User Score: 162
After "The Walking Dead", I thought it would have gotten to writers that viewers are more than fed up with characters that don't show any depth at all and that don't develop. Yet while technologically our movies are going three-dimensional, characters on TV aren't even complex enough to fill in the two dimensions they already got. Sadly, "Falling Skies" doesn't make a difference.
Especially in SciFi, there's a desperate need for well-developed characters, for people who defy cliches and who bear in them at least part of the complexity life just has. It's been done in drama series all over - think Six Feet Under, The Wire or Breaking Bad. In "Falling Skies", actors are assigned roles as solid as thin air - you've got the Vietnam, sorry Iraq Veteran who has his blind spots written on his forehead. There's the history professor teaching military lessons without ever using them at all - I mean it would've been nice having the guy actually employ any tactics that were brought to good use during the Roman times or whenever. Yet all he does is telling people they should keep going because it has happened before that more powerful invaders were driven back by inferior defenders. Good job, professor! There's the inevitable friends and familiy drama stuff ("my son has been kidnapped by aliens!" / "he ran away when my wife died!" / "I want to fight!" - "But you're only 16 years old!") - shocking tragedy stuff I care so little about.
That all said, the basic premise sounded interesting, and it was basically this setting that kept me watching. Jumping in 6 months after the invasion from outer space offers a whole universe of potentially interesting things to endeavour. But to do that, the show's inventors would have to think about them first. They could make it interesting in military terms - who's using what tactics, maybe the aliens have a problem with their resource base (they can't have brought everything they possibly need with them, space travel is expensive), how are they actually organised? There's been some very brief signs of it, but making the Skitters something like soldier-slaves to the "real" aliens does not make it as thrilling as the borg stuff from Star Trek did. It makes the Skitters more boring, not less, because now I don't care about them at all. Watching six-legged mindless alien cannon fodder is just not my idea of engaging entertainment. There's just too many things like this, where I think a good opportunity has been wasted. It's even more annoying since a lot of things indeed do work in this show,and it's solidly produced in technical terms. But please - get some good writing for this show!