TV Review: Blindspot 1×01, “Pilot”

Blindspot

I’ve admittedly had some very confusing mornings after having had a wild night. You wake up, not quite sure exactly where you are. I’ve been lucky enough to not have woken up inside of a large duffel bag with not only no recollection of how I got there, but also no idea who I was. Mind you, I’ve probably gotten closer to it than I’d like to.

After the whole duffel bag incident, the government tries to identify the woman in the bag. Nothing comes up in any avenue, so she becomes known as Jane Doe (Jaimie Alexander). Lead FBI agent Kurt Weller (Sullivan Stapleton) has no idea who she is even though she has his name tattooed on her back. While investigating a terrorist attack, they find clues to stopping the perpetrator on Jane’s body. If you think Jane can’t be of any help because she can’t remember who she is, you’d be dead wrong. Waiting in her mind is a set of skills that only comes from rigorous, military training, and I’m sure we haven’t even begun to scratch the surface yet. Together with Weller and a task force, she is put to use in trying to stop a terrorist cell before they cause more damage.

We’ve seen Jaimie Alexander physically crush her enemies in the Thor films, but now we can see her do it outside of her Asgardian armor. Her new armor is a body covered in tattoos, and her weapon of choice is a skill-set of latent abilities she has yet to discover. We’ve seen these amnesiatic heroes before in all sorts of action films. The hybrid of The Bourne Identity and Momento is equal parts action and police procedural mixed with glimpses of intrigue. All you have to do is get past the preposterous set up to start enjoying the show. Unfortunately, many people won’t be able to make it past the first episode, but there is great potential that may be fully realized in later episodes.

There is an unfortunate sexualization of the main character that comes from using her body as a codex. I understand the appeal and appreciate the artistry of the stunning tattoo work, but I can see this effect getting old fast. Luckily, she goes beyond just being a prop or reference point and takes charge with impressive (for television) action sequences and a lively pace to keep up with it. Alexander’s performance adds a much needed layer of drama by showing the level of frustration and fear that comes from not being to remember a single thing about yourself. We’ve all felt the frustration of not being able to remember something, like where the keys are or that one movie with that one person in it. I felt and shared in her frustration. Add to that the budding chemistry between her and Stapleton and you have a completely complimentary cast.

Martin Gero has experience in creating and fleshing out mythologies having written for a few Stargate shows. If the shows are nothing else, they are at least compelling in their mythologies. Director of The Mothman Prophecies Mark Pellington does a fair job blending the action elements while also trying to develop a mythos within the show. That is the most fascinating aspect of the show, and the part that makes it stand above most of the other shows premiering this season. The only problem, much like in Mothman, is that the mythology could keep expanding without offering any explanations or answering any of the mounting questions.

The body is a road map detailing where you’ve been. For Blindspot‘s Jaimie Alexander, it also shows her where she’s going. Hopefully the story remains captivating enough for us to continue on the journey with her.

RATING: ★★★★★★ (6/10 stars)

Jon would say that as a writer, he is a self-proclaimed film snob and a pop culture junkie. Always gives his honest, critical, and maybe a little bit snarky opinion on everything. He's very detail oriented and loves anything involving creativity and innovation. You're better off asking him who his favorite director is rather than his favorite film. So beware and get ready to be entertained. You can contact him at jon@theyoungfolks.com or follow him on twitter @DystopianHero. (Also, he doesn't always refer to himself in the third person, but sometimes he just has to).