Mondays, 10 p.m. on NBC
Clearly these gloomy times have creative types thinking about the end of the world as we know it because we've seen a bunch of apocalyptical-type shows recently from "Terra Nova" to "Jericho" to "Walking Dead" and "Falling Skies."
Add "Revolution" to that pile. The ambitious drama opens with the loss of not just electricity, but all power -- there are not only no lights, no cellphones, no computers, planes fall out of the sky. In short, modern technology is useless. Fifteen years after the blackout, big cities are no more and America is a series of agrarian towns ruled over by a ruthless militia.
In this world, the focus is on the family of Ben (Tim Guinee) and Rachel (Elizabeth Mitchell) who seem to have known this would happen; indeed Ben has something IMPORTANT on a flash drive. The couple has two children: Charlie (Tracy Spiridakos), a strong-willed young woman who knows her way around a bow and arrow, and Danny (Graham Rogers), an asthmatic.
After a confrontation with Captain Tom Neville (Giancarlo Esposito, making a strong first impression), a henchman for the mysterious leader of the evil militia, Charlie and some friends set out to find her uncle Miles (Billy Burke) in Chicago, and then, of course, solve the mystery and save the world.
As I wrote, "Revolution" is ambitious, I mean, that's already a whole lot of plot. And while I can see, even admire that ambition, I wasn't mesmerized by the first episode. In part, I think it's because I'm not that awed by a world without technology. I'm a slow adapter to just about every device that's been developed in the last decade and I'm OK with that. Plus we (the world) lived in this 'powerless' state before. Can't we just do what we did the first time? You know, create?
I'm pretty sure the creators have thought of that and will explain why wind hasn't been harnessed to make electricity and maybe all of this is a meditation on technology and our connected times. Just guessing. Yet, despite the action scenes (lots of sword, knife and arrow fights with the accompanying squishy sound effects) and the twists and clues that promise that at the very least someone has thought this through carefully, I don't feel all that compelled to find out what's going on.
For me, "Revolution's" own power is dim.