10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
A truly remarkable series too far ahead of it's time,
This review is from: Millennium - Season 1-3 [DVD]  (DVD)
Yes, even though it's premise begins firmly rooted in late nineties end of the millennium doomsday paranoia, this series was actually quite ahead of it's time with it's ideas and concepts.
The story at a glance may appear to be about "psychic detective" Frank Black investigating a different serial killer every week, but that is simply a gross oversimplification of what Millennium is all about. For one, Frank Black isn't 'psychic' in any way, he actually possesses the ability to put himself into the mind of a killer(Not literally of course) to an extent that borders on the abnormal, and consequently has caused Frank serious mental problems in the past. Something which comes up to usually powerful effect throughout the series as Frank simply could not have been played by anyone else half as well as he is played by the vastly underrated Lance Henriksen, who brings the stoic character to life in a way that shames pretty much every central character you've ever seen portrayed in an American TV show. Couple this with truly astounding supporting performances from Terry O'Quinn(Of Lost fame), Megan Gallagher and a rare example of a child actress that can actually act in the form of Brittany Tiplady as Frank's daughter, who may or may not ACTUALLY be psychic in some fashion, as the series teases and explores across it's run. The acting quality in this series is of an absolutely phenomenal quality that towers over any show on TV today, it really is.
The show did get a lot of heat for it's wild change of focus after the first season onto the more fantastical, supernatural elements of it's back story, but this is merely building on groundwork laid during season one, which also implied something more than the mere psychological was at play in the creation of so many serial killers at once, but it can be a tad jarring to go from season one stories about mad bombers who get off on explosions to season two stories comedy episodes about demons(It works a lot better than you're probably picturing here, believe me) swapping stories about their most recent exploits in tormenting innocent people. Even with the persistently changing focus of the series though, it is never anything less than supremely entertaining.
There are so many great episodes of this series I couldn't, simply couldn't pick a single one as a favourite, but I kid you not when I say you'll see where many of today's Hollywood 'serial killer' movies stole their ideas from in Millennium, with the season two episode 'The Mikado' being nigh on identical to serial killer movie Untraceable, despite coming around a decade earlier.
Basically, this is an intelligent, engrossing, and hugely entertaining series that is easily the single best thing that Chris Carter ever made. It's sole flaw is that it ends far too soon and too abruptly, leaving you only with an awful episode of the X-Files as closure(Included as an extra on the season three set), but don't let that put you off.
Give it a try, and marvel at how TV shows should be done.
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Initial post: 8 Oct 2013 13:44:02 BDT
Man of the Third Eye says:
Spot on review! I completely agree with what you said about the series - way ahead of it's time and seriously underrated. Although I'm a major X-files fan, I preferred this series over that. Working on the series fair took it's toll on Lance. He has been quoted as saying it was physically and mentally draining. He's an awesome actor and, like you say, as are all the supporting actors. Apparently he and Bill Smitrovic did not get along on set - due to a fault of the latter (Bill appears to p!ss most people off on the shows he works on).
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