This Minority Report review contains spoilers.
Minority Report Season 1 Episode 4
The foundation is still being laid for a deeply interesting conspiracy and an exploration of morality in Minority Report that can make a good sci-fi show great. Even an entertaining procedural can be made more three-dimensional by themes that dig below the surface. The problem with this series is that the more compelling stories – that of Agatha and her manipulations and the Hawkeye program with its potential dangers – are still separate from the crime-of-the-week for the most part. Besides some attempts at heartfelt character moments, “Fredi” is still focused on the wrong things.
These character developments were well presented, actually, but perhaps not as high on potential viewers’ priority lists. Dash’s scenes with Fredi as he talked about the horrors of having grown up in the pre-crime milk baths were powerful, especially with Vega watching and listening. Stark Sands delivers his character’s back story with genuine emotion (although he constantly looks to be on the verge of an allergy attack when during tearful moments), and he and Fredi amazingly had believable chemistry.
Akeela also strangely has the edge on Vega when it comes to fun-to-watch character interactions. Her immediate rivalry with Wally, although predictable, gave her character a richness Vega has yet to attain. Even her eye tattoo being revealed as a facial recognition cheat was a juicy detail. And I definitely enjoyed her memorable defense of lax bros everywhere: “Hey, don’t hate on lacrosse!” Li Jun Li threatens to steal the spotlight from the female lead!
Of course, she might have competition from Agatha as the most interesting character in the series. The eldest pre-cog’s continuing, enigmatic mission to uncover facts (perhaps technical schematics?) about her time in the milk baths is infinitely more interesting than whatever the Metro PD is up to. I love her calm confidence as she compels Charlie to follow a specific path of fate, even after he discovers who she really is.
Are Agatha’s actions being motivated by the prophecy of Vega next to the milk baths? I agree with Dash that her presence in the vision could be as savior rather than captor despite Arthur’s misgivings. However, this week’s crime shows how victim can become perpetrator as quickly as they do on Person of Interest, a show which weaves its crimes together with its conspiracy much more skillfully.
Instead, Minority Report presents the tired old “you’re too close to this one” plotline audiences have seen a thousand times. Dash may be a new employee of the Metro police department, but despite his expertise with murderers, crimes of passion, even when the confrontation is planned, can turn a vengeful innocent into a regretful killer. His partnership with Vega is flawed by design, but when combined with the lack of chemistry, it becomes broken altogether.
And for god’s sake, if Arthur is truly against his brother Dash working with the police, why does he keep helping him? The underground connections and the 3D tissue printer are cool ideas, but the character’s assistance can be a bit convenient at times. I like the pre-cog sibling dynamic and would love to see more of it, but as with other parts of the show, the investigative elements of the show keep interfering with the more interesting characteristics. If the show digs deeper, I’ll sink deeper into my couch on Monday nights.