NBC, one of the largest television networks in the USA, prepares to delve into the world of post-apocalyptic drama starting September 17, 2012 at 10/9c with the all-new series Revolution. Created by Eric Kripke–the man behind CW’s popular drama Supernatural–and produced by Bad Robot Productions duo J.J Abrams (Lost, Alcatraz) and Bryan Burk, the series is set fifteen years after a global blackout has permanently disabled all forms of electronic devices. Structured society has crumbled, giving rise to a feudal system of warlords and bands of survivors clashing over territory and supplies. Revolution revolves around the Matheson family, who have possession of an object that may be able to undo the effects of the worldwide power outage but must cope with hostile opponents bent on stealing this item for themselves.
The main character of the series is Charlie Matheson, portrayed by Tracy Spiridakos (Being Human), a young woman whose father (Tim Guinee of The Good Wife) was somehow connected to the blackout. After her brother Danny, portrayed by Graham Rogers (Memphis Beat), is kidnapped by a group warlords, Charlie sets out on a journey to rescue him and figure out the cause of the power loss. She is accompanied by her Uncle Miles, played by Billy Burke (The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn), once a US Marine now living as a recluse and a group of survivors that include the likes of Daniella Alonso (Covert Affairs) and JD Pardo (American Dreams).
Giancarlo Esposito (Once Upon a Time) will portray main antagonist Captain Tom Neville, who is described as a former insurance adjuster who has become the leader of a militia group. Rounding out the cast are Zak Orth (Fringe), ER‘s David Lyons, Maria Howell (The Color Purple), and Lost‘s Elizabeth Mitchell as Charlie and Danny’s mother, Rachel.
Revolution is not the first time a network has taken the plunge into shows of this caliber. You may recall FOX’s dearly-departed dino-drama Terra Nova or Abrams’ own Alcatraz, neither of which lasted beyond their first season. It is a long-lamented fact that in the world of network television, sci-fi and post-apocalyptic series are rarely well-received. NBC is most known for its comedies so it was naturally a bit surprising when they announced this purportedly high-budget production. Furthermore, many skeptics have noted similarities between the series and other shows like Falling Skies, Game of Thrones, and even films like The Hunger Games. I was initially a skeptic myself, but after reviewing trailers for the series it has occurred to me how polished and well thought-out the plot is (at least from the information that has been revealed about it).
Abrams has made himself well-known to sci-fi fans through films like Star Trek and Cloverfield and the series has enlisted directors like Jon Favreau (Iron Man) and Jon Cassar (Terra Nova) to help it along. Coupled with the fact that the premise holds a broader appeal than just genre fans (admittedly a small bunch compared to overall television fans), Revolution may just be the show to help sci-fi break into mainstream network television. More information can be found at www.nbc.com/revolution/ and be sure to check back here once the season starts for more reviews!
On an unrelated note, I would like to thank everyone here at Three If By Space and especially all the readers for welcoming me aboard. I am very excited to be writing for the site!