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Flash Forward

Started by Lew, Oct 02, 2009, 07:45:57 PM

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We're two weeks into the new line up.  Anyone watching Flash Forward.  It's not bad, but I'm on the fence.  Figure it's good for at least one more episode.
So many subplots


I'm enjoying it. I am concerned where they're going, but I believe the show will suck me in for at least one season.

I've had numerous determinism vs free-will conversations lately. So, my interest may be personally higher than most.
Thank you Mario! But our Princess is in another castle!


I haven't watched it.  Other shows that I watch are on at the same time and I've also been watching the PBS series on National Parks.  The new shows I've watched so far are NCIS: Los Angeles and The Forgotten.  Been a challenge some nights to get everything recorded I want to see.  I watch too much TV these days.

"Drawing on my fine command of the English language, I said nothing." - Robert Benchley
Twitter: @mrheadrick


I know what you mean Head.  The aren't really that many shows, I try to see, but a lot of them come on at the same time.

DJ, I'm very interested in how they will handle some issues.  You can't tell me, someone won't react violently to a vision.  You can circumnavigate these on a small scale, say four or five characters.  For instance, Joe "sees" his wife sleeping with Bob.  Joe kills Bob.  It turns out Bob survived the attempt for an interesting is annoying twist.

Flash forward is dealing with a planet full of people, and if the ignore the issue I'll be dissappointed.  You'll have people going out of their way and no way to explain them all away.  Chavez is a hard core gang banger.  Chavez sees himself playing card with Estavo in his flash forward.  Chavez shoots Estavo to prove he does not answer to fate.  A lot of people don't value life and would do this.  Well, maybe not a lot, but it only takes one.

Now, they do have ways to deal with it.  The easiest would be going with the fate not fixed theory.  Other ways would be much more fringe.  Of course, the event has pretty much got to do with aliens, God, or some super high tech secret society, so how much more fringe can you get.

Last thought DJ.  Did you catch the wall where people were posting pictures of the "missing"?  Was that a miner fluff fact, or opening the door for finding out some people have litterally vanished from the face of the Earth.  No way to know now, but I was just wondering what you thought.
So many subplots


Yes, I agree; the planet is too calm right now. The scene where the girl pushes the boy on the playground and the teacher scolds her for fighting seemed way underplayed. I know it was a setup to another point, but all the extras are very clinical. There is not enough chaos for an event of this magnitude. But they are writing to a dumb audience.

Another possible explanation is the earth was destroyed; everyone died. It's grandiose and simplistic, but to have a global event the answer cannot be too complex even if the interplay to discover it is.

I think the "missing" thing was simple the downplay of so many dying from the original event and had no grander significance - but we shall see. The other thing I think they didn't handle well was half the planet would be asleep during the event and likely not be affected or if they were that would be highly significant.
Thank you Mario! But our Princess is in another castle!


Ok, help me work through what I perceive as a major flaw in tonight's show. It was subtle and possibly meaningless.

When looking for other incidents of mass crow deaths, there was a news hit about the CDC requesting additional funding from DHS. What is "DHS?" At first I thought Department of Human Services, but those are state agencies. The CDC wouldn't request funding from state agencies. The federal department under the executive branch is called Health and Human Services and its official acronym is DHHS (even in 1991). So, the only federal agency with the acronym of DHS is the Department of Homeland Security - but it didn't exist until 2001, and the story incident happened in 1991. So, what does "DHS" stand for?

Perhaps this is just a screw up - but in a "mystery" show driven by details where the audience is expected to understand Cabalism and drops subtle hints hoping watchers will catch the unusual, it was detail that stuck out to me.

Thank you Mario! But our Princess is in another castle!


I honestly didn't notice.  What bugged me about that sub plot is they didn't clearly state what the date was in the scene where the young boy witnessed the birds fall and the village pass out.  Are we to assume that was a dramatisation of the earlier even like they were talking about?  Was it a scene from the major flash forward that is central to the show?  Was it live and meant to indicate that at this "ground 0" it's happening a lot?

I'm shifting back and forth on my opinion of the show, almost scene to scene.
So many subplots


So, I've put together a theory.  We don't have much information, but I can't help but try to figure it out.

Show +75 years - The world is a grim place.  It has barely survived repeated man made disasters.  Nuclear terrorism in the early years of the 21st century caused the U.S. to become draconian and lash out against perceived enemies.  World wide fuel shortages, chaotic weather and a wounded super power led to a wave of anarchy and rampent brushfire wars.  Much of Wester Europe fell victim to the same fates.  A few regional governments survive, but not many.

It is not a return to the stone age.  In a few enclaves civilization survives and technology continues to move forward.  Based on extremely theoretical physics a group of scientists manage to develop . . wait for it . . . a TIME MACHINE!  The problem is that going back creates a ripple effect causing the Flash Forward.

