Highlander: Sins of the Father

Duncan: "Interesting style, chasing an unarmed opponent on horseback and taking his head."

This was the first of the immortal babe audition episodes.

So Adrian Paul had pretty much checked out, and the series was limping to an end. The producers wanted to do a spin-off. Of course they did. And what did the suits decide? That they were going to ignore the most popular character in the series and go with a new, female immortal. Another great decision to go with offing Richie, and just as successful.

I have to say, though, that giving a series of actresses an episode of their own to see if they could pull it off was an interesting idea. Would they have the necessary charisma? Any acting ability whatsoever? The requisite athleticism, especially with a sword? Compelling immortal flashbacks? Really great hair?

So let's rate candidate number one, Dara Tomanovich as Alex Raven, on these five qualities.

1. Charisma, yes. She was definitely stunning and exotic-looking, with a subtle, unidentifiable accent. Great cheekbones.

2. So-so actress (she couldn't quite pull off that PMS line).

3. She was tall, long-legged, and athletic, and she threw herself into the swordplay. She looked really good on a horse as well as a motorcycle. She mostly wore black and white. I particularly liked whatever she was almost wearing in the 1796 flashback. Was that a chemise and drawers? (See, I've read romance novels.)

4. The flashbacks were actually fairly good, too, although Max was a more compelling character than she was. Making Alex two thousand years old allowed for lots of flashbacking possibilities. The only thing we really learned about her, though, was that in 1796, she'd been in love for the first time in a hundred years, and it hadn't ended well. And that she cared enough for Max to raise him and stay in his life until he was an old man.

5. She indeed had a ton of beautiful brown hair.

If they had picked her, would I have watched the spin-off? Probably not. Adrian Paul left some massive shoes to fill. Doing what was essentially the same series but with a female lead was pointless, and there was nothing that special about Alex. At least not that we could see from a single episode.

Flashbacks:

— 1796 France. Alex killed an unarmed immortal who had murdered her lover. Duncan decided not to get involved. The quickening was exceptional, with an all-white theme: white horse, white water, white sexy undies. And hey, nipples. We don't get enough nipples with quickenings, that's for sure.

— 1942 Warsaw. Low rent Schindler’s List plot, with Alex's lover David leaving his young son Max a difficult legacy.

— There was a long flashback montage to many of the duels Duncan fought with his Katana sword. Probably intended to (1) fill time and (2) point out that Duncan still isn't using his sword.

Bits and pieces:

— Still no Methos or Amanda. No Joe, either. At least there was a good bit of Duncan, although he was shoehorned awkwardly into the plot; his friendship with the elderly banker didn't seem to be in character.

— I wonder if the spin-off title Highlander: The Raven had something to do with Alex Raven? It made no sense for Amanda.

— This is probably a "duh" but it occurred to me during the flashback to the duels that Adrian Paul has probably filmed more duels than any other actor who has ever lived.

This is actually one of the better auditions. Two stars,

Billie
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Billie Doux knows that there can be only one. And that's Methos.

2 comments:

Dustin said...

Her name totally explains why the spinoff was called Raven - makes a lot more sense than Amanda suddenly being called Raven.

I might have watched a spinoff with this character. I did like how in the fight scene with the baddies she looked believable at the hand to hand combat.

I also like that they didn't make her an actual love interest. Sure Duncan asked her out at the end of the episode, but too often in TV shows they always push the love interest angle.

The nipples were surprising. They must have been edited out of the US broadcast.

Shane Brannon said...

I liked this episode as I thought it showed the potential of a show with a female lead.

But really, she's over 1900 years old and she's never learned how to crack a safe by hand?