Tuesday, December 6, 2011

I Might in "Neverland"

SYFY actually does rather well in these miniseries. I didn't warm to there deconstruction of the Wizard of Oz or Alice in Wonderland because I thought they came off at the end as weirdly flat. Still, I found them watchable with some decent production values and acting. Neverland actually is step up from both of its predecessors. It really comes off as someone went to H.G. Wells and said, "Hey write the origin of Peter Pan but do it in a science fiction way."

So Neverland is now a planet, and magic is weird steampunky science. Cool, I like it. So something bad is happening in Neverland and little spheres are sent to earth. Bang on one and you get your ticket to Neverland where you don't age. So over the centuries pirates and indians have banged the spheres so that's why they are there. Now we are in Victorian London and James Hook, thief and fagin, is after a sphere. He is raising boys including Peter Pan in a life of crime. Well there's some sphere banging and now everyone is in Neverland.

Things aren't happy in Neverland. The pirates want to get the Indians and Fairies because they have plans to use fairy dust for their own purposes. The boys fall in with the Indians and Hook falls in of course with the pirates ruled by the vicious pirate queen. There's more to the plot, but that would be telling.

The thing that really makes this work is Rhys Ifan who plays hook. He has a natural decadent charm to his performance. He's the fellow you KNOW you shouldn't believe, but you can't help falling for it again. This is important because the drama of this piece is in how the relationship between Pan and Hook falls apart but gets put back together again until they reach that stage that we know that Hook will lose his hand to the croc (in this case a multilegged croc) and the two will forever be enemies. Before that, everytime Hook betrays Pan he comes up with something new to put on the table to keep Pan close. It's all very interesting and I could have used even more of that and less of the mysterious heavy.

Overall, fairly good.

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