By Trevor Dueck – Staff Writer
Follow on Twitter @TrevDueck
Normally I do a full recap and review of the television show Under the Dome, but after watching four episodes I have decided that it has become a very painful show, to not only watch, but to write about as well.
Stephen King is a genius of a writer and I highly encourage any of you that have been as disenchanted with the show as I have, to read the book. In fact I am going to do just that. I’m actually interested in the story but CBS is killing my interest with each and every episode. I want to know what happens but I’d rather have the king of horror tell me than executive producer Brian K. Vaughan and the different weekly directors that he has employed to be behind the camera for each episode.
Maybe the fact that each episode has a different director is the main underlining problem. I guess it is not unheard of but with only thirteen episodes why couldn’t there be one director at the helm so that there was some continuity regarding vision? I also think some of the casting has been awful. This is no disrespect to the actors and maybe some of the blame falls on the writers. I think the dialogue has been weak and to be honest it’s missing any sort of edgy darkness that has been synonymous with King’s work of fiction. I think characters like Junior have been miscast and to be truthful he is a central part of the story and I can’t take that character seriously.
Maybe I am a TV snob because I have little to no time for major network television dramas. I like my television to be raw and edgy. I like characters played by actors who make you believe in them and bring you into their world. This is why James Gandolfini will be regarded as one of the greatest television actors of all time. We got sucked into the underworld of Tony Soprano and were saddened when the show finally came to an end and turned to black.
There is a reason why Game of Thrones, Sons of Anarchy, Breaking Bad, Mad Men and even Homeland do well. Those shows have certain honesty to them. They tell great stories with characters that either make you care for them or make you hate them; Under the Dome just doesn’t do that for me as the characters seem too one dimensional and familiar. I could care less about the bad guys and I am not invested enough to really care about the good guys. That’s a sign of poor writing and execution. It’s not just about cool CGI and the overall mystery that should matter; the audience has to care one way or the other about the characters and storyline.
Maybe I’m looking into this too deeply but this sort of storytelling reminds me of Lost, and funny enough, executive producer Brian K. Vaughan was behind that show as well. I was never a big fan of Lost and we have seen this whole Lord of the Flies social microcosm storyline before. Just watch that show Revolution and it’s the same thing.
I assume Under the Dome is probably going to do well in the ratings. There are people who are going to look past the bad acting, writing and directing and get sucked into the story because they want to know what happens. My mother-in-law is the Queen of watching bad television and there are many out there like her. For every great network drama that is made, which is few and far between, we have shows like Rookie Blue and Grey’s Anatomy that remind me why I love channels like HBO and Showtime so much. There is a reason why Showtime didn’t want to touch this series and turned it down.
I hope for everyone’s sake that the thirteen episodes of Under the Dome tell the whole story and that CBS doesn’t make the mistake of picking up the show for another season. This show doesn’t need to be dragged on any longer and if it does, the filler will be even more excruciatingly painful. It is Summer time get yourself out of your own dome and disregard the one on TV.