Surface, ITV2

by | Jan 9, 2006 | All, Reviews

Did we like it?

Well it was fairly amiable and had moments of suspense combined with the usual enjoyable cliché-ridden plotlines, so it passed 45 minutes pleasantly enough.

What was good about it?

• The fact that we only saw flashes of these deep sea monsters. We felt sure that they’d panic and give us a proper look before the end of the first episode, but to their enormous credit they resisted and gave us a reason to watch again next week.

• The opening scene with the kid water-skiing at night, falling off and flailing in the dark water was nicely evocative of Jaws.

• When the two kids returned to see if they could find the monster, they took a big loaf of bread to use as bait. It was funny that they knew how to operate a speed boat, were obviously ocean-savvy, but thought that to catch a sea monster a few slices of Hovis would be just the ticket, as if they thought it might be a massive bream. Where was the chum? They needed Roy Scheider to ladle it into the water for hours on end.

• The quite exciting death of a diver when he decided to harpoon a massive creature, which was obscured in a murky sea, only to be carried off by it’s sheer strength.

• The fact that although people have been scared of the creatures and one person died accidentally, the creatures weren’t portrayed as evil or set on world domination.

What was bad about it?

• We’ve said it before, but the use of typed text on the screen to give precise locations is now so hackneyed and redundant it needs to be banned from supernatural TV shows forever.

• The absolutely awful CGI falling snow that fell steadily and was barely moved by the obvious wind and never settled even for a moment anywhere. Dreadful and unnecessary.

• There were so many clichés it was like someone had a checklist to tick off: Good looking female single mother scientist – check. Russian scientist, possibly evil (complete with cliché quote: “I’ve been expecting this”) – check. Kids finding out more than the military – check. Military suppressing details of a phenomenon – check. Something going on in the Arctic – check. Strange glowing lights – check. Eggs – there are more of them! – check.

• Having taken an egg from the sea, the kid then put it in his tank at home where it ate the other fish, then smashed out of the aquarium and ran upstairs. Two things made no sense here. First, the mother seemed only mildly concerned that a whole aquarium had exploded in her front room, and second, that although the creature showed enough violence to break through thick glass walls, the kid thought it a good idea to lock himself in the bathroom with it.

• At the end there was a shower of meteorites landing in the sea near some Mexican fishermen. We hope this doesn’t mean the creatures are aliens – there’s enough scope using the deep sea without dragging aliens into it again.

Luke Knowles

Luke Knowles

09/01/2006

Editor of the website and host of the podcast. A general TV obsessive. I've been running the site since 2008 and you can usually find me in front of the TV. My Favourite show of all time is Breaking Bad with Cracker coming a close second. I feel so passionately that television can change the world and I'm doing my little bit by running this site. You're Welcome!

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