Anyone else out there watch it?
Yeah, as a movie, this is highly unsatisfying. I really wish they would've decided whether or not this will be a series or not before now, and just gone ahead with it, and waited to show it as such. Because now we'll wait something like six months or more for any further story development, if any at all, and frankly? That sucks.
But as a start for a series, it works. It sets up the characters, it sets up the world, and dumps a metric ton of questions on you, and answers very little of them. I want to see more just to see where they go with it. It's grabbed me just enough with curiosity to want more. It could be better, but it's definitely not bad either. I'd probably put it at about a six or seven out of ten on a totally arbitrary scale in my brain.
The question of what is real and what isn't is always a fun one to play with. It's also a dangerous one, since it can get very confusing. Mixing all that in with the reality show trappings of the mission (Something I can completely see our culture doing, by the way) was pretty smart. It's a great way to present the idea on multiple levels. That said, I don't know if I could stand the confessionals on a weekly basis in this type of show, and hope they rethink it, or sell me on it better in the future. It worked well for storytelling means, but not so much for the story itself, if that makes sense.
The show also did something I have long, LONG wanted a show to do, and kill off the character being positioned as the main character. Lost toyed with the idea with killing Jack off in the first episode, but decided it would be a tough sell. Buffy played around with killing a minor character in Jesse, but that never really worked as he never really fit with the show in the first place. Most shows if they do it, will do it in the final episode. But doing it now? Hello, raised stakes! I'm all for it, and hooray for a show finally doing it. And hey, they even get to keep him around in the virtual modules, so everyone's happy.
I'm gonna try and steer clear of any major opinions on the sexual assault scene. I'm sure there will be much controversy about it. I think it worked as a way to show the stakes of these virtual incidents, and that it may not harm the body, but really messes with your head. With the various characters having different opinions on it, I'd like to hope they were at least even handed on the topic, but I am far from a good judge of these sorts of scenes. I don't like the subject, it makes me uncomfortable to watch, and talking about it is a minefield in any sort of review, but at the same time, I get what they were going for.
There was one scene that I really hated though. And that was the vote. The captain says that he's made the decision, the mission is a go, they're not turning back. Everyone gets in a snit, and says they should vote on it, it's not right that he should make such a wide decision for them all! Ok, fair enough. It is a pretty huge decision. But then they all vote unanimously to go! There's not even really any debate or fidgeting or waffling by anyone, they're all like, yeah let's go!! Why bother with that, if you're not going to have at least ONE disenting voice. Shouldn't the people saying, "What?! How dare you!!" at least maybe have made arguments for not going?? Totally faked and overplayed drama for the sake of drama that went nowhere.
Those are my major thoughts.