I Don’t Think I Can Finish Powers

My girlfriend has already given up.  We’re one episode away from completing the season, and she’s called it quits.  Doesn’t even care what happens in the finale, and I can’t say that I blame her.

I really wanted to like the show, I truly did.  It’s based off a comic by Brian Michael Bendis, who I’m a fan of, it stars Sharlto Copley, who is a terrific actor, and I’m just generally a comic nerd, so I wanted the show to be good.  Unfortunately, it just really really is not.

It lies elsewhere, actually.

It lies elsewhere, actually.

So what’s so bad about this show?  Well, for starters, it lacks any compelling main characters whatsoever.  I suppose that is supposed to be a selling point when it comes to the show, in so much that a theme is that even superheroes are really fucked up people in this world, but it just makes you dislike all the characters.  They’re all shitty people who treat each other like shit and act selfishly all the time.  Sharlto’s character, Christian Walker, is an ex-hero who lost his powers and now works as a cop in the Powers Division of the police department.  He’s our main protagonist, but he acts like a dick to everyone around him, even his new partner, and he just comes off as a surly cunt.  We’re supposed to want to follow his journey?  Every character is like this, and it. is. grating.

Even in promos, you can feel their dickishness.

Even in promos, you can feel their dickishness.  It oozes out of them.

Then there’s the effects on the show.  For a show about a world full of super-powered individuals, they really did a poor job on the effects.  I appreciate that they did some practical wire work when characters would fly, but they actually looked like they were hanging from wires and it was just poorly done.  Then when the character Wolfe (played by Eddie Izzard) would eat people, yes literally eat people, there would be these cheesy blood flying everywhere effects that were just over the top and looked terrible.  Zora’s powers look like a Playstation loading screen, which I wonder if they did on purpose, and there are strange ring-shockwave powers that Walker and Wolfe exhibit later that look flat out ridiculous.

And I’m not going to get too far into the plot in case someone still wants to watch the show, but I’m just going to say that it is unfocused at best.  I think that they should have focused on one or two aspects of this season, but instead they have multiple story lines running like the Sway drug on the street, Wolfe supposedly having Walker’s powers, Calista insisting that she’s a power, Retro Girl starting a young power foundation, Zora gaining notoriety, the light that deactivates power, and ugh… I’m exhausted just listing them.  They all just make the show feel scattered.  Also, character decisions are often baffling and inconsistent.  Again, avoiding potential spoilers just in case anyone still cares, but so many things they do just don’t make much sense.

Her storyline is just the worst.  If she wasn't in the show at all, I actually think it may have been a lot better.

Calista’s storyline is just the worst. If she wasn’t in the show at all, I actually think it may have been a lot better.  But I could cut a whole bunch from this season.

As I said before, I really wanted to like this show.  I think the premise is cool and the cast is generally talented, but if they decide to continue on with a second season, it absolutely needs some character changes, possibly even new writers, and more money invested in the effects.  I’ll probably still finish it at some point, but it’ll only be after half a bottle of something or other.  If they don’t do a second season, I’ll totally understand why.  Then maybe Sharlto can go do a second A-Team movie!  If only… But yeah, this show sucks.  Sorry, Sharlto, it’s not your fault, man.

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