Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Middleman


Caught Monday’s premiere on ABC Family. I guess you could say it’s a quirkier “Special Unit 2" with a dash of "Men In Black”. Lots of playful banter between the Middleman and his sidekick -- who at times bears an uncanny resemblance to Rosario Dawson -- as they battle the forces of evil. I’ve never read the “The Middleman” comic book, but the show certainly does capture the feel of that medium. Honestly, I’m more than a little surprised that a quirky, sci-fi comedy was able to get past the gate keepers. I would’ve expected all the fun to get sucked out by the machine and replaced with something “edgier”. BTW, “The Middleman” was created by “Lost” alumni Javier "Javi" Grillo-Marxuach and he happens to have a livejournal here.

8 comments:

Kristin said...

I haven't even seen ads for this...bummer that I missed it.

Hey, what did you think of last night's "Fear Itself"? The ending was pretty predictable and very bleak. But I think it was the best of the three so far. Disturbing.

I thought the secret ingredient in the pancakes would come into play here somehow. But oh well.

Next week's looks interesting, too.

screamwriter said...

Definitely the best episode so far, probably should have been shown first. As usual, something was off... there was no point to the story. If the protagonist was this arrogant jerk who took his family for granted and learned his lesson too late, the ending would more be satisfying. Instead, we get some poor soul who's punished just because...

What was the deal about God's will?

Kristin said...

Exactly, it was a very bleak ending. It was kind of "Outer Limits" in its ending...and sometimes they had dark endings. But this one felt particularly awful, because his family was so nice, his children so young. It was just disturbing and horrible.

I was hoping that the God's Will thing would be the fact that without the bad guy in his own body, he would lose his case for a life sentence and get the death penalty. But if he'd been in his own body, perhaps he would have gotten a lesser sentence? And I also wanted the bad guy switched to do something significant that would change the good guy's life for the better in some way...I don't know.

Once again, it's like I want to fiddle with the script and make it better! But it was the best so far.

screamwriter said...

I thought they were going to have the protagonist save his family, kill the imposter but remain trapped in the wrong body. The wife and kids realize who he is and they're a family again, but the only way to remain a family is for them to be on the run...

When you think about it, the episode borrows a lot from "Face/ Off"

Kris Eton said...

I know this is totally off-topic, but I had to check in about last night's "Fear Itself." Once again, creepy, building to something, but confusing and, ultimately, less-than-stellar ending. And the acting was off, don't you think?

I figured out the 'twist' right away, but was hoping they'd play it out a little better. I don't quite get why she seemed "afraid" of her new husband in the end...? And why she was hiding? I don't know. All very weird.

I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts?

screamwriter said...

I agree with everything you said. John Landis has probably forgotten more about horror than I'll ever know, but this just didn't work for me. Lots of overacting, creepy stares, illogical behavior... great job with the shadows and religious imagery though. It's really amazing how these stories are consistently off the mark.

Kristin said...

Exactly what I was thinking. They all have the same quality to them...building to something creepy and good, but messing up the payoff in a weird way.

I would agree, the statues and religious imagery added a lot to the episode as a whole. But there was no real tie-in. And who was pounding on the door? That was never explained.

I think the actress was miscast. There was no 'love' between this new husband and wife at all...I wanted to believe they would get married, but he just seemed very dark and cruel, she seemed almost uninterested in her own wedding/big day. And why the twin uncle brothers? Was that just a sloppy explanation of why they used the same actor for two roles?

Still will watch next week. They do a good job setting the mood, and, if nothing else, I may get a book idea out of one of these stories...

screamwriter said...

Here's some irony for you: they're a couple in real life! So much for on screen chemistry....

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