Sunday, July 24, 2016

From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series, Season 2

   Season 2 of this show was set to explore virgin territory, seeing as how the first season was a really extended remake of the movie. The first season ended with a new take on things, but it felt familiar in it's own right to people who'd seen the movie. It perfectly set up a new season that would explore an entirely new direction for the property. See, Richie Gecko died in the movie, but with such a perfect duo starring in a TV show, it'd have been retarded to kill him off so early. So, in the show, he became nothing if not essential to the ongoing story, as did Santanico Pandemonium. These two characters, married to the expanded lore of the show, promised a riveting second season. And, boy did it deliver.

   First of all, can I gush again about the cast of this season? Whatever cameos and famous faces the first season neglected to have, they're here. Jeff fucking Fahey? Yep. Danny fucking Trejo? Yep. In fact, can I just say, it was a massive delight to see him in here. I felt that the first season needed Danny Trejo to show up, and when he didn't I was a bit sad, but he's here now! And he has an awesome character to boot. There's one more cameo I won't spoil, but he shows up towards the end of the season, and it put a big damn smile on my face. The show sets up a bunch of new characters, or new directions for familiar characters, and I was largely pleased with all of it.

   The new 'big bad', Malvado, is pretty terrifying with his penchant for literally ripping peoples' faces off, and then patching them onto his coat. Which brings me to my first complaint actually. After the season sets up everything, it sorta... peters out a bit. Malvado is never again as scary as he was in his debut episode. In fact, his face-coat is never seen again. Bigger picture, Kate and Seth have a little Butch and Sundance dynamic going on, but that's quickly over, and the show introduces a love interest for Seth in her place. I wasn't fond of that, I felt that there was so much more mileage to the Kate/Seth duo, and instead of it being a cornerstone of the season, it was half-asses and tossed aside tout de suite.

   If anything, that's the big continuous problem of this season. It keeps introducing so many cool ideas, only to toss them aside fairly fast. One minute, Richie and Santanico are passionate lovers, a great duo, and the next... they're fist fighting each other in a bitch fit. A bit of consistency would've been nice, because everyone in the show just seemed massively bi-polar all of a sudden. But, having said that, the show is consistently engaging and a lot of fun to watch. It started to realize towards the end that keeping Seth and Richie apart isn't so great, and that watching them work together is pretty much magic. It was kind of annoying, watching them bicker so damn much when they are onscreen together, but that's par for course with these two.

   The special effects and the action scenes are much better in this season, things are bloodier, and there's a lot of crazy visuals overall. That's one area that show is consistent in. There's never a shortage of wild visuals and over the top violence. There's a lot of really cool sci-fi/horror stuff on display here, and it's all married to neat concepts- like each Culebra having their own special power they have to discover. One Culebra early on in the season is able to actually spit venom, which was pretty awesome.

   The storylines and sub plots are fun for the most part, and the supporting cast of characters is still great. The whole concept of the show still feels fresh compared to anything else on television or Netflix, and I think D.J. Cotrona and Zane Holtz really made Seth and Richie their own in this season. For every shortcoming this season had, it also had something awesome to outshine it. It's a show that's easy to watch, and easy to get caught up in. Most of the issues I had with the season gradually dissipated towards the end, which led up to a pretty great climax over the last couple episodes. I think it's safe to say that the show has a long life ahead of it, and with the teasers they laid out for season 3, I can't wait to see what they have in store next.

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