During a flu outbreak, a federal agent is tasked with bringing in a 10 year old girl for a secret test. After meeting her, his loyalties are tested.During a flu outbreak, a federal agent is tasked with bringing in a 10 year old girl for a secret test. After meeting her, his loyalties are tested.During a flu outbreak, a federal agent is tasked with bringing in a 10 year old girl for a secret test. After meeting her, his loyalties are tested.
Cronin's books, especially the first, are amazingly rich narratives. He won prizes for his literary fiction before he stepped into genre work and The Passage succeeded both as literature and as a first-rate horror tale. The characters and world are vivid and compelling and Cronin does a masterful job of grounding us in the people who walk around in his fictional world. He does this in good part with extensive flashbacks that he weaves through the books, giving us bits and pieces until finally we see the entire picture of who these people are -- the heroes, the villains and even the monsters before they were monsters. He spends quite a bit of time letting us get to know Amy and even something about her mother...but in the pilot, since I guess the creators were so anxious to get to the monsters, all we get are small cliched bits that are clearly intended to make us feel sorry for Amy and therefore feel connected to her. In fact, the major flaw here is that the creators of the pilot attempt to convey in a few on-the-nose lines of dialogue what Cronin took pages to convey to us. I understand that TV is not literature and that the two media work differently and that the creators have to trim off bits and pieces here and there for the sake of efficiency and clarity...but they have cut off too much and so we never really get past the surface of the characters as props in an effort to bring us to the monsters as quickly as we can get there.
I will give this series another chance next week and will watch episode two but I suspect I will give us then and go back and re-read Cronin's original trilogy.
- Jan 15, 2019