Retired serial-profiler Frank Black has moved his family to
Seattle to escape the violence and horror he dealt with while
working for the FBI in Washington, D.C. Although his ability
to see into the minds of serial killers has caused him much
inner torment, Black knows his "gift" can still be used to
help protect and save others. For that reason he has joined
the mysterious Millennium Group, a team of underground ex-law
enforcement experts dedicated to fighting against the ever-growing
forces of evil and darkness in the world...
two of Millennium shifts focus dramatically from the
crime based episodes and starts to concentrate more on what
the Millennium Group is really all about. There are still
plenty of 'monsters of the week' episodes, but thankfully
Frank's abilities are not so overbearing as they were in season
season two doesn't get off to the best of starts. In The
Beginning and the End, Frank's wife is kidnapped and it
is up to Frank to track her down and save the day. This episode
starts well, but quickly descends into mediocre territory.
If only this episode had been drawn out a little better. As
the kidnaper reveals, he has committed no serious crime -
only kidnapping. So, how come Frank is allowed to get away
with his actions in this episode? It was a shame that events
set up so painstakingly last season (Frank receiving Polaroid
pictures of his family in the post) ended so weakly.
is another example of a great idea which never blossoms. A
nursery school teacher is accused of physically harming the
children in her care. The suspense is built to an exciting
crescendo... and then it ends too suddenly.
as it's a dark show, this series is at its best when it isn't
taking itself too seriously. Jose Chung's Doomsday Defense
is a fantastically funny episode that revolves around a cult
known as Selfosophy. Incidentally, this has a blink-and-you'll-miss-it
in-gag as David Duchovny (who starred in the most famous Chris
Carter series, The X-Files) is the face of Hollywood
superstar Bobby Wingood. While Duchovny never actually appears
in person in this episode, if you pay attention you'll see
him on a poster for a movie called Mr. Ne'er Do Well.
This episode is really poking fun at Scientology - we are
told that many Hollywood actors are involved therefore how
could it be immoral? The writer and director, Darin Morgan,
pokes fun at how moody Frank is when one of the Selfosophy
followers tells Black: "People are reluctant to open
up to dark, moody, brooders." To which Black looks surprised
and says: "They are?"
other writer/director episode this season is Somehow,
Satan Got Behind Me which sees four old men meeting for
a chat in a diner. However these are old men with a
secret - they are all demons. This is funnier than Jose
Chung's Doomsday Defense, and again features a nod to
the X-Files. This time a crime is committed on the
set of a TV show - a sci-fi show where the main characters
look spookily familiar. For me Jose
Chung's Doomsday Defense and Somehow,
Satan Got Behind Me are the best two episodes
of this season.
of the Century, is a Christmas episode - and one that
starts to look as though it might be gushingly sentimental.
While it does follow stereotypical Christmas themes about
getting along with your family, Frank's broken relationship
with his father is rather moving.
I mentioned previously, Fransk's abilities don't seem to be
so much of an issue in this season. Nowhere is this more obvious
than Goodbye, Charlie. Frank's powers don't seem to
be used as a crutch any more and this is more a cop show.
is also the episode that made me appreciate how the producers
also managed to use inappropriate music as a backdrop to horrific
events. In this episode the killer sings Karaoke songs to
his victims as they are about to die. But this is also used
effectively in Beware of the Dog - where a couple are
killed by vicious dogs to the The Carpenters's Close to
You and in the episode Owls, where a murder is committed
to A Horse With No Name by America. But by far
the scariest is A Room with No View in which a terrible
version of Love is Blue by Paul Mauriat is played constantly
to inmates of a house who are being held prisoner by a mentally
also plays a large part in The Mikado. Here Frank
and Peter investigate a murder committed live on the Internet.
Clues lead Frank to the past and a serial killer called Avatar.
It was a refreshing change to see opera play a large part
in an episode and while this idea has been done to death (Fear
Dot Com and My
Little Eye being probably
the best examples and I'm sure an episode of CSI trod
very similar ground) this is probably the first instance of
using the Internet as a crime scene - web cameras were only
just starting to appear when this episode was shot.
Pest House is also entertaining. In this episode asylum
inmates become prime suspects in a series of murders involving
urban legends. Look out for Brendan Fehr (Roswell's
Michael Guerin) who has a short role.
interesting thing about this season is that episodes often
leave you hanging in mid-air. As with The X-Files,
the villains don't always get caught, and we don't always
get closure - just like the real world.
most powerful epodes
was the two-parter Owls and Roosters. Although
while this cleverly sets up another power in opposition to
the Millennium Group, by it's conclusion everything is back
to normal. A real opportunity to have an ongoing power struggle
was wasted. If it was that easy to wipe the other side out,
why wasn't it done years previously?
all episodes work as well as they should have. In Anamnesis
Frank is obviously bored and has popped off on holiday, leaving
Catherine and Lara to investigate a girl who appears to be
having visions. Sadly, by the halfway point I was wishing
I was wherever Frank was. Another boring affair is Luminary
in which Frank, acting against the orders of the Millennium
Group, searches for a missing boy in Alaska.
wasn't just some of the episodes that lost their footing -
not all of the guest stars were really up to the challenge
either. While Terry O'Quinn is about the best thing in this
series, I didn't really take to Kristen Cloke, who plays Lata
Means. On occasion it felt as though she didn't really understand
the words she was speaking. There were at least two occasions,
when she had to deliver long speeches on technical and biblical
matters, where she just seemed to be regurgitating meaningless
extras on this collection are fairly average. There's a behind
the scenes documentary, some audio commentaries and another
feature with the Academy Group on their involvement with real
season is a lot more enjoyable than the first season - but
not without it's faults. On the whole though, I enjoyed it.
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