Being that I pretty much give damn near anything ABC Family puts out a chance, well their dramas anyway, naturally I had to look into Stitchers. Plus, with the show having a compelling preview in front of many of the films I see at AMC, I especially felt pushed to check this out. With that said, let’s talk about the premiere episode.
Review (with Spoilers) – Below
Characters & Story
Kirsten (Emma Ishta) can best be described as someone who seemingly is void of general human emotions and doesn’t seem to understand them as well. Something which, naturally, rubs a lot of people the wrong way. Though with her being highly intelligent, to the point of seeming like a high-functioning autistic person, we find her within a doctorate program and exhibiting the type of scientific knowledge which shows that her lack of social etiquette is highly made up for by her grasp on technology.
Kirsten’s personality and education aside, the main focus of episode one comes in her father figure Ed Clark (Hugo Armstrong) dying, and her being dragged into what her biological father was working on, with Ed, known as the Stitchers program, something which is under the NSA. In this program, Kirsten is tasked with merging her conscious with a brain which is within a dying host. Something done in this episode in order to stop multiple bombs from going off.
Naturally, though, Kirsten isn’t alone in the pursuit of protecting people. The project lead is Cameron (Kyle Harris), who is as much of a smart aleck as Kirsten, but knows his place; the NSA/ Stitchers liaison is Maggie (Salli Richardson-Whitfield), who does her best to put up with Kirsten’s attitude; and there are quite a few others who currently aren’t the most defined, but likely that is due to the main point being us getting to know Kirsten and seeing her stitch.
The first thing worth noting is that, at least offhand, I can’t quickly compare this to anything. For while, like iZombie, it seems a good portion of the show will deal with getting visions from people’s brains to solve or prevent crimes, there is something here that intrigues me. Of which I don’t know if it is Ishta’s take on Kirsten and the idea of seeing this emotionally dead person blossom and learn what feelings are; the mystery of why her father Dr. Danielson left her as a child; or perhaps the mixture of those two, the cases that will come, and seeing Kirsten’s everyday drama. Either way, there is certainly something here which should attract viewers.
Digging a bit deeper, though, perhaps the main thing I like is the idea that Kirsten isn’t a complete person and with their being almost parts of her missing, like the feel emotions and keep track of time, it makes the idea of watching her grow quite intriguing. Especially since it seems between Cameron, and her former roommate Camille (Allison Scagliotti), there can be a lot of growth in terms of not only whatever romantic may happen with Cameron, but also how she interacts normally with people which like can be seen through Camille.
Though what I’m also hoping for is that through the Stitchers program we will watch her gain a sense of family. After all, from what is presented, especially in terms of her relationship with her fathers, she seemingly doesn’t have any real life connections. And while, of course, seeing her go through people’s memories and all that is cool, I’m the type of person who likes seeing the lead evolve, and hopefully their co-stars evolve with them. Something which I think this show could give us as people go from geeky smart asses to human beings who pursued science either for deep purposes, stability, or because they simply wanted to be on the forefront.
The main issue I can foresee with this series is how ABC Family handles it long term. For, while I stan for ABC Family’s diversity in terms of sexuality, cultures, and race, at the same time it seems they will keep a show on past its expiration date and drag out a mystery until they are forced to give up an answer. Which, as seen in Twisted, leads to them seemingly causing a series to go into a tailspin for once the original mystery is solved, it seems they’d rather attempt to up the ante than let the series go in glory.
With a few criticizing I judge series a bit too early, and me recognizing that in the case of a few shows this was true, I’m holding onto my overall judgment until at least episode 4. For right now it still feels like we need a proper introduction to many members of the Stitcher’s team, and with that said here is to episode 2 fleshing things out a bit more.
Thoughts Since the Premiere
Honestly, this is one of those shows I like enough to watch, but I’m not checking my Facebook newsfeed or bouncing from Xfinity to Freeform, maybe even searching YouTube when an episode comes out and it isn’t online yet. Season 2, for example, I just watched a marathon of since not only were there better things on during the time of the original premiere, there is just no really desire to treat this as something that needs to be urgently seen. Like most FreeForm shows, outside The Fosters and Switched at Birth, not much is being said here. We aren’t being exposed to new things or storylines often done for just one episode. It’s a different type of sci-fi with the same old characters we’ve seen before. Just the nerds are now attractive.