TV Review: Falling Skies

Being that this show has just starting airing its second season this week, I felt it appropriate to write my thoughts on the show.

Falling Skies is a TNT series following a band of survivors fighting against an alien invasion of hexapedal aliens, known as “skitters”, and their superior technology.  The main character is a college history professor turned soldier named Tom Mason (played by Noah Wyle), who lives with a group of civilians (including his 2 sons) and militia members and  obsesses over finding his 3rd son, who was taken by the aliens.

First off, one of my favorite things about this show is that it starts off well after the invasion occurred.  So you start with the aftermath and get to piece together what actually happened during the initial invasion over time.  It makes the show less rushed and allows it to paint it’s own background in a more elegant manner.

Secondly, it shows a perspective that is rarely given in world-important TV shows and movies like this.  Usually in the story of an alien invasion, you’re following the President of the US or some super-genius satellite technician and a cocky combat pilot as they perform super-heroic feats that ultimately save the world.  Not so in this show.  You follow a family and the group they travel with as they eek out a meager existence while desperately avoiding detection (and eventually death or enslavement) by the aliens.  We get to see spans of time where everyday is a struggle by itself and the demoralizing desperation that accompanies not having enough food or medicine or a warm place to sleep at night.  All of this bleakness is offset by the occasional small victory (like defeating one, solitary alien), but you understand why, to them, it feels like they just won the war.  I found myself cheering and fist pumping at these little victories on several occasions.

There was only one thing that really bothered me in the first season and they alleviated my concerns within 2 or 3 episodes so well that I was excited about the characters discovering the same discrepancy.  It actually made me more invested in the show, to find out the answer to my question.

Overall, this is a very good show and worth your time.

Bear Grylls Leaves Discovery and ‘Man vs Wild’

via Reddit

In the realm of Survival TV, Bear Grylls reigns supreme with a full 6 seasons of his wildly popular show ‘Man vs Wild.’  That is, until this week.  Due to an ongoing “contractual dispute,” Discovery is cancelling all current production efforts for the show.  Not much is known at present as to what these disputes actually are. 

Regardless, “Man vs Wild” was one of those show I just loved to watch.  If you pay attention, you can learn a TON of survival techniques from it and it was also entertaining to watch.  I know that Bear didn’t always portray the show honestly (like staying in a hotel some nights), but it still made for good television.  I’ll miss “Man vs Wild,” but I look forward to seeing what new projects Bear Grylls works on in the future.

P.S. – Discovery, if you’re through with Bear Grylls, BRING BACK LES STROUD AND SURVIVORMAN!

Found on the Internet: Zombies, Run! An iOS game.

Most of what I write about here is skills, knowledge, and devices you will need for once Armageddon has occurred, but what about prior to that.  You need to do some prep work to be ready and preparing your body is probably the most important aspect.  The developer Six to Start brings you an iOS game that makes running/jogging/walking fun and puts you in that Zombie Apocalypse state of mind.  Basically, you are a survivor in a world overrun with zombies.  You have to avoid the zombies while collecting vital supplies to support your base.  After you’ve gone out collecting (aka running), you return to base with your supplies and distribute them among the survivors at base in order to help your base prosper.  The more thrivant your base, the more missions you have access to.

One of the things I really like about this game is that it allows you to play your own music while you’re out doing these things.  Also, according to their website, they plan on integrating their data with Runkeeper which is handy for all you Runkeeper users out there.

The app costs $8 from the iTunes store, which is a bit pricey for an iOS app, but what’s $8 when Armageddon strikes?

Zombies, Run! [via Lifehacker]

TV Review: Stuck With Hackett

Stuck with Hackett is a show on the Science Channel that follows Chris Hackett around as he builds contraptions out of found materials. Hackett is one of the founders of the Madagascar Society so he is an ideal candidate to host a show like this. Have you guys seen this yet? It’s a brilliant show that shows exactly what you need to know if you’re trying to cope in the PAW. He builds a wood gasifier engine to power a hand cart down a railroad out of what he calls “obtanium”, or as the rest of us call it “found resources”, basically whatever you can find around you.

The show is in it’s first season and can be seen on the Science Channel on Fridays at 10:30pm EST.