Alphas: Season 1
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(Apr 17, 2012)
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Top Customer Reviews
With his series ALPHAS, co-created with Michael Karnow, Penn has proved that not only can he craft a really clever "superhero" story, but a very tightly-constructed television show that's both action-packed and whip-smart.
From the outset of the show, we're treated to a number of superhero archetypes: First is Bill Harken (Malik Yoba, the mini-series THIEF, NIKITA) as a gruff former federal agent who has the ability to throw his mental "fight-or-flight" response into overdrive and gain temporary super-strength. Next up is Nina Theroux (Laura Mennell, SUPERNATURAL, FRINGE, SMALLVILLE) as a beautiful young woman who can slightly exert her will on other people mentally. Then we have Rachel Pirzad (Azita Ghanizada, bit parts on shows like CASTLE, BONES, PSYCH, etc.), a very pretty girl from a Middle Eastern family who can enhance her five senses.Read more ›
The latest example is "Alphas," a TV series that focuses on otherwise ordinary people with strange evolutionary quirks like supersenses, influencing minds and "seeing" electronic signals. It's one of those series that is solid and fun, but it feels like it hasn't fully grown into itself just yet -- but the last episode does imply that big things are coming.
The CIA is stumped when a key witness is shot... in an empty room with no windows. The case is handed over to Dr. Rosen (David Strathairn), a scientist who has a special team of "Alphas" -- and they soon determine that the shooter is also an Alpha, Cameron Hicks (Warren Christie), who is being controlled by someone else.
Among the problems the team encounters are: a kid with rage pheromones, a bunch of mystery deaths at a high school, a kidnapped heiress who can only be found with Gary's abilities, a woman who can MacGuyver almost any device from scraps, a cult leader who is slowly destroying his followers, a shape-shifter, and an invisible menace who is stalking a prisoner.
But the biggest problem comes not from Alphas, but from regular humans. A terrorist cell known as Red Flag reveals that our dear government is trying to surreptitiously stamp out or imprison all Alphas, and the tenuous relationship between Dr. Rosen's group and the government becomes more fragile with time. If they can't stop it, war will be the next step.Read more ›
This show renders the idea of neurodiversity--that autism and other "mental disorders" are not diseases so much as they are completely different sets of wiring--through the lens of the super-hero narrative. I'm totally hooked. The characters are complicated and the whole setup is just so smart.
This is not the X-Men: nobody can shoot lasers out of their faces. The powers themselves are much more subtle: incredible aim, heightened senses, almost-prescient ability to predict cause and effect. But the show itself is all the more powerful because it doesn't try to pull out the "big guns." Highly recommended.
The crux of the story is about psychologist Lee Rosen, played to perfection by David Strathairn, and his team of government sanctioned Alphas, people with amazing powers, trying to keep both humans and alphas safe. His team is made up of wonderful characters who are startlingly organic. When they interact with each other, it never comes off as dialogue, but instead natural interaction. You could imagine yourself having theses same conversations with those around you. Writing doesn't get much better than that.
No matter how great the script and dialogue is though, if the performances aren't there to support it, the scripts brilliance can't shine through. Thankfully, the entire cast of Alphas is phenomenal. From Dr. Rosen's constant lectures, to Gary's quirky personality (Ryan Cartwright), Rachel's sensitivity (Azita Ghanizada), Nina's doubt (Laura Mennell), Bill's professional turmoil (Malik Yoba), and Hick's struggle for acceptance (Warren Christie), every emotion and situation the script calls for is flawlessly executed by these talented actors.
Alphas boasts the most impressive first season of any show I have seen since the fantastic "...Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This was the TV version of X-Men. As a group, they had to use their individual abilities to solve situations and learn to work together. Read morePublished 3 months ago by LD
Arrived on time. I really love the show and it's characters and so do my grandsons.Published 5 months ago by Mary
I enjoy Alphas tremendously. There is always so much action taking place behind solid storylines. And the acting is on target. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
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Not a real cliffhanger, but just barely counts as one. You can stop watching whenever you want. The second season has started airing on tv now. The channel that is in control of the show is SyFy, they almost always tend to give a show at least two to three seasons. You should be completely safe,... Read More
Jul 25, 2012 by Alan McAnelly | See all 3 posts
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