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Flash Forward
Reviewed by Joe Crowe, © 2009

Format: TV
By:   David Goyer, Marc Guggenheim
Genre:   Action / sci-fi
Review Date:   September 30, 2009
RevSF Rating:   6/10 (What Is This?)

"I was in a meeting." -- FBI chief

FlashForward is a tense action show with a sci-fi jumpoff point. Only one sci-fi thing happens so far. Everybody in the world blacks out for about 2 minutes. That's plenty of time for cars to wreck, stuff to blow up, dogs and cats to live together, mass hysteria.

While they were cold-cocked, everyone on the planet got ominous premonitions 6 months ahead. For some it was good stuff. For most on the show, not so much. Hand-wringing and brooding ensues.

In the future someone will be in a Styx video.

Robert Sawyer revealed the cause on the first page of the book the show is based on. But the show people may not use that. The creators said in an interview that it could go for seven years, but if not, they would still need three full seasons to wrap it all up.

Here are some good parts and bad parts to help you make up your mind on whether to buy in for the long haul.

Good part: The concept. The show is by creators we know (David Goyer), with actors we've seen (John Cho, Dominic Monaghan, Joseph Fiennes). All plots are set in motion and explained. The fear and dread, and hope, in the first episode is excellent.

Bad part: The execution. The show did not insist that I watch. I'm not biting my nails waiting on the next one. Something has got to happen every single week to keep up the tension.

Bad part: New Sulu Sulu gets all verklempt because he saw nothin' in his future. The odds are that millions saw nothin', since not everyone on Earth will be alive in six months. They could form a support group and listen to Morrissey.

Goofy part: The Internet! One of the FBI techs says that since everyone had a flash forward, they should set up a website! That way everyone can post their own premonitions!

So the premonitions will be "President of Nigeria will need your credit card info," and "BeXXXT site 4 hot asian."

Bad part: Crying! The show walks dangerously on the line of seizing the day, grabbing the moment, and reaching for the stars.

Scary part: Creepy kid. Children got the flash forwards, too. So now every child in this world will say things such as "There are no more good days."

Bad part: Kind of a bummer. The tone of the show is a downer, even for the ones who got a good prediction. Dudes, cheer up. At least you didn't get a gyp prediction like Sulu.

The best part, part 1: The cold-cock scene. They find on security-cam footage the moment everybody fell out.

Check it out here. It is awesome.

I bet the show makers did not mean for it to be comedy gold, but there it is. All the actors take one big group pratfall. Everyone flops right down, like they were all slapped at once by Moe from the Three Stooges.

The best part, part 2: The Big Bad. In that same clip, the end of the first episode shows someone who wasn't knocked smooth out.

He wears a black trenchcoat and a hat.

Is it Neo from The Matrix?

The ghost of Johnny Cash?

It's the WWE's Undertaker.

It's all a plan to get a shot at the World Heavyweight Championship. Clearly.

RevSF's Joe Crowe blacked out for about six hours last night. And when he came to, he was still laying on the same pillow!

Watch full episodes free on the Flash Forward site. Or rest ... in peace.

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