I’m a Star Trek Next Generation-lovin’, RoboCop-ing, Matrix-tripping fan. From artsy Terry Gilliam’s “Brazil” to the pop-trash-tastic-ness of “Total Recall.” If its about attacking alien insects (“Starship Troopers”) or just plain “Aliens” (with the exception of “Resurection.”) Hell, I even sometimes enjoy the future Governor’s of America piece that is “Predator.” (Still waiting on Action Jackson to run for governor of Michigan.)
And then there’s “Star Wars,” of which I like in principle, but hate in actual execution, save “The Empire Strikes Back.” I’m sorry, I’ve tried to like it. The mythical metaphors are fascinating to no end, but please, future men I might date or marry, don’t ever make me watch any of it ever again.
That said, I LOVE Terminator. I love the crazy violence and fear of the first movie. The mom/son intensity and special effects of the second. Hell, I even liked the third one. Although it really, really could have used more violence. You know. Just to keep the legend alive.
So it was with both fear and excitement I took to watching Fox’s new “Terminator: The Sarah Conner Chronicles.” Aside from the needlessly long title the show actually did not suck. And it only took a billion commercials during the Cowboys/Giants game to get me to watch it. I could not keep hearing the opening drums of the Terminator series’ impending doom musical score and resist the temptation to watch.
I’m happy to report that it was a decent show. It could have been better, but NO SUCKING! Remarkable. And some of the sheer terror of having to fight an unkillable killing machine transfered onto the small screen.
I’ve always appreciated how Terminator throughout the movies stayed true to the storyline that you should never, ever attempt to fight a Terminator head up unless you are actually a Terminator yourself. The show continued this tradition of fight n’ flee. It irritated me how in the second Matrix suddenly everyone was fighting the agents head on. It killed the tension once even Trinity and Morpheus were fighting them without fear.
But I digress. The woman filling Linda Hamilton’s shoes was good. I even sort of half liked the kid who played John. And Summer Glau, of another Sci-Fi show “Firefly,” made a great, creepy, but friendly Terminator. After all, she played good “crazy” on “Firefly/Serenity.” And she gets to join that heralded lexicon of tiny super white women on Sci-fi TV shows, a la Sarah Michelle Gellar in the titular “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.” The pilot had next to nothing resembling dialog, but how could there be time to talk when an unkillable robot is trying to kill you. It could have used a little more suspense. And some plot exposition. And, of course, dialog. But on action alone, it’s worth watching.
Oh, and it was hard to initially be scared of a Terminator that wasn’t my former governor Arnold S., Robert Patrick or Kristanna Lokken. Something about the three of them just said, run for your fucking life! This new Terminator seems all boxy in the chest area and weird. And he’s unattractive, which is really the opposite of what the cyborgs have been in the franchises history. But I’m sure I’ll get used to him. Hell, maybe he’ll eventually become scary.
That said, the show’s premiere continues tomorrow after my favorite show featuring criminals. “Prison Break” returns Monday after a brief, strike break, to burn off the last five episodes of the season.