Alias: The Complete Second Season
This show was created by J.J. Abrams, the same guy who created the torturous "Felicity", which essentially makes this an obnoxious cross between "Felicity" and "James Bond". See, Sydney Bristow (Jennifer Garner) is equivalent to Felicity, except that she kicks a lot of ass in the hours spent away from school.
In addition, this show is like a refugee camp for out-of-work "Felicity" actors. Garner herself was in the show. Greg Grunberg plays a CIA agent. Felicity's counselor shows up in a few episodes. During the second season, Felicity's roommate shows up as a love interest for Marshall Flinkman (Kevin Weisman), the very annoying Q-like guy who constantly goes off on tangents in response to direct questions and somehow never gets shot in the face by annoyed superagents. Another link that irritated me was the fact that Patricia Wettig, from "Thirtysomething", plays a CIA shrink and her husband, Ken Olin, produces the show. Oh, and Ken Olin and Lena Olin, who plays Sydney's mother, have the same last name.
This season's 22 episodes begin from the point where Vaughn (Michael Vartan), presumed dead after being caught underwater in some facility, is found and he and Sydney continue to undermine Arvin Sloane (Ron Rifkin) and SD-6 (the evil CIA-like organization Sydney works for) and end with her trying to prevent her mother, Irina Derevko, Sloane, and Sark (David Anders), from reassembling an artifact from a DaVinci-like scholar named Rimbaldi that could somehow create world-wide havoc, though what exactly it does is left rather vague.
Here are just a few of the issues I have with this show:
- It reminded me of Star Trek. See almost every time Sydney and Vaughn or Sydney and whomever go on some mission that includes other CIA operatives, anybody who is not a star with name recognition is killed, while Sydney returns safely. It shouldn't take anybody more than a couple of missions to start thinking that Sydney is working for the other side.
- In one episode, Sydney and Dixon (Carl Lumbly), go to the artic to recover one of the artifacts. Dixon tells Sydney not to fall in the water because the ice will freeze over in four seconds. Naturally, she falls in the water and the ice freezes over and she can't get to the surface to breathe. My thought: This is something that could only be thought up in Southern California.
- Exactly how long does it take the CIA to stop two of their agents from going on missions once it realizes that they're sleeping together? It would be one thing if Vaughn and Sydney were keeping their affair secret, but they're not. I mean, there's a tape of them screwing circulating in the agency. It never seems to occur to anyone that their being on missions together might cause problems.
- After Irina Derevko turns herself in, there seems to be little concern about her being Sydney's mother when it comes to Sydney interrogating her. Of course, since Jack is her father and he's also involved with the interrogations, this all seems to be overlooked, as he's high up in the CIA and eventually starts supervising his own daughter. To put things over the top, the three of them actually go on a mission together, as if that wouldn't be fraught with retarded conflict, given that not only are they related, but -- get this -- Irina is among the most wanted terrorists on Earth, left Jack, and is Sydney's mom.
- Will Tippin is quite obviously in the same role as Scott Foley on "Felicity". As far as characterization goes, J.J. Abrams does just about everything he can to Will short of having a red hot poker jammed up his ass. I can't quite figure it out because when you see the extras, you discover that Abrams is this short, goofy-looking guy. He can't possibly have that much animosity for the "nice" guy, yet he seems determined to make sure that guy gets FUBAR-ed but good in each of his shows.
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