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Paradox (BBC TV SF detective series)

Discussion in 'Books' started by Anthony G Williams, Dec 3, 2009.

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  1. Anthony G Williams

    Anthony G Williams Greybeard Writer

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    Paradox (BBC TV SF detective series)

    I have a major concern about this new series, since I've never found one which so strenuously avoids being watched. I missed most of the first episode due to my supposedly idiot-proof new digital recorder deciding to record only the last twenty minutes of the hour-long episode. I initially assumed that I'm just a higher grade of idiot than they allowed for, but in view of subsequent events I'm beginning to wonder. This failure did prompt me to investigate BBC's iPlayer, which provides access via their website to any of their output for the previous seven days. I had thought I'd need to watch it online, but discovered that I could download it and watch it on TV, given the right connections. One connecting lead later, plus much fiddling with computer settings accompanied by the traditional grumblings and cursings, eventually produced a result. The picture didn't occupy the whole screen but it was acceptable and at last I could see the whole episode.

    For the second episode I was prepared. I not only checked carefully that the digital recorder was set for the full hour, I also set the DVD recorder to provide a backup. The next morning I checked the digital device - complete blank. So I sneered at it and congratulated myself on my thoroughness until I checked the DVD - also a complete blank. So it was back to the iPlayer again, except that this very shy series had evidently found out about this back-door route as the screen kept going black, but I discovered that hitting the ESC key brought it back again. I await with interest next week's happenings; will the iPlayer crash altogether this time?

    Anyway, what's this reluctant show all about? The two principal characters are a scientist monitoring satellite data who finds that mysterious images giving fragmentary views of disasters keep being downloaded from a satellite, and the police detective he calls in to help identify them. Together they discover that the disasters haven't happened yet, and race (with varying degrees of success so far) to piece together what, where and who in order to try to prevent them.

    This is looking like a classic piece of TV hokum. So far there is no indication of how this might be happening, or why only images of disasters are shown, or why the images show random close-ups which provide just enough evidence to lead the detective to the spot, or why all the disasters happen so conveniently close to their Manchester base. The scientist is unconvincing, displaying a rather creepy and enigmatic air of mystery instead of going off his trolley as any sensible person would, but fortunately the detective is played by Tamzin Outhwaite who is always worth watching (and not just for the usual male reasons - stop s******ing at the back!).

    Perhaps the explanation for the difficulty in seeing the show is that it has acquired artificial intelligence and is too ashamed to be reviewed? Well, it's not all bad; there's a lot of drama in the race to piece together the evidence, interspersed with scenes of those involved heading unknowingly towards their disasters. If you can park your critical faculties and accept the preposterous premise at face value it becomes quite exciting. It could be one of those series that turns out to be so silly that it becomes addictive. I'll stick with it for the time being to see how it goes - provided of course that it decides to let me watch it (come on, now, it's not such a bad review, is it?).[​IMG]


    (This entry is cross-posted from my science-fiction & fantasy blog.)
     
  2. Tim

    Tim Creative Writer

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2005
    Location:
    England
    I watched the first episode on iplayer myself. I keep forgetting the second episode is on there too. (I have no live tv as such here, but like you, connect my pc to my audio/video equipment to 'throw' the video/audio onto a big telly used for this purpose only.)

    I read something somewhere yesterday with the commenter on the series suggesting the time slips were caused by the Hadron Collider, which seemed to be suffering from weird damage that was obviously the machine trying to stop its creation. Or maybe he was implying the series needed killing off much as is happening............

    http://www.crimetraveller.co.uk/default.asp?css= <<--- This was also mentioned too as comparible in existence and possible longevity (or not) to Paradox.
     
  3. Anthony G Williams

    Anthony G Williams Greybeard Writer

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2007
    Location:
    UK
  4. Tim

    Tim Creative Writer

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2005
    Location:
    England
    Ah, another one I haven't watched but know about. The world stops as people see into the future, then we have episode after episode with people flashbacking on what they have seen and how their life runs because of their vision. I got the feeling that show was aimed at the masses rather than the scifi fans and that I wouldn't enjoy it. When half or a full series has been aired I'll read the reviews in the usual places and decide whether to have a marathon session watching the whole thing in one go.
     
  5. Rockstar21

    Rockstar21 Cadet

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2009
    Location:
    Scotland
    Hello everyone.

    I have been watching Paradox. I watched the first two episodes on Iplayer because I forgot to watch when they were on TV, and I have watched the most recent two on television.

    Other members have said that they find the show sort of poorly made, and as one person said "The scientist is unconvincing." I actually feel quite the opposite. I've really been enjoying this show, I find the character of Christian King the most appealing, probably because in my opinion, there's something intriguing and yet almost inhuman about him. His character is dark and mysterious, and a little creepy too, and that's what i like. I also feel that he is most effectively portrayed character, but that's just my opinion, and it's not to say that the other actors are bad. As for the other characters, I don't have an awful lot to say. There are no characters that I dislike, but this leads to the flaws I have spotted in the program...

    1) It is difficult to become emotionally attached to these characters, and as a result of this, they are all quite hard to relate to. It's almost as if the first episode focussed entirely on the action rather than character relationships and establishing a bond between characters and audience, and by the second episode, or third, they tried to change that, and make them play equal roles. Sadly, it hasn't quite worked. Despite this, I think that episode four has brought me closer to feeling that emotional attachment, particularly towards Christian and also Rebecca.
    2) In the end of episode two (I think) Rebecca questioned Christian in the lab, after he said "It's not over." She asked him more than once, "How do you know that, Christian? How do you know?" or something like that, and the episode ended there. However, when the third episode started we weren't shown his response. It's probably quite a minor detail, but it was just something I noticed.

    Let me know your thoughts. I'm so sorry I've written so much, but it's been four weeks and I can't find anybody I know who watches it, or else I would just have told them all of this stuff! lol.
    Thanks, guys.
    x
     

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