Pilot

Episode Reviews (14)

Great
133 votes
8.4
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  • 9.8

    This first episode of Night Stalker

    By farscapefanuk, Mar 05, 2007

    This episode was on a whole very good, i enjoyed to suppense and the writing. Kolchak is a very interesting charactor i really liked the mark on his rist as this opens up possible stories for further along in the series. Perri Kolchak's parter is similar to that of agent Scully from the X Files, it is likely as the creator Frank Spotnitz wrote on the X Files so he may be trying to re-create the partership Mulder and Scully had during the X Files. Overall the episode was good, i am nw intreged to watch on. I hope that the stories will stary sharp and unpredictable. Ans the thing that really got me was what actually Kolchaks wife?moreless

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  • 10

    Erm, I believe the music IS Philip Glass, not Philip Glass-inspired. Derp. See his CV at PhilipGlass.com



    http://www.philipglass.com/?query=night+stalker&cmd=search

    By sisdisco, Jul 13, 2006

    Erm, I believe the music IS Philip Glass, not Philip Glass-inspired. Derp. See his CV at PhilipGlass.com



    http://www.philipglass.com/?query=night+stalker&cmd=search



    Next, this was a fantastic series. The female lead, though super annoying and overly full of herself, was even palatable over cancellation of the series altogether. Superbly stylized--how many series can you think of that have opening credits that change with every episode--and You Can\'t Beat Stuart Townsend. That was a ding-dang casting coup. I think if you just had him run for five minutes once a week, well, I\'d watch it. I can\'t understand how 3 million+ viewers is not enough to justify airing a show. That\'s at least a couple of small countries, isn\'t it?moreless

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  • 10

    BRING IT BACK!



    By onerunningman, Mar 24, 2006

    Bring back NIGHT STALKER what in the world was the network thinking????? With only a few winners left on TV (i.e. House MD; Prison Break; Invasion), we lose one of the best? Night Stalker in the 70\'s with Darren McGavin was absolutely OUTSTANDING!!! I really think all the fans of this show need to unite and get this show back on the air!!!

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  • 8.5

    It may not be the best genre pilot ever, but it does show promise and isn't as bad as the critics say.

    By archangelcory16, Nov 27, 2005

    Here's a pretty long account of how I've come to feel about "Night Stalker"...



    I happen to be a huge fan of genre. I will give any science-fiction or fantasy series a chance. So, naturually, when all the networks announced their lineups and I saw that there were six new genre shows premiering, I was thrilled. I was already watching "Lost" and "Medium". "Point Pleasant" and "Revelations" were canceled. I had plenty of room for everything.



    I was most excited for The WB's "Supernatural", which has many similarities with a show called "So Weird", which was one of the first "monster of the week" shows I really loved. I was also excited about ABC's "Night Stalker", which I knew was getting a lot of heat from the critics who were so offended that this show dare call itself a "reimagining" of the short-lived 70's series. This worried me for a little while, but the series still sounded really good, and the story arc that ABC talked about in the press releases grabbed my attention.



    Over the summer, I got the oppurtunity to see all six genre pilots. I thought all of them showed a lot of potential, but the weakest one, in my opinion, was "Surface". I was impressed with "Invasion" and thought that it seemed very different from the typical alien invasion series somehow. "Threshold" was great for the action and thrills, and provided a new spin on the usual sci-fi government conspiracy story - only we see the conspiracy from the INSIDE. I was pleasantly surprised with "Ghost Whisperer" and didn't think it was bad at all, and sure enough, I now like it better than "Medium". And then came "Supernatural". The pilot absolutely blew me away. I wasn't expecting all THAT much, I figured it would be more light-hearted and try to be quirky like the other shows on The WB, like "Buffy the Vampire Slayer", or the awful "Charmed". With the high budget and writing skills, and the great acting on "Supernatural", I was instantly in love and didn't think "Night Stalker" would impress me.



    I finally got my hands on the "Night Stalker" pilot and found it to be enjoyable, but nothing too special. It was good enough for me to watch the series. A few weeks later, I decided to watch the pilot again. The second time around was better and I enjoyed it more, although it still had its issues. Then I heard that there were going to be reshoots to make the pilot better, and I was intrigued.



