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New episode of the HijiNKS ENSUE Podcast! Episode 89 – John Quincy Adams: Mummy Strangler

Based on last week’s episode, Revolution is 0 for 2. This had me feeling like the fall TV season was off to bad start. Then I watched the pilot for Last Resort and my excitement was decidedly renewed. Almost instantly I was caught up in the premise (a nuclear sub disobeys questionable orders and seeks haven from it’s own government in the harbor of a tropical island that appears to be run by a pirate/drug lord/pimp). I was nervous, tense, excited, guessing and theorizing throughout the entire episode. These are all good signs. It’s so much more rewarding to be mentally screaming at the screen “NO NO NO! DON’T DO TH… OH CRAP HE DID IT! THAT SONOVABITCH!” than, “I’m SUPPOSED to like this kind of show, right? I mean, it’s sort of sci-fi. I bet it gets better.”

The laws of attraction apply to TV as well as people. Sure, you need to give people (and TV shows) a chance to show you what they’re really all about, but there needs to be an initial spark. Something to cling onto right off the bat that keeps you wanting more. Last Resort definitely has that spark. It’s the first new show I’ve seen in at least 3 years where the casting, the acting, the premise and the writing were ALL the strong suits. It’s also the only one I can recall in recent memory where all those elements were working together and moving in the same direction. All too often you see good casting wasted on week scripts, or good lines wasted on flat deliveries. Last Resort, at least in the pilot, isn’t falling prey to these types ofย maladies. If it can maintain this momentum, then I am going to be in for the whole season. Conversely, Revolution gets 2, maybe 3 more eps from me before I give up.

Bonus points to Last Resort for casting Dichan Lachman. She’s a scene (and sometimes show) stealer if there ever was one. Unfortunately I don’t think she even had a line in the pilot, but I am hoping they use her well in the future. Scott Speedman from Underworld is the X.O. of the submarine. I’m not certain, but I think he’s still a double werewolf.

COMMENTERS: What did you think of Last Resort? Keep spoilers to an absolute minimum and mark you posts as such: SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS!!!!

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22 Comments

  1. Hey, at least some of your previous concerns were addressed. SOMEONE admitted that the power outage didn't really make sense. I agree, it's still not grabbing me. The acting is frankly awful…

    …except for Giancarlo Esposito. He's been great.

    SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS!!!!

    As for Last Resort…I don't have nay idea how they can maintain the tension they got out of the first episode. It was really edge-of-your-seat stuff. If the show stays this good, it's gonna be a wild ride.

    SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS!!!!

    They did the one thing you have to do on a show like this to raise the stakes: they used nukes. Who's to say they won't use more? But on a show where ethical questions are being tossed around, did someone just toss a nuke into the open seas near Washington, and hope no boats were there? Maybe the odds of hitting something were infinitesimal, but still.

    • SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS!!!!

      Also the prevailing winds moving radiation around seem to be problematic and unaddressed. Even with that though I found the show to be very interesting and I'm hoping for more good things to come.

  2. My main worry about Last Resort is it may end up like some other shows such as My Own Worst Enemy which had an interesting idea for a movie or miniseries but were unable to maintain it as a full series for even one season. I'm just not sure where they can go past 5-6 episodes that doesn't stink of padding.

    I would be quite happy to be proven wrong though, enjoyed the first episode.

  3. I loved Last Resort. Super excited to see it continue. Revolution, however, I feel might have made a better six episode BBC series. I don't see how they can keep their story interesting and/or original for a full 22 episodes.

  4. SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS!!!!

    It wasn't just the nuke that the sub shot near D.C., but two nukes were fired into Pakistan as well (the NATO listening post watched them fly and impact). I also think that they will be able to keep things interesting plot-wise because they've already established five different groupings in the cast (crew that's backing the Captain, crew that's against him (led by the Chief of the Boat), the neutral locals on the island (barkeep, NATO folks), the island's local 'my balls are so huge' bad guy and his cronies, and the folks back in D.C. (the Admiral and the corporate rep). That and they haven't even done more than give little teaser hints that the SEAL team they picked up has some connection to what the hell's going on.

  5. I actually thought episode two of Revolution was far better than Episode 1. Plus I like Gus Fring's character. I'm constantly annoyed at who is still alive. Asthma kid would have been dead more than a decade ago. The family is fucked up and the dad is a pussy.

