I found the first episode of Sense8 overwhelming. And long. Brain-bludgeoning. Disconcerting. Mildly bewildering. In the end, I’m left with the feeling that I might like to watch more of it, but I’m really not 100% certain.
To draw a comparison, when I watched Heroes for the first time, I had no doubts that I intended to watch it. Indeed, I found myself demanding the materialisation of Episode 2 immediately. As it happens, the BBC served up what I wanted… However, if they hadn’t I would have sat through a frustrated week. A tiring and exasperating week.
Here, not so much.
I can see that Sense8 might well need all these characters. Why all in the first episode? Couldn’t they appear scattered around at the beginning — and then the focus fall on just one or two. Somehow, the episode found like a checklist of diversity – counting off the various demographic categories required to meet some executive demand.
I want to trust Andy and Lana Wachowski and J. Michael Straczynski. I loved Babylon 5 and the original Matrix. However, I’m not willing to take them on face value and past achievements alone. You have to work harder than that. Both creative sources have had other successes, but they have also had suckfests. Not quite on a M. Night Shyamalan scale, but not far off in some cases.
I sat through the show and I will give it another episode before I decided to scarper or not. I had heard it was worth the investment – but, I don’t have an infinite pool of spare time. I already need to watch The X-Files before the return next year, and I haven’t finished watching Archer yet…
Right now I don’t think I could tell you many of the details about the episode. Not the finer details. It feels like a lot of things happened, but too much for my poor old brain to process. I certainly can’t manage to recall a single character name. Not one.
Do I stick with it?