So far not one of the plot lines on NBC's Heroes has intrigued me. But Journeyman looks good so far.

So this one chick's power is to kill other people when she gets upset by making mascara run down their faces? What weird-ass gene caused that mutation? Oh and this one dude can fly - just like another character we've already seen. This other dude can heal himself - just like another character we've already seen. This other chick can learn something instantly just by seeing it on television - similar to another character we've already seen. Is there a reason so many powers are being duplicated or just unimaginative writers?

Oh, and Ned Ryerson has joined the cast as a villain. Needlenose Ned? Ned The Head? C'mon buddy is right... Let's see if Veronica Mars can help make things interesting.

The acting is ok in some parts and stinky in others. The writing is mostly full of hackneyed situations used purely for dramatic effect. At the moment, I'd say the only thing Heroes has going for it is that it's a show about people with super powers.

However, because my wife and I still foolishly watch it, we end up catching Journeyman which immediately follows it - a show about Dan Vasser, a guy who starts to travel through time helping people. The catch is that, unlike Quantum Leap, he keeps coming back to the present once he's done helping the people through some chapter of their lives. Unlike Heroes, I think the writing in this one is smart and the acting is above par.

I think it's great that this show actually deals with how inconvenient his "leaps" are to his present-day life, to both his family life and his professional life. His wife is the only one (at the moment) that knows he travels back in time.

I also like the various love triangles that have been set up. It will be interesting to see what they do with it. Clearly this "Livia" was Dan's first love before she went missing and was presumed dead. Now he's happily married to his brother's ex-girlfriend and they have a child together. Oh, and Livia is also a time traveler that follows Dan around occasionally. Lots of entanglements abound.

And this week's episode starts to hint that future plotlines will reveal why/how he's traveling through time when he ends up contacting a professor involved in tachyon research who can possibly talk to him when he's travelling back in time.

So there's lots of avenues for the show to explore (relationships, sci fi elements, the back-story) unlike other similar "wandering helper" shows like Highway To Heaven, Quantum Leap, The Incredible Hulk. Those shows were very episodic and self-contained in nature and primarily focused on the "damsel of the week". Journeyman seems to have more serial drama elements to it (ongoing story arcs).

About my only complaint so far is that I think the novelty of time-travelling to the 90s will wear off soon. We've seen him go back to the 70s once. I hope they gradually start to go a little further back in time (though this would be more costly for the show and more troublesome for the main character in terms of fitting in).

Anyway I'm looking forward to getting into Journeyman's mythology a little more while I wait for Lost to start in February.

§399 · October 17, 2007 · Entertainment, Heroes, Lost, Television · · [Print]

1 Comment to “Heroes? Blah. Journeyman? Yeah!”

  1. mincus says:

    You should read the Time Travelers Wife if you like the inconvenience/jumping back and forth thing. Great book.