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Author Topic: Well, crap. (Kyle XY)
Raymond Arnold
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So a while ago I watched the first three episodes of Kyle XY, which were generally badly acted, scripted and all around executed. And then I heard it was cancelled, and I said "Meh." And then someone convinced me to watch the rest of it and now I'm sad. At least there's an interview explaining how it was intended to end. (http://community.abcfamily.go.com/blogs/kyle-xy/writerco-producer-julie-plec-answers-questions-about-kyle-xy-finale)

It still wasn't the greatest of shows - the high school drama stuff got awkward and annoying from time to time, and there really wasn't anything there that wasn't covered in other shows (I'd describe it as a weird combination of Smallville, Roswel, Batman Beyond, Terminator and Firefly). But it addressed some issues ways that most of those shows (at least Smallville and Roswel which were the most direct comparisons) didn't bother. I was glad to read in the interview that Kyle's eventual "destiny" was to go around helping people, not by putting on tights and fighting ridiculous supercriminals but by fixing world hunger and global instability and the kinds of things this world actually NEEDS.

Various things that I want to rant about in linear fashion (Spoilers)

• Love Andi and Josh. I think they may be my favorite TV couple ever. In part because they didn't have to go through a ridiculously drawn out "will-they-won't-they" thing. In fact, I think that's something I liked about the show as a whole - even when it was at its most Soap Operatic with people splitting and almost making up over and over, it always felt realistic, not drawn out for the sake of milking the chemistry.

• Love the way it deals with nature/nurture and free will. I think they realistically dealt with what choices we have control over and which we don't. Jessi and Kyle are nice mirror images of each other.

• I liked the interesting blend of heroes that Kyle is. Superpowered and supergood like Clark Kent. Has to actual put in hard physical work to develop himself like Batman. Unsure of human behavior like Cameron from Terminator. The result of a twisted experiment like River Tam. And has powers that are at least supposed to be within the realm of human capability like the guys from Roswel.

• Speaking as a liberal atheist I in general liked the moral and scientific outlook of the show. I liked the "Religion" episode in that it addressed both sides, showing the good and bad sides of religion and areligiosity, without feeling too heavy-handed in its evenness. A lot of shows have the "token religion episode" that struggles to find that balance and end up leaning to one side or end up saying nothing worthwhile. I liked that Kyle took valuable lessons from his experience with the Church, but that those lessons weren't inherently religious.

Things that mildly bugged me -

• Okay, minor minor liberal quibble - despite the awesome presentation of moral dilemmas, gender diversity/power dynamics and whatnot, the show has exactly one non-white guy. Who is a bad guy. (Also not sure what I thought about the "Gay People" episode, which was a) too heavy handed in its message and b) didn't actually feature a single actual gay person with speaking lines).

• From time to time the powers got a little too blatantly unscientific. I think the worst offender was the holographic memory - you can't remember what you didn't see. This is even worse than Bean's ability to remember obscure details that he wasn't focusing on at the time. I'm willing to suspend disbelief on manipulating electricity and stuff because that's at least something I personally don't know for sure our body has the capability to do or not.

• Speaking of which, was there any reason whatsoever for water to be easier to manipulate than anything else?

• The pointilist artwork. Seriously, that takes friggin forever. There is no way Kyle could create an entire pointilist mural in an hour or two before Prom.

• Not quite sure what I think about the portrayal of teen sex. I think it was fairly realistic, demonstrating cases where it was a bad idea and cases where it ended up not being a problem. It kinda bugged me that Josh and Andromeda got away with it but I can't think of another way to resolve it without being a blatant and unrealistic PSA.

Overall a good show. Hopefully the writers go on to do something else that's good. And I'm really glad they actually told us the ending they planned, it gave me a sense of closer that is painfully lacking in Terminator.

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Member # 8561

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There are shows that can't be judged by their phase-in period. Dollhouse, True Blood, etc.
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Raymond Arnold
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Yupper. Unfortunately those shows often are highly serialized which makes it hard to get the new people you need in order to save them from cancellation. The past year has taught me how important it is to totally nail the pilot episode unless you're planning on doing a procedural people can drop in at any time with.
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Blayne Bradley

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For example Avatar only really got good for me past episode 3 or 4. The voice acting felt wooden at first.
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