Monday, March 22, 2010

The Reason I Haven't Posted in a Month, and why Flash Forward Is Kind of Terrible

So, I haven't posted in a month, and even before that posts were erratic at best. So what's the reason, you might ask? Well, theoretical reader who doesn't actually exist, the reason isn't what you might expect. No, it's not that I've been busy, or some such nonsense, it's not that I have a life, and it's certainly not because I've been neglecting this blog and playing games instead. The reason is simple: Time travel.

You see, it's actually only been 5 minutes since I last posted, but because of my highly technical time traveling device, it's been a month for you guys. Simple, see?


I really want to like the show Flash Forward. I really do. It's a good premise... But the show is just disappointing. And do you know why? They're trying to be Lost. The problem with that is, quite simply, Lost does Lost a lot better than Flash Forward does lost.

Lost has great characters, and a great overall mystery.
Flash Forward had terrible characters, and a decent overall mystery.

The Lost characters are all very well developed. Take for example, Sawyer:
James Ford (AKA Sawyer) has shown many sides during Lost. When we first meet him, he seems very one-dimensional. He's the bully of the group, who steals, calls names, and is just an overall jerk.

Later on, you find out he's a Con Man. That fits, right? Well, you also find out that when he was younger, a man named Sawyer conned his father, who then went crazy, and killed his mother, and then himself. Thus, Sawyers beginnings.

Now, I never really liked Sawyer much until last season. That showed us a new side of Sawyer, when he settled down in Dharmatown with Juliet. This new side of him was very interesting, and showed that deep down there was more to him than that one-dimensional con man we saw in season one. And now, with Juliet dead, his character just gets more and more interesting.

In contrast, the more we see the character of Jack, the token "Good guy" character, the more we see him for what he is. He has a messiah complex. He wants to save everyone, no, needs to save everyone, not for their sake, but because he wants everyone to view him as a savior. That's why he wanted to go back to save the survivors. Not for their sake, but because he wants people to praise him as a savior.

Thus, since the first season, in my opinion at least, the way Jack and Sawyer are perceived has reversed, Sawyer wants to save people for their sake, and doesn't care what people think of him, while Jack just wants the praise for being a savior. That makes the whole thing a lot more interesting, not being sure how you're supposed to view them in the first place any more.

Meanwhile, Flash Forward has such memorable characters as:
Mark Benford, who is an FBI Agent with a history of drinking, and a fear he may return to it.
Olivia Benford, Mark's wife, who's afraid she may betray him.
Lloyd Simco, who's trying to be a good father, and is struggling with guilt from his belief that he caused the blackout.

I'd like to say that there was more to each character than that... But there really isn't.

There's more too.

Gay cop, FBI boss, guy who doesn't think he's going to live, I can describe most the Flash Forward characters in a sentence or less.

The worst example though, is the character of Charlie Pa- I'm sorry, Simon Campos, who's defining trait in my mind is, in case you couldn't tell, that his actor played Charlie on, you guessed it, Lost. Even worse than that though, his character feels to me like a poor attempt of what Lost did, of making deep characters, with the most recent episode being the defining example of this.
"He's a bad guy.. But he's doing it because he loves his family! He loves his family so much that he's killing his family! YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY!"
I'm sorry, but it's a big problem when I've been watching your show for months now, and I still call one of your characters the name of the character their actor played on another show.

So what's the fix? Simple: Stop trying to be Lost. Be yourself! You have a good idea for a mystery with the Flash Forwards! Just stop trying to make people care about your characters so much, and just focus on the Flash Forwards. Also, kill off Mark. Seriously, he's just annoying.

I said, months before the show started, that the show could go either way, on the one hand, if they made it just another cop show, it would be bad. On the other, if they made it a show that focused on the idea that EVERYONE had a Flash Forward, and what it would mean, and how it would change life to have to account for the future, not just the past, then it would be good. Now, Flash Forward keeps saying that they're doing that, ("Everyone makes choice based on what WILL happen now!") but they don't ACTUALLY do it.

You know what a show I'd rather be watching is? One that's not about Mark. Lloyd and Simon, while neither are interesting characters, make the show itself more interesting while they are onscreen, just because they focus less on the characters, and more on the mystery.

You know who my favorite character on Lost is? Hurley. He's fun, and he has a good, fleshed out character. At first he seemed like just comic relief, and it's true, for the most part he is still just comic relief. But there's MORE TO HIM than just that.

You know who my favorite character on Flash Forward is? I don't have one. I'm so indifferent about all of them, that I cannot pick one out as my favorite.

That's a problem, and it's on they really need to fix. Oh well, at least I still have V.

1 comment:

  1. First!!

    Sorry, someone HAD to do it. ;)

    I've added you to my Google reader, so now you have to post more. You have a readership now, you know!