Here’s the second blog post I owe y’all today. I’m staying with the TV theme that I started in NBPM 17: Cord-Cutting.
It’s Fall which means two things: daylight savings time and the fall TV season. The new series that has captured my attention and my heart is Fox’s Minority Report. The show is based on the movie that I’ve never seen starring Tom Cruise. Minority Report, the TV series stars Meagan Good (a long-standing crush of mine since D.E.B.S.), Stark Sands, Li Jun Li, and Wilmer Valderrama. I’m not going to try and convert you (Okay, real talk? I am totally gonna try and convert you, try being the operative word). I’m just going to tell you why I like the show so much.
The premise of Minority Report involves three children – Agatha, Dash, and Arthur – whose brains are modified to the point that they can see future events, mostly murders and other crimes. Metro PD uses them to build their Pre-Crime Division. They basically take control of these children’s lives, placing them in a photon milk bath where they do nothing but predict crimes day in and day out. The three pre-cognitives or pre-cogs for short, solved at least a thousand crimes before the program got shut down.
Years later, they still have visions but do their best to stay under the radar, afraid the government will snatch them up at any time and take their freedom away again. Dash throws a wrench into this plan when he contacts Det. Lara Vega (played by Meagan Good) and they begin working together to fight crime. They pre-solve crimes and try to stop them before they can happen almost like in the Pre-Crime days.
Location, Location, Location
The show is set in 2065 Washington, DC. A lot has changed in the District of Columbia. The local NFL team has changed its name from a racial slur to the Red Clouds – a move that I heartily support. Seriously, I would root for the Red Clouds in a heartbeat, even though the name makes no sense when you think about it. Literally anything is better than having a racial slur for a team name. Ahem.
The cast is truly diverse as any show set in a metropolitan area like DC should be. This series shows viewers the power and beauty of a truly diverse cast. It’s so good to see a future that’s full of people of color! There have been too many books, shows, and movies where we never see ourselves.
Meagan Good plays Det. Lara Vega.
Vega is the nominal lead of the show, although the story revolves around the three pre-cogs as much as it does her. All the pre-cogs happen to be white. It would have been fun to play with that and cast people of different races as the pre-cogs, sort of like Lin Manuel Miranda has done with his Broadway hit, “Hamilton”. But the actors playing the pre-cogs are all doing fine jobs.
Meagan Good and Nick Zano as Det. Lara Vega and Arthur Watson.
Arthur (played by Nick Zano) has some crackling chemistry with Vega. It’s led me to tag gifs of them with #These Two Need to Bang.
But my favorite character besides Vega is Akeela (played by Li Jun Li). Akeela is the tech wiz at Metro PD who wears tattoos on her face to thwart the police’s facial recognition technology. I hope we get more background on her soon. Right now all we know is that she really likes and needs her job and that Vega is her BFF. Some folks even ‘ship Lara and Akeela because the chemistry between the two actors is so good. Hopefully she gets an episode focused on her the way Dash, Vega, and Lt. Blake have.
Depiction of the Future
On Minority Report, the future isn’t some melting pot utopia (otherwise there’d be no conflict and thus no show) but it’s not some bleak dystopia either which is nice. The latest episode to air, “American Dream” added another wrinkle of complexity to the universe of the show with the plight of the Fourteens. The 14’s are the children of undocumented residents that were amnestied by the President just prior to the repeal of the 14th amendment. Even though they were born here, they can’t claim U.S. citizenship and have to go off the grid to get work and support themselves and their families. Grim stuff for a futuristic procedural. Details like that show how well mapped out the show is. Or at least how well they writers have incorporated the source material.
R.I.P. Almost Human. Miss you.
I’m a sucker for futuristic sci-fi especially if there are POC in lead roles. It’s why I love authors like Octavia Butler and shows like my dear, departed Almost Human so much. That said there are reports that Fox has cut the season order of Minority Report episodes down from 13 to 10. That’s not encouraging. I can’t help but wonder why Fox tantalizes me with shows that hit so many of my sweet spots that they almost feel made just for me. They only rip my heart out later by meddling with storylines (Sleepy Hollow) or just straight up cancelling a show (Almost Human). But that’s Fux for ya!
Once the last episodes of Empire, Sleepy Hollow and Minority Report air, I’m girl-cotting Fux for good!
So what are your favorite new TV shows this season and why? Let me know in the comments.
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