So you now have a case where some future people are around.  I'm sure some would be good and some bad.  Under this theory the dirty bomb terrorists the agents were after in the show's open scene are involved in the initial acts of the downfall. 

There are a million variations based on this and I know we really don't have much to go by.  Hopefully this isn't a show that is impossible to figure out because they keep adding new layers of "mystery".

So many subplots


My interpretation of the ravens and village is that it happened in 1991.

As to your theory about time-travel, I think that is a very likely explanation. It fits in the US-policy bashing popularity of current Hollywood writing and also gives a plausible explanation to the event.

Whatever the cause, I still think the world-state is too orderly. I question whether flying around the world, even by government agents, would be acceptable in the wake of 800+ airline crashes only weeks prior....among other lack-of-chaos issues. Despite a few things being painfully predictable, there is a decent mystery factor; plus, I like a major character destined to die. I'm curious how they will play that out.

Finally, I fear your last prediction may be accurate. This is from the writers of "Lost" who didn't decide what was happening in that series until the third season. This seems a little faster paced, but I'm concerned about mystery turning to soap-opera absurdity. The end of this season will likely be the breaking-or-loving point for me.
Thank you Mario! But our Princess is in another castle!


Well, it seems tonight's episode answered the previous ambiguity of when the raven incident happened. It was indeed in 1991. And I will admit that I liked the additional chaos and political obscurity introduced into the story tonight. However, I now believe we have 12 major characters to track and follow histories, including the President and Vice President.

While I don't mind a complex story, too many characters impacting a single plot line can become distracting. I'm concerned they will be writing detail for the purpose of stretching-out the series rather than for developing either story or character. But I could be wrong. It's still holding my attention.
Thank you Mario! But our Princess is in another castle!


How they handle the structures in Somalia will make a big difference on how I view the show.  I don't think they could piss me off enough to make me give up mid season, but it will be a make or break issue for how seriously I take the show.  Right now, I'm in the same place I was last week.  It has a lot of potential and I hope they can make it work.
So many subplots


It is reminding me of some of my past failed story lines for campaigns where I thought "ooo...this is a cool idea" but didn't really have it well-developed enough to make the plot go where I wanted and/or wasn't flexible enough to let the story go where the players needed to take it. As you said, I don't think it will be a dismal failure, but I'm less intrigued to watch than I was initially. However, I'm still curious enough to know where they're going.

Something I find interesting, especially about our critiques, is that we really don't have enough information to discuss the show well. We are more talking about the writer's methods and ideology rather than what's happening on the show. I wonder what that means.

Aside from that, I googled a bit and found the show is based on Robert J. Sawyer's 1999 novel where the explanation is the activation of the Large Hadron Collider at CERN at precisely the same moment a burst of neutrinos arrives from the remnants of Supernova 1987A. That said, here are some internet theories for the show:

  • FBI agent Demetri Noh is part of the conspiracy - when Mark woke up, Demetri was out of the car already, perhaps conscious and running around.
  • The conspirators are trying to avert a cataclysmic future for the human race. The conspiracy will create more flash-forwards that take us further into the future, showing the human race the self-destruction that will take place if we don't change our ways
  • The flash-forward is somehow connected to the explosion that took place in the fifth season finale of Lost, "The Incident."
  • The Christian Apocalypse. The people who didn't see their future when they blacked out will be taken in the Rapture, and the others will be left behind (so to speak) to fight the Antichrist.
  • The kangaroo did it.
Thank you Mario! But our Princess is in another castle!


I know this is off topic but no where in Revelations is there any mention of The Rapture.

It's something that modern day Protestant Christian Fundamentalists made up....



I must respectfully differ. The word "rapture" is not in Revelations nor in the Bible; that is true - mainly because it's an English word derived from Vulgate. However, the description of the event is pepper throughout the Bible. Here are a few of many references:

1 Thess: 4:15-18 - According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words.

1 Corinthians 15:51 - Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed - in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet.

...and in the words of Christ Himself...

John 14:1-3 - "Your heart must not be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in Me. In My Father's house are many dwelling places; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you. If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come back and receive you to Myself, so that where I am you may be also."

If it was made-up, it was done so by the first century church, not Protestant Christian Fundamentalists. Even then, there are references in the Old Testament Book of Daniel. Also, the Nicene Creed (325-381AD) declared "He shall come again with glory to judge both the living and the dead."  Further, in many writings it is stated the Apostle's Creed was divinely given on the day of Pentecost, which states, "He ascended into heaven. From thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead."

So, the events we now call the Rapture-event have been documented prior the establishment of Protestantism. And since I mentioned it as one of the possible story lines, I don't really think it's too far off-topic.

Thank you Mario! But our Princess is in another castle!


I think you may have misunderstood my post.  I'm not disputing the return of Christ as told in the bible.

What I'm talking about is the "Left Behind" phenomenon where believers will disappear from the face of the earth and those left behind will suffer under the Anti Christ.