The Tomorrow People – Pilot

by Alan Rapp on October 11, 2013

in Television Reviews 

  • Title: The Tomorrow People – Pilot
  • IMDB: link

The Tomorrow People - Pilot

Based on the British sci-fi shows of the same name, The Tomorrow People stars Robbie Amell as troubled high school student Stephen Jameson who discovers his odd behavior and bizarre sleep walking has an even more bizarre explanation. Stephen is approached by a secret group of genetically advanced individuals known as the Tomorrow People with the abilities of teleportation, telekinesis, and telepathy – abilities all of which Stephen also possesses and only unconsciously has begun to tap into.

Cara (Peyton List) and John (Luke Mitchell) tap Stephen and explain his father (Jeffrey Pierce) started the group before abandoning them along with his wife (Sarah Clarke) and both of his sons. Not a fan of his deadbeat father, or initially accepting of the life the group is presenting to him, Stephen rejects the group’s offer to join at least until he meets the people the Tomorrow People are running from. Although the group are blessed with impressive powers they also have an evolutionary weakness as they are incapable of killing (which is an attempt to keep the scales balanced, but is kind of dumb especially when you consider how many loopholes would be involved).

Those like Stephen who have mutated and evolved into something beyond homo sapiens are hunted by Ultra, a shadowy government agency whose purpose is to find and contain (and even eliminate) anyone showing signs of these abilities. Aside from Stephen being the prodigal son, his situation is unique because Ultra is run by his uncle Dr. Jedikiah Price (Mark Pellegrino), who like the Tomorrow People, is interested in the level of power that Stephen has begun to show. Taken captive by Ultra, Stephen is rescued by Cara, John, and Russell (Aaron Yoo), but to get real answers about his missing father and protect his mother and little brother (Jacob Kogan), he will agree to join Ultra and hunt down others of his kind.

The Pilot episode sets up the world, rules, and the unique situation Stephen finds himself in given his genetic lineage. Although the teleporation effects look good, both the writing and acting could use a bit of a polish. The episode spends quite a bit of time of characters who may be important plot pieces, such as Stephen’s best friend Astrid (Madeleine Mantock) and his mother and brother, but I can’t see any of them playing that big a role as his story continues to progress. Taking Jed up on his offer, while still trying to be true to Cara and the group who approached him first (without attacking him), Stephen is eventually going to have to make a real decision between Ultra and the Tomorrow People (which, let’s be honest, isn’t going to be that hard of a decision).

mary October 12, 2013 at 8:57 am

You are being too hard on this. The effects kicked ass, it set up a Stephen-Cara-John love triangle and split loyalties well between Stephen and his uncle. I do agree they made a mistake of setting up the rules of the powers only to have Stephen break them all in the first episode but if he’s gonna be the show’s Neo its okay I guess.

Alan Rapp October 12, 2013 at 6:03 pm

Mary, I think any show that breaks its rules in less than 5 minutes after introducing them has some issues to work out. I also felt that involving Stephen’s entire extended family into things was more than a little bit of overkill (and why did the uncle kidnap him so forcefully when he had to know the calmer approach he used later would be far more effective?).

And the inability for them to kill could get ridiculous very fast. Does this mean they couldn’t even accidentally do so or through some kind of accident (such as a car wreck they are involved in)? I think it has much in common with something like Alphas, which had an okay premise but never learned how to get the best out of it.

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