I still don’t like cliffhanger endings

Featuring
Matt Dillon as Ethan Burke
Shannyn Sossamon as Theresa Burke
Charlie Tahan as Ben Burke
Carla Gugino as Kate Hewson
Toby Jones as David Pilcher
Melissa Leo as Pamela Pilcher

M. Night Shyamalan is rightly known as a wrecking ball (well, now he is) no matter what he touches. This television adaptation of Blake Crouch’s trilogy is rightly something that worried me, given Shyamalan’s track record. However, I was pleasantly surprised for the most part.

Wayward Pines begins in much the same manner as the books, Ethan wakes up confused and lost in a beautiful, yet sleepy town enclosed by mountains. Ethan, of course, is searching for missing secret service agents Kate Hewson and Bill Evans.

He finds the town strange, secretive and closed to him. The sheriff, Arnold Pope is especially hostile and run ins are frequent and hostile. He eventually finds out about the terrible secrets the town hides just below the surface.

I will leave the dissection of the storyline to you. Suffice to say that it largely follows the books, with some alterations along the way. I did enjoy the way the town was realised, though, from the mountains, to the characters and how mind numbing living in Wayward Pines is. One thing that is also done well, is the the exposition of the Wayward Pines Academy, and how some of the students are brainwashed into Pilcher’s ethos.

Of course, anyone who has read the books will know that it ends on a cliffhanger, and the series does not disappoint on that count either. Though the cliffhanger end ends in the same spirit, the way it arrives there is mostly nonsensical.

Most of the series deals with the contrasting themes of safety, security or freedom to determine one’s own fate.

Still, Shyamalan did a good job translating Blake Crouch’s books into a miniseries that was engrossing at the start and entertaining throughout. That there was deviation from the source material was expected, and even that was handled logically. Wayward Pines is a very enjoyable television distraction.

Rating

Surprisingly good work from Shyamalan, who did not wreck the translation from paper to screen.

Watch this if you…

Enjoyed the books and want to see the events come to life. Mostly.

Don’t watch this if you…

Have an issue with cliffhangers.

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