A new show called Revolution, produced by J.J. Abrams, is making its television debut on September 17, but NBC has already put the pilot online so you can watch for yourself if you like.
I did watch, and I’ll tell you about it but I warn you, there are spoilers aplenty ahead. So watch the pilot, then come back and chat with me!
While Revolution is not specifically billed as a crime show, it is about a sudden blackout that turns off all the power—all the machines, electricity—everything. This was clearly a crime, and like most crime shows, the episodes themselves take us on a quest to find out who did it and why.
The episode starts with a flashback where Ben Matheson comes home and tells his wife to fill the bathtubs and sinks with water. She says, “It’s happening, isn’t it?” We only know the “it” she is referring to is the blackout because we saw the promo beforehand.
Then we see two men in a car talking, the driver (Billy Burke, most recently Philip Stroh in The Closer finale) gets a call from his brother—the same Ben trying to warn him. It’s too late. The blackout occurs.
Then we move 15 years into the future where we learn that nothing has worked since the blackout—no cars, no electricity, no batteries. There is no medicine. Governments have fallen. Militias have formed. As one character tells us, ‘The world went insane and nobody knows why.”
Ben’s children—Charlie (a girl) and Danny (a boy) are now teenagers and able to hunt, fish, and help their family live off the land. Their mother is now dead. Ben has a girlfriend and his kids don’t like her very much.
The militia shows up looking for Ben and his brother Miles. Ben gives a little metal thing to his friend Aaron before he talks to the milita. We don’t know where Miles is. A fight ensues and Ben is killed. The militia team takes Ben’s son, Danny instead. The man behind this militia is named General Sebastian Monroe, but his lackey responsible for kidnapping Danny is called Neville.
Ben’s last words before he dies are to tell his daughter, Charlie, to find Miles at a bar in Chicago. Miles will help her rescue Danny.
Charlie sets off with her dad’s girlfriend, and her dad’s friend Aaron who still has the little metal thingy.
Unbeknownst to Charlie, Danny tries to escape. A woman hides him for a few hours in her house. As soon as the militia shows up she caves pretty quickly and lets them in. Danny is recaptured.
After some mishaps, including a rescue by a dashing gentleman about Charlie’s age, Charlie and friends find Uncle Miles. Alas, the dashing gentleman has double-crossed them all and brings the militia to the bar. Miles is able to fight the men off with some help from Charlie and friends. The fight is a little unrealistic.
Miles decides he will join Charlie in her search for Danny and then flashes back to where he was when the blackout occurred. After the car stopped, he and his buddy walk back to a Marine base. Miles is a sergeant and his friend who was in the car with him and heard the phone call from Ben, is Sergeant Sebastian Monroe—the militia leader who wants Ben and Miles captured.
Miles, Charlie, Ben’s girlfriend, and Aaron go off in search of Danny.
We see General Monroe reading a message saying Ben is dead and Danny is captured. It’s hard to tell how Monroe feels about this.
At the end of the pilot we see the woman who helped Danny in her attic. She pulls out a device exactly like the one Ben gave Aaron. She turns it on, and it starts a generator with a light and a computer. This gives her basic text access to the Internet. She tells her contact at the other end of the computer that the militia came to her house.
Her contact asks, “Did they find it?”
She responds, “No.”
And the episode ends.
So what do we know by the end of the pilot?
General Monroe wants Miles and Ben because he thinks they know something about the blackout. They probably do know something about the blackout. Monroe is clearly bad. His henchman, Neville, seems pretty bad as well.
At least three people have devices like the one Ben handed Aaron before he died:
2) The woman who tried to help Danny;
3) The person she tried to contact at the end.
The devices are mini-generators—Ben and/or a team knew the blackout would happen and planned ahead.
Aaron tells Charlie that he used to work at Google before the blackout. This means he is our tech wiz who probably can help explain what we need to know in future episodes about the tech aspects.
Ben’s girlfriend is not in the bio section on the website, so I’m guessing maybe she is eliminated in the next episode. Either that or the NBC webmaster made a mistake.
Based on this I will probably watch at least one more episode. What do you think? What else do we know? Will you watch an episode or two of Revolution? Or is there simply too much competition out there this fall?
Read all posts by Deborah Lacy for Criminal Element.