A young man wakes up from a 12-year coma to discover new abilities that come to propel him into the middle of a dangerous conspiracy.A young man wakes up from a 12-year coma to discover new abilities that come to propel him into the middle of a dangerous conspiracy.A young man wakes up from a 12-year coma to discover new abilities that come to propel him into the middle of a dangerous conspiracy.
Like many of the other early reviews here, I binge watched this series over the New Years holiday.
I went into 'Beyond' thinking it was likely campy, breezy, sci-fi with an eye toward a YA demographic (similar to Freeform's 'Shadowhunters', a guilty pleasure if you're in the right mood).
However, this show takes itself more seriously-the violence in the early episodes is much more realistic. As is the bickering that goes on in the lead character's family. Additionally, there are more serious background themes present here concerning the exploitation of grief by religion and commerce, as well as the common experience of PTSD by former soldiers. Heady stuff, for this kind of show. That this show takes itself more seriously, however, is not really a good reason to watch it. The early episode violence is gratuitous, to the point that it doesn't even make sense by the end of the series; and the background issues remain firmly in the background.
The central conceit of the show is that after recovering from a 12-year coma, the lead character Holden is plagued by mysterious visions, supernatural experiences, recruitment attempts by bizarre cultists, as well as the attention of a beautiful and mysterious woman who wants to help protect him from all of these other things.
With each episode, more memories from Holden's time in his coma are revealed. Whether these memories are dreams, near-death experiences, or actual memories of time spent in purely spiritual world slowly becomes clearer over the course of the episodes. The way in which Holden's memories are revealed, and their relation to the cult and his mysterious guardian are what pulls you into the story. Along the way, there are also some really well done bits concerning Holden's romance with another coma victim, as well the appearance of random characters, such as a movie obsessed pharmacist, that make the unfolding of Holden's story rather more enjoyable than it probably ought to be.
By the end, frankly, none of it makes a damn bit of sense, making a scene from Holden's middle episodes romance all the more foretelling. In that scene, after catching a fish with his paramour, he lets it go, much to her amazement-the moral being that it is about the effort/journey, not the result/destination. As long as you keep that in mind, and don't bother trying to make sense of the series as a whole, 'Beyond' is an enjoyable ride.
- Jan 3, 2017