TV Review: “Defiance”: A Smorgasbord of Mediocrity

Written by Alex Bowman May 11, 2013

When I first heard about a television show that was going to be tied in with a video game I immediately latched on to what I thought was a brilliant, ground-breaking concept. Then the logic train started to chug along and I started to happily punch holes in this inevitable downward spiral whilst chuckling like a mad man at the thought of the media industry getting any more asinine. However, my curiosity got the better of me and I decided to watch the first few episodes of “Defiance” in an attempt to understand what exactly this show is all about. Basically, if you have ever viewed anything related to science-fiction (or hell, even a crappy Western flick) then you know exactly what you are in for when you watch “Defiance” and shuffle along with the bad acting, boring concepts and GOD-AWFUL CG EFFECTS.

“We Call it Defiance.”

The plot for this show is so fucking convoluted and derivative that it makes my skull-meat hurt: A bunch of aliens land on Earth, try to take it over and then just give up because the puny humans asked nicely. Several decades later the humans and aliens are trying to live in harmony and the story centers around lead character Joshua Nolan (Grant Bowler) and his adopted daughter Irisa (Stephanie Leonidas) as they shuffle along getting into random shenanigans of the week.

Nothing but Shtako

I want to make one thing clear before I start this full-length slap fest: I hate it when shows try to be pretentious and come up with new words to replace shit or fuck. I hated it when “BattleStar Galatica” did it and I hate it when “Defiance” does it. It is not unique or creative; it is annoying and unnecessary. Now that that is out of the way we can get back to talking about why this show is a failure from frame one.

“Defiance” tries its best to create an epic sci-fi adventure with a new yet familiar world full of bright colors and interesting characters. This show is the exact opposite of that; it’s a world we care nothing about because it looks as fake and sterile as George Lucas’ wet dreams, it has a cast of characters whose names should all be replaced with “copy/paste” and the story is so poorly told that you will need the show’s wiki page open beside you so you can make quick references during commercial breaks. This show makes “Game of Thrones” easy to follow and that book comes with a fucking appendix.

Defiant Against Success

What really kills me about this show is the fact that the first few episodes are all the same and it really highlights the shows mediocrity on a constant, un-ending basis. Every actor looks like they are reading off of cue cards and are as emotionally invested in the story as a rock is with oxygen. It is also painful to watch actors like Tony Curan and Graham Greene attempt to give a shit with their performances looking like they are having the least amount of fun as humanly possible.

The writing in this show is “frakking” terrible; the pilot tries its hardest to remind us that there are seven different alien races we have to keep track of and soon the show will start throwing at your face all of the race’s differing religions, ideologies and customs with the high speed velocity of a formula-1 car. Trust me, your eyes will start to glaze over and you will soon be fantasizing about bathroom breaks as the show prattles on with what it thinks is entertaining mythologies but what is actually just terrible padding. “Defiance” also tries its best to attempt character development which comes off as a piss-poor attempt to drive the plot along. The Deus Ex Machina fairy makes this show her bitch because there are so many plot contrivances and conveniences it will make you weep for what is next in the world of science-fiction.

Defiantly Derivative

“Defiance” has one flavour and that flavour is… meh. It may have had some semblance of potential but those hopes were executed swiftly after the 3rd episode which reminds us that it will forever be stuck in the middle of the road without any hope of being original or satisfying. The creators knew they were giving us shtako and they sure delivered. All the ingredients were here to make a great sci-fi show but the first impression of “Defiance” shows us that it needs to stay in the oven because it is still half-baked.

My Rating: 4/10

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