Sarah Connor Chronicles Season 2 Premiere Review

September 9, 2008 at 6:15 pm 1 comment

Picking up immediately where the Season 1 finale left off.  Cameron is stuck inside the Jeep after a car bomb went off, Sarah and John are rushing outside after they hear the explosion, and Derek is MIA, presumably still at the park he took John to for his birthday.  The entire opening sequence is basically a montage set to music, just like the second-to-last scene in the finale.  The opening also potentially points to the direction the series is headed: more action.

The opening basically consists of two guys breaking into the Connor house and taking Sarah and John hostage.  Cameron reboots, but is physically damaged and cannot move well.  Her CPU has also sustained damage, due to some shrapnel getting lodged in the back of her head.  Sarah and John fight their way through one of the intruders, while Cameron makes short work of the other.  But something’s not quite right.  Upon meeting up with the Connors, Cameron pulls a gun on John.

What follows is Sarah and John running like hell from Cameron, who’s ‘Protect John Connor’ directive has been overridden to the original ‘Terminate’ order.

I asusme that one of the biggest complaints the series had was the lack of action.  I think people were expecting a more sci-fi version of 24 (which wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing), but what I felt creator Josh Friedman and Co were going for was a drama with a little bit of action thrown in, something along the lines of Lost or Heroes.  What would keep the audience tuning back in every week would be the twists in the story.

What I liked about the premise of the show was that the writers could have a lot to work with.  The movies set up this notion that John Connor becomes this ‘great military leader’, but what we see in Terminator 2: Judgement Day is a young trouble maker barely able to take care of himself.  What turns him into a leader?  Or a bigger question: what turns John into the leader that will save the world?  The Sarah Connor Chronicles attempts to answer that question.

So far, Season 2 looks like it’s going in that direction, just with more running and explosions (possibly due to a bigger budget).  In the episode, John makes a decision that could be deadly for him and, by proxy, the rest of the world.  I won’t give that away, for those that haven’t seen it yet, but what I found interesting is that the character is taking a much more proactive role in the story.  Throughout Season 1, Sarah was calling the shots, telling everyone what to do, when to do it, and how to do it.  Now, John’s learning to make decisions he feels is right, even if everyone else thinks it’s bad, or even catastrophic.

Another thing I liked about the episode was at the end.  Sarah admits to John that she is trying hard to be a mother, but can’t at the moment; their situation demands that she play the rold of bodyguard and teacher, rather than nurturing mother.  It pains her to say this, but they both know it’s true, which leads me to think that John’s ‘rebellious teen years’ will be difficult for Sarah to handle.

The biggest surprise of the night was the revelation of a new terminator: Sarah Weaver (Shirley Manson, yes from the band Garbage).  Weaver appears to be another T-1000 model Infiltrator, like the iconic villain played by Robert Patrick in T2.  And, let’s not forget that Cromartie/Kester is still out there, only this time his cover is blown and can’t walk around under the guise of an FBI agent anymore.  The Connors still have allies: Derek is still around and just as distrustful of machines as he was in Season 1, and Sarah’s old flame Charlie Dixon seems to be playing a more active role in the story.  A possible new ally is FBI Agen Ellison, who spent most of the previous season hunting the Connors and generally being confused as to what the hell is really going on.  He’s a believer now, after what he’s witnessed Cromartie do and the stuff he’s seen when he visited Dr. Silberman.

I hope that this new season doesn’t hit a slump early like Season 1 did.  The second episode in S1 wasn’t as interesting as the premiere, and the show really didn’t start to get good until episode 7.  What I felt was good about the previous season was that they were hitting on some really strong themes, like mortality and faith; themes that are generally reserved for much better-written shows like Battlestar Galactica.  The Director’s Cut of episode 7 of Season 1, entitled ‘Demon’s Hand’, and the final episode, were very well-written, and showed that the creators were willing to take risks with the editing and pacing in order to get these themes across.  On a side note, I really liked how the Director’s Cut didn’t have music, it gave the episode a totally different feel, and I thought it highlighted the editing in a way that made the episode move more gracefully

So far, so good with Season 2.  There are some moments in the premiere that tried way too hard to mimic T2, but as long as they steer clear of those from now on, the show should be fine.

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Blabla  |  February 13, 2010 at 4:17 am

    Nice review

    Reply

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