Cast: Noah Wyle, Will Patton, Moon Bloodgood et al.
When a drama or action show goes into its four season it is often with the bated breath of the viewers. What can be accomplished that hasn’t been shown in the three earlier seasons? Will it become redundant and repetitive, like True Blood or Vampire Diaries or will it try to reinvent itself with new cast members and completely different story arcs, very much like the shows Dexter and Breaking Bad, keeping a very basic connection between the seasons. Comedies need not worry about this and are therefore more prone to extended runs as do Criminal Shows devoid of any kind of continuity.
The category of show that Falling Skies belongs to is very dependent on the viewers’ keeping their interest in what happens next. Of course this is true of all dramatic shows or any show at all, but Falling Skies has to fight an uphill battle that other shows might not have to. It’s a Science Fiction show and apart from a handful of shows from the mid-20th century these have always had a more difficult time to find a place amongst the main stream viewers, with the exception of Star Trek or Babylon 5. Maybe because the scenario is so unlikely and that the common viewer has a hard time relating to Science Fiction, why other shows with more or less unlikely settings aren’t as prone to criticism is another discussion entirely and not prevalent here.
What Falling Skies has managed to do so well is drop the story little by little and not reveal the bigger picture, like other TV shows long gone; Flash Forward or Alcatraz. The strength of the cast and the interaction between the characters is also something the writers have managed very well. As the show evolves so do the figures and how they react to the ever changing world around them. The narrative itself is also a strong point. The writers of the show have, as previously mentioned, been very good at not telling the audience the entire story. Sometimes comics released before the season premiers have filled in the blanks and there are events and people mentioned we never see or meet. This coupled with a united America fighting a horde of invaders clearly appeases a more general crowd.
So will season four be able to continue this trend or is it all coming to an end. Unlike a Science Fiction show like V an end does not seem to be close. Shows that have infinite possibilities and plot lines is always more interesting than a show that hints at everything ending once the main character meets the mother of his children.
The main characters are all ambushed and separated within the first minutes leading the tight-knit group to be split in four camps. This gives a new dimension to the main theme of the show; ‘United one can overcome anything’. The storyline is now open to the journey back to unity and rebellion. The story also takes on somewhat of a nod to the Second World War as Tom Mason (Wyle) is placed in a Ghetto-like environment very much like the ones in Poland and his youngest son Ben is being re-educated in the true spirit of the Hitler Jugend.
One must be impressed with the way Falling Skies comes back again and again and it becomes the strength of it all and it seems like every season premier one becomes excited for what may lie ahead, and with all that is going on in the beginning, this might be the best season yet.