THE EVENT “Arrival” Review

The Event

THE EVENT “Arrival” Season 1 Episode 22 – The season and probable series finale of The Event is a surprisingly satisfying hour of television. Sadly, this isn’t because the plot suddenly all makes sense, but rather because it’s so ridiculous that you have no choice but to be amused by it all. Alas, I’m about to give it some serious thought and I have no doubt that I’ll need a strong drink by the end of this review.

I’ll summarise it as briefly as possible:

Sean, Vicky, Sterling and Simon track down Sophia. Sean talks her down from releasing the virus in Dulles airport. The other two distribution centres were already locked down by tactical teams and are safe too.

Leila gets medical attention and will probably be fine. She’s also pregnant.

Martinez gets back his presidency but use of a, uh, cell phone recording of Jarvis admitting to poisoning him.

Although the virus/mass murder plan was thwarted, the transport of Sophia’s fellow aliens could not be stopped. So they arrived, but not on earth. Oh, no, their entire planet was transported and now sits alongside earth in it’s orbit.

We learn that Christina Martinez is an alien. When asked by her son what the planet is she says ‘home’.

Back when The Event started I hated it. I hated it with a bright and burning passion. It was badly written, badly directed, badly thought out. It was a series created not for the love of the story but as a ‘hit’, as a series the audience was supposed to accept as the new Lost. (This is all my own opinion, of course, but that’s definitely what it felt like.)

And then, after the hiatus, came the new and improved The Event. The storylines were becoming more coherent, the direction and style were much better, and the characters’ personalities started to even out into something worth getting invested in.

But why stick with a good thing when you can ruin it with the most implausible plotline possible? This virus thing is ridiculous. From digging the infected body out of ice in Russia, to infecting a human/alien hybrid to make the virus less aggressive, none of it made sense. Even in this episode, Sean is in the same room as Leila (who is still sick and therefore still carries the damned virus) and they seem to assume he can’t get sick.

Sidenote: I know I like the idea of Sean/Vicky and am therefore biased, but what was the point of making Leila pregnant? Was her quarter-alien baby going to save the world one day? Would she even have looked after the kid? Because let’s be honest here, her sister was left with an alien woman, the same aliens who pretty much abducted Leila and are now trying to kill mankind, and that hasn’t been acknowledged at all.

There’s really nothing to say about the Martinez-Jarvis situation. Why come up with elaborate plans and show proof of spiked coffee on shirt cuffs when you can just use a cell phone and record your enemy admitting to trying to kill you, all said in a crisp, clear voice in the middle of the White House? Why indeed.

And while we’re on Martinez, I liked the one word reveal of Christina being an alien – ‘home’. It also makes me wonder if she messed with his medication to make him collapse, buying them more time before the vote so that the transportation part of Sophia’s plan couldn’t be stopped.

I suppose that now we have to address the ‘arrival’ of the title, right? Jeez. Okay, gird your loins, dear reader. Rather than transport 2.5 billion people to earth – where would you even put them upon arrival, never mind finding them living space – Sophia et al transported an entire planet. Like, a whole planet. Just sat it right there next to earth.

Now I’m all for suspension of disbelief and I will happily ignore a bit of science-fluffing. But this? It is a planet being deposited into our solar system. Go aliens – your own planet is buggered so you bring it here to mess ours up too. That’s a great plan.

I wanted to like the finale because the second half of The Event wasn’t completely awful. For the last few weeks I’ve actually been excited to watch it, happy to ignore the stupid virus plotline to see what the characters do. There were some semi-decent storyline ideas here and there, but The Event didn’t have strong enough writing to pull them off. It’s a shame because there was some pretty good acting on this series, especially – in my opinion – from Zeljko Ivanek (Sterling) and Bill Smitrovich (Jarvis).

So now we’re left with one question: what is the event? According to Simon, the aliens left earth because of ‘the event’, something that would happen to them and would, incidentally, kill all humans. The event seems to be some sort of leap in alien evolution. I’m not sure how this would kill all the humans (I’ve decided I like the idea of them becoming ravenous vampires or something) but it does bring up an important question.

If the event will kill all humans then why the bloody hell did they just spend the last half a dozen episodes on that stupid virus plot? Why not just bring the aliens here, let the event happen and let the humans die? Even if the virus had only killed a quarter of the population ‘the event’ will have eventually killed the rest anyway!

Well, unless Sean and co stopped it, of course. I have no doubt that they would have. Maybe Sean would even have ditched the annoying girlfriend and shacked up with the killer chick making hearteyes at him for half a season.

You know what? I need that drink now.

What did you think of ‘Arrival’ and of The Event overall? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

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