February 7th, 2011

breaking bad

Outcasts - no spoilers

I just watched the first episode of Outcasts, the new BBC SF series. My quick verdict is that I think the premise and plot are good, quite intriguing, but the dialogue was awful. People solemnly announcing facts that everyone already knew. But that might just be first episode need to get a lot of exposition out of the way. I hope. We could have understood enough to get by with much less exposition. We didn't need to know that many detailed facts - we could get the general gist - and those we needed to know could have been conveyed more obliquely.

And the description of certain bad things that had happened years before sounded ridiculous as a gloomy speech. It wouldn't have been ridiculous as either flashbacks or a prologue. I would have chosen intrusive chaotic flashback-memories.

I think modern audiences are quite happy to jump in and work things out as they go. British TV execs always underestimate the sophistication of the viewing public, and perhaps particularly how comfortable they are to dive into an SF story, without having every detail explained. Of course there are pedants who want every fact filled in, but most people are happy to wing it.