Introducing the Event Convolution Alert: Sorting Out Primetime's WTF-iest Show

Say what you have to about Lost's six-year campaign to leave people disappointed and embittered, but least by the end of the pilot we knew it was about a plane crash...on an island...with monsters. The Event, on the other hand, is perhaps (definitely) prematurely baffling and nebulous: After last night's "To Keep Us Safe," you're looking at imprisoned "non-terrestrial" races, sleeper agents, worm holes, kidnappings, layers and layers of conspiracy, mass graves -- not to mention all those arbitrary leaps in time. It's enough to get a diligent TV watcher's dander up.

And, so, as a cathartic exercise -- for me and for you -- let's rank The Event's, er, events in order of convolution.

1. Sean Walker (Jason Ritter) has been framed! This week finds him in an Arizona hospital, where he woke up after passing out in the desert, where the plane driven by his abducted girlfriend's father crashed -- after going through some sort of electromagnetically charged...hole. After a real bitch of a nurse gives him up, he is arrested for the murder of (bear with me a second) a fellow cruise ship patron who, as we learned in a splendid retcon, was actually killed by the people who abducted his girlfriend, Leila.

Convolution Alert Level: HIGH. Lingering concern: How did Jason Ritter get on that plane, anyway? And how did he learn about Leila's dad's involvement? Because from the way he was talking after the plane crash, he seemed to not know too much about who had taken Leila, which if you ask me is a bit incongruous with last week's dash to save the president.

2. Vicky, the cruise ship patron who Sean rescued/went snorkeling with last week, somehow orchestrated Leila's kidnapping and threatened Michael Buchanan until he tried to drive that plane into the president. Not a partner in this was Vicky's boyfriend, who is now dead (see above).

Convolution Alert Level: SEVERE. Oh, the couple couldn't have been working together -- that would have made sense. The decoy boyfriend was crucial.

3. Sophie (Laura Innes) is an alien who, along with 100 or so others, crash landed in Alaska in 1944. They've all been holed up in a prison -- though somehow some have escaped -- since then. If it looked last week like she was perhaps the president's alien czar, it's because she was, until the plane that was aimed at him disappeared in an electromagnetic worm hole.

Convolution Alert Level: ELEVATED. The arbitrary time leaps really mucked this up this week. It was 14 months ago that the president learned about the aliens. I assume that around that time, Sophie became the alien ambassador in the U.S.

4. The plane was "taken" by the aliens, who had to either let the military destroy it or have the plane land safely elsewhere, we learn as Lee, an alien sleeper who's ironically been tasked with tracking down infiltrators, chats with Thomas, another of the non-terrestrials.

Convolution Alert Level: GUARDED. It's too ambiguous to raise flags. Yet.

Got any more concerns or retcons or trifles to add to our burgeoning list?


  • Trace says:

    I don't know, but this show is terrible. Time leaps are completely arbitrary and there is literally no focus to this show.

  • Dimo says:

    Thanks for the summary...tells me that I was right in not watching a second episode. The only thing on Mondays now that is even mildly entertaining is "The Scott Caan Show". And that's only in a background noise kind of way.

  • Sarah says:

    I'm glad I wasn't the only one who was asking, "Wait-didn't it seem like last week Sean Walker knew about everything that was going on and this week he knows nothing?" Dammit, Event, I'm trying to like you, but you're not making it easy. Why am I trying? If I'm being honest, I think it's probably because there's some deep-seated loyalty to John Ritter involved, and I want to see his son do well.

  • Cornelious says:

    in my opinion he didnt hijack the plane to save the president, but to stop Michael (his gf's dad). He wouldn't have to know what was going on or why to know it's a bad idea for the father of a kidnapped girl to be doing anything out of the ordinary. Especially if it's plane related. But thats just my take on it. We don't seem to be very pro anything on this blog.

  • sweetbiscuit says:

    I agree, Cornelious, I think Sean (Ritter) was trying to stop Leila's dad from crashing the plane, not necessarily knowing about the President. And I'm with you, Sarah, I'm trying to like this damn thing. But Sean can't be framed for the murder if his name wasn't found as a passenger on the ship (and these days you can't board a cruise ship without an ID swipe checked against passenger lists).
    I'm still stuck on last week's ep: I don't get why everyone was rushing the Pres into the limo, which apparently was even MORE in the line of fire of the oncoming plane than the podium, then everyone just hunkered down, wincing, instead of driving him outta there. Either have him just barely make it to the car when the special fx happen, or have him see it happen out the rear view window. Do directors (editors?) not realize that these stupid-long moments just cheese it all up? Sigh.
    One thing I found distracting: the flight attendant with the short dark shag haircut looked an awful lot like the flight attendant on Lost (who as I recall ended up an Other).
    Okay, off to get a life.

  • On the subject of not being able to be framed without the name on the manifest: I'm assuming, given the responsible party's control over the manifest and the whole dead-body disposal situation, they wouldn't have much trouble tweaking that to their satisfaction post facto. And there's another thing - there are apparently no rules for whoever's pulling these strings. And, continuity-wise, that concerns me.

  • Trace says:

    No Hawaii 5-0?

  • sweetbiscuit says:

    True enough on all counts. And along the "no rules" concern: if the "non-terrestrials" have the power to zap the plane to protect Sophia, surely they have had the power to accomplish whatever it is they've wanted long before now, no?

  • Sadman says:

    It seems like the writers are doing things more complicated than they need to be for the sake of fanciness.
    There is the boyfriend of the conspirator not being a conspirator himself but, why wait until the cruise to kidnap the girl? It's obvious that they knew she was going because they had a plan but kidnapping all the sisters at once at home seems better budget-wise.