    On the night of the premiere I watched the pilot. Again. And found it to be even better, and it DID benifet from the rewrites and new scenes.



    I won't lie. This show could've been better. It seemed like it was struggling to establish itself, yet it relied too much on "The X-Files", hoping to grab the audience of that show. Still, something about it makes me like it a lot anyway.



    I think the cast is great. Stuart Townsend is an underrated actor, and his "pretty boy" looks didn't really phase me at all, and I don't understand why so many people have a problem against him. He plays tortured soul very well. And he brought unique feel to the new Carl Kolchak that made him different from Fox Mulder, and I personally liked this Kolchak better than Mulder.



    Gabrielle Union was also enjoyable. She's a very attractive woman and cinched the role. However, the character itself seems quite underdeveloped and needs to DO more. But I found myself enjoying Perri Reed much more than Dana Scully. Perri can accept the supernatural when she has proof. She is much more realistic than the skeptics we saw on "The X-Files". In real life, most people will question otherworldy interference, but if you get chased by supernatural wolf beings, you'll start to accept it.



    I don't have much to say for McManus and Vincenzo, since they're roles were so small, although McManus is an enjoyable, albeit minor, character, and his light-heartedness was welcome and balanced out Kolchak and Reed.



    As for the story, the pilot was a bit confusing. It sets up the entire arc for the series. ABC wanted Frank Spotnitz to raise all questions in the pilot and only have those arcs throughout the series, so it wouldn't turn into the endless guessing game that was "The X-Files". We don't get an answer as to what the wolf-things are exactly, or how they pick their victims. We don't know why some victims have the snake-like marks on their wrist and others don't. We learn that Carl has the mark. He's hunting for supernatural deaths to understand the connection.



    Despite the confusion the pilot provides, it's well-written and creepy. The show's purpose is to disturb us and freak us out, and it probably did scare a lot of people. As for me, there were scenes that made me tense, but it wasn't terrifying. Unfortantely I've become somewhat immune to that after all of the horror movies and shows I've watched. Disturbing, the show achieves more. Women being brutally mutilated and having fetuses ripped out their body is fairly disturbing. And the visuals that we see when Carl is telling Perri about other supernatural cases he's encountered are freaky and violent as well.



    But disturbing and violent isn't necessarily bad. "Night Stalker" has guts and shows more than "The X-Files" did in its early years, and think had "Night Stalker" gone on it would've gotten even better and scaring us.



    I'd also like to comment on the look of the show. It's REALLY great. The show uses a new type of camera that doesn't use film. The show looks so clear it's almost real and everything looks really sharp and clear. The show is a visual feast, basically. Also, there are some very realistic bodies in the show, too, which makes it all the more convincing.



    So, all in all, while "Night Stalker" was by no means perfect, in some ways it was better than the other genre offerings out there, and deserved a long life. I'll miss it.moreless

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  • 5.0

    Not a good sign.

    By d_parker, Oct 24, 2005

    I loved the original series and had medium hopes for the new series.



    Very disappointed with the first episode but I'm prepared to give it a chance.



    Townsend does a not bad job. Not sure I like his female sidekick or the Jimmy Olsen wannabe but we'll see how they work out. I watch this show for Kolchak, not a rehash of the X-Files with Mulder/Scully being replaced by Kolchak/Eye Candy.



    The original Kolchak had a nice sense of humour and this show could use some of that.

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  • 7.2

    The opening monologue, brittish accent and a nice-looking girl as a sidekick. What can get wrong?

    By lindhoffen, Oct 06, 2005

    I didn't have any high hopes for this one, haven't seen the apparent old series so I can't compare this to anything. It was a decent interesting opening with nice plot twists.



    Unfortunaly I found it mostly very boring.

    I'm sorry, but I did.



    It was a fairly unoriginal pilote, with not enough questions to get me hooked. Maybe the following episodes will be better. One can only hope.

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  • 7.5

    Well what can i say but, almost riveting..

    By davesy, Oct 04, 2005

    Once i found out that Chris Carter had used the original show as inspiration for the X-Files I started digging up information on the original Night Stalker series. I loved them, very well done for a show that old. So once i found out that they were re-making it, i was pretty excited.



