Tuesday, 30 April 2013
Primeval New World
I should be writing as I type this, and by that I mean working on my novel Strike Dog, but I've just had this bug in me that wants to worm its way out of my body. Hence the diversion from working on the novel to take the time to write this here and now.
For reasons arising from both me and my partner's complete lack of tolerance when adverts interrupt our viewing, we don't watch commercial TV anymore. I know that one can record to time-shift stuff, and then fast forward through adverts, or even get systems that remove them for you, but I refer you to our lack of tolerance for such things. So nowadays we buy lots of series on Blu-Ray to watch at our own pace, which mainly means mainlining stuff in an orgy of story gratification when a series catches our attention.
Anyway, why watch one episode and wait a week when one can watch two, three or four episodes at a time?
We have just finished watching the new series of Primeval New World. I was totally bummed on discovering that it has been cancelled, which just sucks in my opinion. I think I can see why though. It was too slow in developing the central premise and showing the consequences of the wham, bam thank you ma'am action.
I know ickle-poo dinosaurs are cute, but good stories have consequences.
The original Primeval show was at its best when it showed the consequences of the teams actions, and why the choices that the characters made mattered. Primeval New World really hit a chord with us after we saw the death of one of the major characters girlfriend, but for me the following two episodes wandered away from the plot. Don't get me wrong, dinosaurs are cool, but even the coolest of things can fail to attract an audiences attention if you don't have enough plot. The plot for Primeval has always been that time travel risks changing the world.
I remember watching the end of the first season of Primeval on British TV and being shown what happens when the characters changed the timeline. The story really upped the ante that made the series take off for me, but it didn't take the original production company thirteen episodes to do this. Therefore my feeling is that Primeval New World failed to grab its audience, because the new producers took too long to show us the story that they meant to tell. It's a shame as I was starting to like the characters too.
NB: As an addendum, the one thing I hated about the show was the portrayal of Lieutenant Leeds. Not his acting, dialogue, or character. All fine, but the fact that he was shown wearing his uniform jacket unbuttoned, which would have been anathema to any serving member of the armed forces. Sorry, but every time I saw him it kicked me out of the story. Call me pedantic if you want, but details like this matter.