Revolution episode 7 review: The Children's Crusade

Review Billy Grifter 7 Nov 2012 - 12:04

Revolution continues its merry journey through nonsensical events and poorly-thought out premises. Here's Billy's review...

This review contains spoilers.

1.7 The Children's Crusade

I'm developing a sneaking respect for the writers of Revolution. I assume they're paid per episode, and yet of the seven I've seen, more than half have had exactly the same plot. This takes me back to the golden era of the late seventies where narrative was something they considered over coffee just before the cameras rolled. In this respect, Revolution is 'old school', though that time did rely on the leading actors being big names, and not forlorn method performers trying desperately to make any of this horrendous guff seem the slightest bit plausible.

In The Children's Crusade, the gang come across a group of amazingly photogenic children, and get distracted from their actual purpose for at least the sixth time in seven stories.

Aaron references Stephen King's Children of the Corn, but my first reaction was that this has more to do with an original Trek story called Miri, or even William Golding's Lord of the Flies. Except all these sources have a much more interesting story to tell about what happens to kids left to their own devices than this sad offering attempted. Actually, the kids play little or no part in what happens, they're just another excuse for Charlie being impulsive, getting into trouble and being saved by Miles, like she is in every episode.

The episode repeated the premise from just one week back of sending Charlie into danger, because only she can look so dumb that she'd not be seen as a threat. In this case, she infiltrates the soldier factory ship, safe in the assumption that the accommodating militia representative would just punch her out and not rape and kill her. He's remarkably helpful in this respect, as is everyone in the show who is required to do exactly what the characters expect. But then Charlie getting beaten up, abducted and branded for her troubles was pointless anyway because Miles later demonstrated that he could just walk on to the ship, and with the help of a lighthouse distraction, save the day almost without her.

The sequence where the pendant made the lighthouse work was another magical moment in Revolution where nothing about it made any sense. Why would the engine start? By definition a lighthouse is a self contained solution, but it still needs a keeper to actually start the diesel engine. But then the engine would never have stopped running in the first place, because diesel runs through the explosion created when the fuel vapour is compressed, not because of an electronic spark. These are basic facts that appear to evade the writers, in a manner that suggests that they'd rather not think about their premise, knowing it is utter junk. Or, they just don't care while the money keeps coming, take your pick.

The show also has a curious problem with fat people. They made Aaron a coward, and then they added a gravitationally challenged child into this story to hate on some more. Though how either of them could have an enhanced-by-fast-food physique fifteen years after the last burger flipped isn't explained. Maybe they found Hugo's food stash?

So what's the highlight of this episode? It's probably the introduction of Colm Feore (Lord Marshal in The Chronicles of Riddick) as Randall. He's a cookie-cut government bad person, whom we're lead to believe backed the development of the tech that took electricity away. Really? There are some utterly bonkers people in the Pentagon, I'm sure, but how turning the whole world back one-hundred years would help anyone is entirely beyond me, and I'm not expecting any sort of explanation in the near future.

To end on a positive note, after the November sweeps Revolution enters a long sabbatical until late March 2013, which is a break this reviewer for one badly needs. Maybe during this time those behind the show could actually come up with just one story that actually makes sense, but I'm not massively optimistic on that point.

Revolution: the show that made Flashforward look like it was penned by Tennyson.

Read Billy's review of the previous episode, Sex and Drugs, here.

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I have a theory about how the power went off. Having created this super EMP type device, Charlies dad sold it to the DOD. They then employed him to develop it as a weapon, but either ignored some of his advice or he made a mistake, and so when they built a large scale version of the device (designed to turn of the lights in say, China) they did not realise that an unintended side effect would be to turn everything off throughout the whole world. The Dr's Matheson and the rest of the team realised the disaster looming early enough to create a failsafe (the pendants, and whatever they do when all 12 are collected together) but were unable to persuade the DOD to abort or even postpone the activation of the device. And so, on the night they turned it on and everything else off, (the first scene we saw in the pilot) Matheson knew what was going to happen and was semi-prepared.

How come a Tv show spend 95% of its time with nothing new happining and in the end a little clifhanger, and that will not be continued in the next episod

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