technobabble to explain why the alien technology only works on human children, but I know the real reason; it’s horrifying for them to do stuff to children. If they killed or enslaved everyone, they wouldn’t be as bad. But since they kill adults and enslave children, they’re EVIL!
There are more things, but they’re smaller and harder to write up. These are just three big ones. I’ll continue to watch it, partly on the slim chance it will get better, but manly because there’s nothing else on. But I predict that in a few episodes there will be something so monumentally stupid, I’ll write a blog about how I can no longer watch the show.