    As for Last Resort…

    SPOILERS AND SUCH

    I loved Last Resort. It was great. My problems with the show are, at this point, nitpick, but dammit, if I can't do those what kind of nerd am I? The radar screens and maps were all wrong. But I think theyh worked for the show better than the real stuff would. However the Map of Pakistan was needlessly wrong. It was just a poorly drawn map. I was trying to figure out where they were nuking but it wasn't easy with that shitty map. (I did figure out it was Karachi and they were trying to hit Islamabad but it looked more like they nuked Kashmir for some reason.

    Lastly, the way Trident missiles work, if you want to nuke four targets, you laucnh one missile, then it goes to the upper atmosphere and seperates into 4-18 MIRV (Multiple INdependent Reentry Vehicles) which then independently target cities and hit them by just falling at them from space. Not a conventional missile strike. But it was pretty slick looking.

  6. I've got hopes for Last Resort. My wife has this habit where can figure out the plot of any show within 5 minutes of watching it so for the last several years very few things have allowed us to enjoy any kind of suspense. With this show, both of us were speculating about how long it could go on and what kind of plot twists could occur etc etc. When we start to talk like this about a show we've found it's generally got great potential, so long as the networks don't put it on the chopping block too soon.

  7. I served on a submarine for 8 years. Because my wife hates me she made me watch this show. While I love Andre Braugher I dispised this show. I’m fairly certain the writers never bothered to call a guy who had seen a submarine let alone been on one. Sadly, it wasn’t even the numerous technical innacuracies or decision that this boat was run entirely by its officers that really got me. It was when the COB prefaced a navy saying with “there’s an old navy saying…” Why would he do that ever? Doctors don’t tell other doctors that there are old doctor sayings. Also, at one point the XO is talking to somebody in front of a metal locker with a CPU fan glued to the outside. Apparently this was supposed to be equipment?

  8. Was I the only person who felt it was melodramatic and poorly acted? You had me at "renegade nuclear sub" but lost me by filming it with actors.

  9. The pilot episode had me on the edge of my seat – easily the best pilot I've seen in years, probably since Lost. I have no idea how they'll keep that up, but lots of interesting characters here. As for technical/military inaccuracies, I'm fine with it if it makes better drama.

    SPOILERS SPOILERS
    One thing I noticed (though only the second time I watched the episode, I was so engaged the first time) – they come back to the sub with the bombers on the way, give the order to dive. The captain says no, they're not running, and two crew members are missing. Then a minute later they fire the missile from underwater. Huh?
    That CG was cheaper and easier than the surfaced sub firing the missile I guess.

  10. I used to work in nuclear targeting.

    SLBMs have preprogrammed targets. They're not just bigger, better bottle rockets – you don't just point one and light the fuse. (That's where the "ballistic" part of the name comes from.) If the US military has a sudden need to nuke a target not previously designated, that's what bombers and cruise missiles are for. Nuking Pakistani targets is highly improbable; the captain just up and deciding to fire a missile at a domestic target is plain ridiculous. And how does the NORAD radar network *not* track a ballistic course across CONUS, and know *exactly* where it terminates to within a hundred meters?

    You don't target a submarine with a cruise missile. That's sillier than trying to fire a laser underwater. You also don't fire on ships of your own fleet, at least not without giving them a chance to surrender; the commander of the Illinois should have been arrested by his XO and bound over for court-martial for obeying an illegal order.

    And let's not even get into the silliness of their communications protocols, or the idea that you can pick up domestic US TV broadcasts in the Indian Ocean…

    • i'm glad to know it takes more than 2 submarine oficers to start firing nukes left and right XD

      If I want to watch a show set around a war in the midle east, I’ll stick to Homeland, less submarines, but more psycotic Claire Danes ๐Ÿ˜‰

  11. Underworld? Ugh. Please give him the credit he deserves. He's from Felicity. If I were an actor I would not want that over-hyped piece of leather covered trash to define my career.

    • Scott Speedman needs to wear one of those stripper banana-hammock dancer things, and just hang out on the beach looking hot…or fighting off waves of bad guys by smacking them with him fully loaded banana-hammock.

  12. The guy from a sub nailed it for me. I could NOT watch more than two minutes of that thing. Subs are cramped, rounded, low clearance, and filled with more runs of copper than anything. Routers and computer racks look like routers and computer racks anywhere they're installed… even on a submarine. **GOD DAMNIT YOU CAN NOT MAKE IT LOOK SOPHISTICATED BY BLASTING IT WITH MORE BLUE GEL** ffs.

  13. SPOOOOOOIIILLLEERS!

    scott speedman eventually leads a mutiny, becomes loyal to mother russia, takes on a scottish accent and transforms into sean connery!

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