BrainDead (2016)
7.7/10
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The Insanity Principle: How Extremism in Politics Is Threatening Democracy in the 21st Century 

When Laurel returns to Washington, D.C., to work for her brother, Sen. Luke Healy, she discovers that budgetary disagreements have halted the government, and mysterious bugs are consuming ... See full summary »

Director:

Robert King

Writers:

Robert King (created by), Michelle King (created by) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Mary Elizabeth Winstead ... Laurel Healy
Danny Pino ... Luke Healy
Aaron Tveit ... Gareth Ritter
Tony Shalhoub ... Red Wheatus
Zach Grenier ... Dean Healy
Michael Potts ... Dr. Daudier
Megan Hilty ... Misty Alise
Dominic Fumusa ... Randall Burke
Nilaja Sun ... Breanna Burke
Paige Patterson ... Scarlett Pierce
Dan Bittner ... Hill Staffer Doug
Beth Malone ... Claudia Monarch
Chris McKinney ... Museum Director
Lily Cowles ... Germaine Healy
Lewis Cleale Lewis Cleale ... Senator Spitz
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Storyline

When Laurel returns to Washington, D.C., to work for her brother, Sen. Luke Healy, she discovers that budgetary disagreements have halted the government, and mysterious bugs are consuming the brains of Congress members and Capitol Hill staffers.

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Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 June 2016 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the opening sequence where "A meteor streaks across the sky in Russia" (They used the real footage from the meteor that brightened up the night sky) The 500-kiloton-or-stronger "airburst" over Chelyabinsk on February 15, 2013 (In which over 1500 people were injured from the shock w500-kiloton-or-stronger "airburst" over Chelyabinsk on February 15, 2013ave), created an internet sensation with citizens posting personal cam/dashboard cam footage. See more »

Quotes

Dean Healy: You may hate politics, Laurel, but you're not bad at it.
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Soundtracks

You Might Think
(uncredited)
Written by Ric Ocasek
Performed by The Cars
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User Reviews

Good acting, esp. by lead actress, gives nutty (on purpose) premised satire a solid start
14 June 2016 | by lor_See all my reviews

Gimmicks abound on TV nowadays, as apparently audiences no longer sit still for drama, action or even comedy served up straight. Its crazy horror/sci-fi gimmick is the defect in the otherwise quality show "BrainDead", and my trepidations were only overcome by extremely fine acting.

The still topical issue (underlined by many specific Trump and Hillary quotes on tape here) of a dysfunctional American political system is treated sarcastically by an "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" premise from show's creators. What if a meteor-based invasion from Outer Space, turning Washington, D.C.'s politicians and staff into mindless slaves was achieving what Jack Finney's iconic pods did in that Don Siegel classic film of the '50s (remade several times since)?

With Mr. Monk himself recast as a drunken Republican senator getting the gory (aimed seemingly at a Fangoria audience) takeover treatment, the pilot episode certainly had its shock moments. Our Nancy Drew (explicitly name-dropped) heroine is engaging enough to bring us back to reality no matter how far-fetched and silly the action gets, though overall the series is shaping up already for me to be too close to the facetiousness of a Tim Burton ("Mars Attacks") or the recent shoulda-been-a-lot-better "You, Me and the Apocalypse" miniseries.

Key question, especially for network exec types, is how long can you string out such an absurd concept? "Lost" is the prototypical example of how a narrowly defined series, originally about as expansive as "Gilligan's Island", can be stretched way past its breaking point in order to keep a hit on the air and rake in that moolah. I would put "BrainDead" into the camp of a limited series, with the writers hopefully propelling it sooner rather than later to a slam-bang exciting (and instructive in the vein of speculative fiction) conclusion.


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