The Dead Zone

Season 5 Episode 1

Forbidden Fruit

Aired Sunday 10:00 PM Jun 18, 2006 on USA

Episode Fan Reviews (3)

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out of 10
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  • This was a good opening episode to season 5.

    The Dead Zone is now onto season 5 and i think they started this season fairly well. This episode really continued from the last although i was shocked when they decided to kill of Greg Stillsons girl friend just as she was beginning to become a main character. This show is finally beginning to pick up the past which is good. I hope season 5 is as good as season 4 was. This episode further shows us what a threat Stillson can and will be. I wonder how it will all end. Anyway i am staying with season 5 because it is very good.
  • Lack of context and slow pacing degrade what could have been a solid opener

    A funny thing happens when you take a 22-episode season, split it in half, and try to refer to the mid-season two-parter as a season finale and season premiere. It’s not always as powerful as one would like it to be. One could debate the differences of opinion and interpretation regarding the 22-episode order and how it was supposed to hash out, but the bottom line is that the fourth season ended in a weird place and the fifth season starts in a decidedly muddled fashion.

    Let me put it this way. My wife, who usually has no problem picking up details from a couple seasons earlier, couldn’t remember what the heck was going on and who everyone was. She got up and left halfway through the show. I stuck it out, and while I’m glad that I did (since I like where the story is going), I have to acknowledge that this wasn’t as good a premiere as it could have been.

    I’m a little off-put by the lack of actual promotion for this season. Sure, there’s been the occasional clever commercial and a good amount of press, but “The 4400” was given a spotlight and a recap special to get the audience back in the swing of things. Granted, this entire season of “Dead Zone” has been in the can for over a year, but couldn’t someone spring a little extra time and effort, especially if the rumors of another season are valid?

    Even looking back at my comments for the fourth season finale (re-watching wasn’t an option, since the fourth season box set was nowhere to be found in my usual haunts), it took me forever to remember Janus and his place in the DZ universe. At this rate, it’s pretty clear. Janus is like the Devil behind Stillson’s Antichrist, right down to the near-limitless ability to maneuver. And like the Devil, Janus offered Johnny a throne of his own, should he choose to stay out of the way.

    The interesting thing here is that Johnny has been operating more or less alone in his fight against Stillson, at least when it comes to having solid local allies. The emergence of Janus as a recognized evil behind Stillson’s bid for power could swing the odds in Johnny’s favor. Purdy is in a compromised position, but he has to believe Johnny now, in the wake of Miranda’s death. Who knows what could come of that?

    It’s a difficult thing, because on the one hand, the series has been stumbling with the more episodic fare over the past couple seasons. It’s almost as if the clever twists for visions and mysteries have been covered and the writers aren’t sure where to go for that next creative element. (Though, granted, each “twist” will either click with a viewer or won’t, making it very subjective.) Usually I would point to serialized elements as the cure, since they provide the writers with a larger context and something of a creative safety net. (It looks to help “The 4400” quite a bit this season.)

    In fact, I’ve often said that a stronger focus on the series mythology is needed to give the series a proper send-off this season, if it is indeed the final stretch. The political and moral questions behind Stillson and Johnny’s continual efforts to derail the man’s aspirations can be very involving. But it can also get hopelessly tangled without the proper context. I feel like this episode was missing that context. Let me put it this way: if someone happened to be a new viewer, would they have any clue what was going on?

    Another thing that was a little disappointing was the focus away from the usual supporting cast. Bruce was there to support Johnny in his fight against Stillson and Janus, and Miranda was prominent enough. But where was everyone else? Perhaps that was addressed in the first part of the story, but that’s where the lack of clear context kicks in. If this had aired immediately after the fourth season finale, then it might have seemed less detached and disjointed.

    (As a sidenote: I also have a podcast associated with my various reviews called “Dispatches from Tuzenor”. An episode later in the week will be related to this episode of “The Dead Zone”, so it might be something of interest . Go to if you want to listen!)
  • Malcolm Janus bears his fangs in the solid season premiere

    After a long wait, The Dead Zone finally returned on Sunday night. And it was well worth the wait.

    This episode had everything you could have hoped for. The beautiful Laura Harris returned once again as Miranda Ellis, and gave another memorable performance. Martin Donovan, after sending chills throughout season 4 (specifically in the finale), gave another stellar performance. His character significantly developed with this episode, making him a character fans will love to hate. Janus has now become a full-blown sinister character in the series, showing that he can (and will) do anything to push Stillson towards the White House.

    And I don't want to spoil anything, but Stillson\'s body count seems to be rising at an alarming rate.

    The ending of the episode sent chills down my spine, not quite to the extent of last year's finale, but definetly enough to the point that it took a few minutes to absorve how sick Malcolm Janus truly is.

    A great way to kick off a season full of promise.