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"Primeval" Episode #1.2 (2007)

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5 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

"That's the saddest thing I've seen since Matrix Revolutions." Decent second story.

Author: Paul Andrews ( from UK
3 June 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Primeval #1.2 starts on the London Underground where a pest controller (John Gomez) is bitten by a large spider scorpion type monster, he is taken to hospital but dies later that day. Home Office official Claudia Brown (Lucy Brown) is informed & quickly realises that there may be another anomaly, she rounds up Professor Nick Cutter (Douglas Henshall) & the rest of the team who not only discover these spider things crawling everywhere but a huge monstrous centipede type creature which bites Stephen (James Murray). He is taken to hospital but the Doctor's need a sample of the venom to counteract it, somehow they need to get the centipede to give up a sample of it's venom or Stephen will die...

Episode 2 from season 2 of this made-for-British TV sci-fi adventure was directed by Cilla Ware this is a pretty decent way to spend 45 minutes & I thought was slightly better than episode 1. The script by Adrian Hodges obviously has been inspired by numerous giant bugs on the loose type horror films, it also seems to borrow from Aliens (1986) as there are a few scenes of armed soldiers walking through dark corridors as nasty things lurk in the shadows & it has a fair amount of Scream (1996) style self referential film geek dialogue, whether you want to describe it as a homage or a rip-off this episode does have a somewhat familiar feel about it. At a brisk 45 minutes in length it moves along at a nice pace, it's just about long enough to develop a story without outstaying it's welcome & there are some good sequences here particularly the ones involving the huge centipede creature. This is one of those show's where the character's are developed throughout the series in the background even though each show has a distinct storyline within it so it's advisable to watch the series in order otherwise there may a few things that are spoken about or referred too that won't make much sense in the context of a single episode.

Being made for British TV I expected the budget to be low & the special effects poor but that's not the case at all & the CGI computer effects are in fact excellent with the centipede again standing out as an impressive beast. Don't expect a history lesson though, the monsters used in the series up to now have been totally fictitious. It would have been cool if there were more attacks on passenger trains as it would have been more effective since millions of people use the underground & can relate to it rather than confining the action to a bland faceless room. The acting is alright but nothing overly special although the star of the show are definitely the monsters. Interestingly, or not as the case may be, the recap at the start of this episode contains footage that's not actually present in the first story.

Primeval #1.2 is a good episode, it won't change your life or anything but it'll pass 45 minutes harmlessly enough. Worth a watch if there's nothing else on.

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Prehistoric bugs in the Underground

Author: Tweekums from United Kingdom
22 April 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

After the adventures in the opening episode Connor can't keep quiet about what he has seen and tells a couple of friends… inevitably they don't believe his story and decide to play a joke on him. This leads Connor to go to the New Forest with Abby to investigate a monster sighting; it soon becomes apparent that they have been the victims of a hoax and when Cutter learns that Connor has been talking about what they have seen he loses his place on the team. Meanwhile a worker is attacked by a giant bug from the carboniferous period. A team of Special Forces soldiers is sent down but they are soon chased off. Connor, Stephen and Abby head down to the area where the creatures are seen and as well as the spider-like creatures they see a giant centipede that leaves Cutter trapped. Stephen goes back down to find him but is bitten by the centipede; while he lies on the ground he is approached by Helen Cutter… is she really there or is he hallucinating? Desperate to find out exactly what the creature is Connor is brought back in because of his encyclopaedic knowledge of prehistoric creatures.

This was a solid second episode; it was interesting that we didn't have more dinosaurs and the giant creepy-crawlies were suitably scary… a scariness helped by the claustrophobic setting. There was a good level of threat to the protagonists; being only the second episode no character, with the possible exception of Cutter, could be considered established enough to guarantee their survival. The subplot involving Connor telling his friends about what he has seen wasn't strictly necessary but it provided some laughs and got him some time alone with Abby… even though that didn't go quite how he hoped. The scene at Abby's flat was also a bit unnecessary; it seemed as though it was just there to show Hannah Spearritt walking around in her knickers and a vest… Abby is a good enough character without turning her into 'Little Miss Fan Service'! The monster effects were pretty good, especially given that they were made for a TV series almost ten years ago. The question of Helen Cutter's fate is once again returned to; clearly this is going an ongoing mystery which I am finding intriguing. Overall I'd say this was a good second episode; it has plenty of scary moments and just the right amount of humour.

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