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‘Resurrection’ Premiere: Should You Give The Mystery Drama A Chance?

Fri, March 7, 2014 1:25pm EDT by Shaunna Murphy 5 Comments

Ever since that show about the island debuted in 2004, ABC — and pretty much everybody else — has been scrambling to recreate a network mystery drama with the same allure and staying power of that particular behemoth. But is ‘Resurrection’ the next ‘Lost’ or just another ‘Flash Forward?’

Resurrection, ABC’s fantasy drama about dead people coming back to life (but not in a Walking Dead sense), enters the world of the living on March 9. Is it worth the effort?

‘Resurrection’ Premiere Review: A Giant Question Mark

There’s good news and bad news, here.

The good, mainly, is that there are only eight episodes in the series’ run, so there is a solid chance that the writers were smart enough to concoct a cut-and-dry story that won’t get lost amidst its wild, fantastical premise. (Heck, even Lost occasionally got lost under the burden of 22-episode seasons.)

The bad, unfortunately, is pretty bad — by the end of the first two episodes made available for review, I still found myself completely unattached to any of the show’s leads, who often come off as stock characters that can be defined by a single trait.

Also, unlike the similar — but completely riveting — French series The Returned, you’re hit right in the face with the show’s central mystery, as well as every single emotion the characters are feeling. Nothing is muted or mysterious like a show about the dead should be; instead everything is bright, soapy, and melodramatic.

Show me don’t tell me, you know?

‘Resurrection’ Premiere: The Basics

Still interested? Here’s what you need to know:

An 8-year-old boy (Landon Gimenez) wakes up in a rice paddy in China, lost and confused and seemingly unable to speak. J. Martin Bellamy, commonly known as Marty (Omar Epps), is the customs and immigration agent assigned to his case. The boy eventually starts talking, and gives away bits and pieces of information — like his name, Jacob, and his hometown of Arcadia, Mo. — that help Marty locate his family home.

Problem is, the Jacob that went “missing” from said home actually died back in the ’70s. His parents, played by Kurtwood Smith (That ’70s Show) and Frances Fisher (Titanic — and she’s actually pretty damn good in the role), have moved on and grown old without him, (“You look different, Mommy!”) and so has everyone else that populates their small, isolated town.

We find out pretty much right away that Jacob’s “death” was never as cut-and-dry as it seemed to begin with — yep, there may have been a murder, here — and when other deaddies start showing up, it becomes apparent that something is very, very wrong with the town of Arcadia.

Resurrection airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on ABC.

What do you think, HollywoodLifers? Will you check out Resurrection, or stick to the French version, The Returned?

— Shaunna Murphy

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