Wayward Pines is a TV show that is currently airing its second season. It is executive produced by M. Night Shyamalan who previously received attention for films such as The Sixth Sense, Signs, and The Village. I feel that with any M. Night project, you have to look at it with an open mind. I don’t consider myself to be either a hardcore fan of his or an anti-fan, but instead an observer who likes to contemplate on his themes and characters.
In my opinion, there is a common thread in any M. Night Shyamalan project. He presents the audience with an unknown terror that humanity must face, but also gives us the realization that humanity itself could be its own worst enemy. His unique ability to mix Science Fiction with stark reality is what brings any viewer to the table. That being said, although I do enjoy his story teller skills, sometimes side plots or minor characters can derail the audience from a satisfying ending. For instance, although I know that many people liked The Village, I felt betrayed by it. (SPOILER ALERT) I was invested in a time period throughout the whole length of the film only to find out that it really didn’t exist. The idea was admirable and somewhat original, but the fact that I felt like my emotions had been played with- kept me from fully appreciating the movie.
Wayward Pines definitely lies within the same vein as its predecessors. Before I say anything else, I would like to note that Season 2 is currently airing and is not finished yet. I don’t care for it as much as I liked Season 1, but it could be that the plot is just building right now and may improve as the episodes progress-that is my hope anyway.
Season 1 opens with Secret Service Agent Ethan Burke (played by Matt Dillon) being knocked unconscious and waking up in Wayward Pines. He finds the town to be strange and secretive. Everyone there follows a set of rules where they are encouraged to forget about the past and be satisfied with their new lives. Ethan struggles to maneuver the eerie town in order to get back to his family. At first, you think that the town is simply part of a government project, but eventually it’s revealed that there are creatures attempting to get to the town. Ethan finds himself caught between choosing between the devil he knows and the devil he doesn’t know.
Season 2 takes place a few years after. I don’t really want to spoil anything although I will say that it stars Jason Patric (from movies The Lost Boys and Speed 2) as Dr. Theo Yedlin and that Season 2 has more of a “Children of the Korn” vibe to it. So far, I think the problem with Season 2 is that the supporting cast isn’t as strong as it was in the first season. Matt Dillon’s chemistry with his co-stars comes across clearly, however Jason Patric’s connections seem more strained. To be fair, he does play a doctor who would certainly be more of a reserved individual than a police officer would, and it could be that Jason Patric’s character (Theo) becomes more emotionally attached to the other characters as the town deteriorates. Only time will tell.
Who do I think will enjoy the show Wayward Pines? I think Science Fiction enthusiasts and people who are willing to go along for the ride will like the show.
Who won’t like it? People who don’t want to suspend believe or dislike environmental plots.
I’m not going to say the show is perfect. However, I’m always interested in shows that are unique in that there is nothing similar to them on the air. In that aspect, this show is successful.
I give it 3 ½ shields for the Season 1 and for Season 2, as it currently is, 2 ½ shields.
…and for Season 2, as it currently is, 2 ½ shields.
The first season is a good show to binge watch on Hulu. The second is one that you may want to more steadily pace yourself on and currently airs on FOX on Wednesdays.
Curious about the show? Here’s a clip below from the First Season. Warning-One of the clips is a little gory. Enjoy fellow geeks!