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Graduation Present from Me to Me
on August 26, 2013
I remember when this show began in 2008. It looked mildly interesting, but with one thing and another, I never got around to watching it, till this summer, when I went over to my sister's apartment. She and her boyfriend had it on DVD, so she asked if I wanted to watch some of it and thought sure, why not. We watched the first episode and I found it incredibly derivative, but she offered to lend me the first season and I didn't want to be rude, so I accepted. Over the course of the week, I watched it, more out of boredom than anything... then something strange happened. About halfway through season one, I found myself looking forward to each episode. I watched the first season in six days. I then borrowed the other seasons from my sister, and watched the rest of the show in ten days. That's right, I watched a five season, 100-episode show in 16 days, a personal record.
The first half of the first season was rather slow and a ripoff of many such shows that came before, but after that the show dove into its own mythology and really became its own animal, and an awesome one at that. The mythology is fascinating, and the writers manage to make the alternate universes and different timelines original. The characters, which at the beginning were cardboard cutouts of the mad scientist, the stoic cop/agent and the sarcastic Han Solo type, became beautiful subversions of those types of characters, and the actors, especially Anna Torv as the lead, Olivia, improved drastically over the course of the show, to the point where I was very invested in the characters and their various love stories. Needless to say, my attachment to the characters made season five an emotional roller coaster ride. Seasons three and two were the best, in my opinion, but all the seasons were good (except, as noted, the shaky first half of season one).
This show is my new obsession. I'm actually glad I didn't watch it till it had ended because then I got to watch the whole thing in a nearly-uninterrupted, highly-caffeinated nerd marathon. I just received my Associate of Arts degree, so I splurged and got this (and the Collide album "Chasing the Ghost") as a little present from myself, to myself. Oh, me, you know me so well!
Here's how I rate each season:
One: 4/5 stars
Two: 5/5 stars
Three: 5/5 stars (my favorite!)
Four: 4.5/5 stars
Five: 4/5 stars
Overall, I give the show 4.5 stars. If you, like me, never got around to watching it while it was on, do yourself a favor and check it out now! You will not be disappointed.