    After atching the pilot though, i'm not too sure. I thought the story was okay - very much like an early X-Files case, but apart from that it didn't really seem to stand out. What with some excellent shows like "Lost" making the creepy TV a hit again, studios seem to be rushing out all kinds of shows to compete. Unfortunately i reckon that Night Stalker may get lost along the wayside, which is a shame.



    Stuart Townsend was good in it, nice to see a brit taking the lead in a new show, and the car he was driving was a good choice!



    Nothing much else i can say really, i'll keep watching and hopefully things will improve.moreless

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  • 9.5

    It's quite good-looking, probably the best-looking show among the rookie bunch.

    By epc9902, Oct 04, 2005

    The biggest drawback of this drama is its possible cancelation and that's about it. "Night Stalker" has a surprisingly good potential. It's quite good-looking, probably the best-looking show among the rookie bunch. It has cinematography worthy of a Michael Mann film and the meditative music is Philip Glass inspired.



    But the biggest reason to root for this underdog is Stuart Townsend's lead performance as reporter Carl Kolchak. I was expecting a bland act, but Townsend creates an engaging mixture of oddity, mystique, and charm to his character. Plus, Kolchak is such a rockin' last name. Gabrielle Union, as fellow reproter Perri Reed, is good but needs to up her game; And to quote her character in a certain cheerleading movie, she better "bring it!"



    As for story potentials, it is very close to WB's "Supernatural." Both are effectively scary but "Night Stalker" is more grounded and slicker in its execution. In the pilot, it pulls a stylistic switcheroo where the monster is atop the bed and the scared child is underneath.



    I hope ABC and viewers will give this a chance. CSI is still entertaining but it's such a familiar fare, and it's about time we fire Trump and "The Apprentice."moreless

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  • 8.0

    A surprisingly strong pilot episode with lots of potential, but will the network lend full support?

    By entil2001, Oct 01, 2005

    When this series was announced, I was a little worried. The original series was something rather unique in tone, and it also had a quirky sense of humor. This version is firmly entrenched in its dark tone, and there’s a remarkable level of non-apologetic violence. Add to that the fact that Staurt Townsend is not as viewer-friendly a face as Darrin McGavin, and there’s a lot going against it.



    I was also concerned with the fact that this has such an ironic pedigree. Chris Carter created “X-Files” as something of an update to the original “Kolchak” with a darker edge. “X-Files” has become a cultural icon and a massive influence to current genre hits. This new “Night Stalker” is clearly evolved from “X-Files”, right down to the executive producers and director. A couple of times, I felt like Mulder and Scully would pop out of nowhere, as if they belonged there all along.



    All that in mind, as much as I knew it would be disturbing and dark, I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. I was honestly worried about the characters at several points in the story, and Frank Spotnitz actually overcame my usual dislike of the “child in jeopardy” cliché. I’m not sure what I thought of the actual creatures involved, or how they intersect with Kolchak’s past history, but I’m certainly interested in seeing how those marks all interconnect.



    One of the more interesting elements of the Joss Whedon Buffyverse concept was the idea of societal willful ignorance. In short, when things happen outside of what society considers to be normal, society will find ways to minimize or ignore those things as a psychological defense mechanism. Of course, the side effect is that individuals don’t have the information they need to defend themselves from things they don’t know about.



    That concept is alive and well in this series, and I’m happy about that. I hope it gets more exploration over time. I also like the fact that Kolchak is not a law enforcement officer, and so he has few weapons to use if things get dangerous. Granted, he conveniently had climbing gear in his car for the pilot, but in future episodes, I hope we get to see him being more resourceful.



    Gabrielle Union is one hot co-star; those legs are rather nicely toned, as her scantily-clad internet search habits revealed. I’m not so sure about the tag-along Jain, though I like that he’s more of an ally for Kolchak than another adversary. Agent Fain wasn’t the best rendered character in the world, but there’s time for his character to become more substantial with future appearances.



    The real problem for this series will be the massive competition from “CSI” and “The Apprentice” (“Reunion” won’t be competition for much longer, if it doesn’t improve drastically). It also doesn’t help that “Alias” was tossed into even more powerful competition, so this series won’t get a strong lead-in. ABC can afford to be patient these days, however, so maybe there’s hope.

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