The Dead Zone: A Very Dead Zone Christmas

Santa: "I was checking out the chimney. Looks like a slam dunk."

This episode started out very well: cynical, clever, and funny. I was even thinking that absence had made my heart grow fonder. But in the last fifteen minutes, it got so aggressively heartwarming that it was outright painful. I actually winced when the snow started to fall. And I think that snowball fight might be the corniest scene they've ever done.

Yes, some of it was fun. I like Alex the psychic. She's a fascinating type of love interest for Johnny to have, and the two of them click as a couple. I always enjoy Bruce, too. He had some great lines in the early scenes, and it was fun seeing him do Betty Crocker. And it was great seeing the entire cast together, because it just doesn't happen often enough.

But a lot of it just didn't work. The level of amnesia that "Santa" had was serious, not something that could be dismissed as just a blow on the head. They also never addressed why the mother had taken the three boys away from their father. She had breast cancer, not schizophrenia. What if she had a damned good reason? Plus, the characters kept leaving the house and going back to the house, and leaving the house and going back to the house. The story just didn't flow.

"A female psychic, a Santa Claus with amnesia, and the cast of Oliver." Did it suffer from too many plotlines? Maybe just doing one or two, and a lot more thoroughly, would have made for a more coherent story. They could have definitely left out the Santa thing. I rarely guess stuff, but I figured out that he was an actor early on. Why didn't Johnny and Alex see the cameras in their visions? They see everything else.

This just didn't feel like The Dead Zone to me. Damn it. I hate writing negative reviews.

Bits and pieces:

— Despite the corny quotient, I liked that J.J. gave up three of his presents for the other boys.

— Yes, they actually gave us chestnuts roasting on an open fire.

— It might have helped if they had toned down the overly aggressive Christmas music. C'mon. Subtlety, people.

— Anthony Michael Hall has gone completely blond. It looks good on him.

— This episode included a dedication "To Michael. 1948-2005." Rest in peace, Michael Piller. You will be missed.

Quotes:

Bruce on the turducken: "It's kind of like, oh, Colonel Sanders meets Frankenstein type thing."

Alex: "You mean the fictional character created by New York City merchants at the turn of the century to encourage people to buy material goods?"
Bruce: "I can't hear this."

At one point, Johnny said, "There's still time." Pretty much the Dead Zone mantra.

Johnny: "Why didn't I marry you? Oh, right. I was in a coma." Is that the extent of the Johnny/Sarah relationship now? That was just sad.

One out of four stars,

Billie
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Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

it started good, but i can say it was a bad episode. Only bad episode i have seen so far.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with the review. Though the Christmas song at the end was a very depressing version of the song. It felt like a sad blues song. I also have to say for me the episode got worse for me sooner. It was quite evident with amnesia Santa vision's that they were acting scenarios. The first one almost seemed like a James.Bond scene only because the way they filmed it, I knew it was not suppose to be a real crime vision. With the second vision I knew he was an actor. This vision seemed like a private eye, almost like Magnum P. I. I think for me realizing he was an actor sooner made me start being disappointed sooner.