Falling Skies: Review: Season 1 Ep 5

TNT, July 10 (US); FX, August 2 (UK)

The captive alien slaughters Dr. Harris (Steven Weber) and pays the ultimate price, while Tom Mason (Noah Wyle) rescues his son, Ben, from the aliens.

Major things happened in this week’s Falling Skies, but that didn’t stop it being one of the dullest episodes yet. The synopsis above may sound terribly exciting, but the unexpected death of Steven Weber’s shifty doctor aside, the rest of the action was seriously sleep inducing.

In destroying the alien captive, Falling Skies has lost its key point of interest. My hope was that the alien would suddenly reveal it could speak English all along, but it was not to be. The potential stories to be told revolving around the human interaction with their captive were enormous and it is a failure of the imagination that the writers could think of nothing else to do but kill it off…

The rest of the episode drowned in a sea of schmaltz, which gets in the way of the action, but has been hailed by mainstream critics as the show exhibiting the “Spielberg touch”. I don’t necessarily need soap opera mixed in with my alien invasion action. Another major failing of this episode was the absence of Colin Cunningham’s Pope, the only real interesting character on the show.

This episode was a huge step back, although one scene promised intriguing future developments. When Mason’s older son infiltrated the alien nest, he becomes part of the ‘harnessed’ chain gang of kids. As they go to sleep, their alien overlord seems to take on a maternal aspect, stroking ‘her’ children’s hair as they sleep.

Falling Skies has been renewed, but halfway through the first run of episodes, the show has not yet earned it.

Verdict: Backsliding in a major way, Falling Skies is terminally boring once more…

Episode 5 ‘SIlent Kill’: 5/10

Brian J. Robb

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