Sunday, May 26, 2013

Day One Hundred and Forty-six - Tron:Uprising, Isolated, "I... may have been hasty."

A few days ago, I was just so happy to finally get a chance to check out the animated tie-in of the Tron universe that I probably forgave more than I should have when it came to plotholes, flat characters, and just general overall cheese.

Now that I'm a couple of episodes in, the bloom is definitely off the rose.

It's not that I don't still enjoy it, somewhat, it's just that there are only so many times I can take awkward scenes, characters acting against type, and the tendency towards episodic resets.

I mean, for a city of thousands, if not tens or hundreds of thousands, of programs... The Occupation sure finds plenty of time to interact specifically with Beck and the rest of the garage's mechanics on a regular basis, yet completely forget them once the half-hour is over. I've seen Beck's two compatriots arrested and held several times now by the bad guys and not once do any of the red/orange-shirts stop and say, "Hey, didn't I round you up last week and you escaped? That's suspicious!"

That and the blatant incompetence that the big bad forgives of his direct subordinates, yet punishes with deadly force the slightest infraction by the no-face Redshirts of his army. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad Paul Reubens is getting work, but the crap his character Pavel and Emmanuelle's Paige (who should've been named Page... no 'i') get away with, they should've been derezzed long ago.

I mean, consider this episode, Isolated. Paige and Pavel chase the disguised Beck to an island of code out in the middle of the Sea of Simulation. What should be a prime case of actual character development is just more Pavel backstabbing (with no consequences, other than venomous looks) and Paige's mopey hostility.

Sure, the one highlight is the cameo by Olivia Wilde, reprising her role of Quorra from Legacy, but the interactions we see here via Paige's flashbacks are all awkward and ultimately pointless. The whole Iso angle should have deepened both the overall universe and Paige's own personal quest, but thanks to terrible writing and direction, it's useless... a failure.

And that's the whole problem with the series. I really have no trouble understanding why it was cancelled, now. I want to like it. Hell, I want to love it. But for every small moment of potential that peeks through the veil, there are dozens of pathetic, cliche ones that come straight out of Horrible Trope Television 101.

At this point, I can only recommend Tron:Uprising for folks who are desperately in love with Legacy as it retains the fighting and graphic styles. For fans of great television and storytelling? Stay far, far away.

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