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Nightflyers - Series Premiere - Review

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The heavy marketing for Nightflyers has made it very clear that the horror sci-fi show is based on a novella by George R.R. Martin, the mind behind Game of Thrones.

Unfortunately, the Nightflyers premiere does not come even close to the quality of the hit HBO fantasy. It is an exhaustively drear and generic haunted ship in space odyssey, but more on that later.

Set in 2093, the show follows an international crew of explorers who hope to make contact with alien life at the edge of the solar system, in hopes to find a solution to the Earth's dying planet.

Some on the crew don't believe these aliens are good news and that they are heading to their doom, like in the case of Rowan (Angus Sampson) who joined the expedition just for the opportunity to see extraterrestrial life face to face, dangerous or not.

But before they even get to that potential danger, the crew must cope with an L-1 - a telepathic empath who no one trusts, but who they apparently need in order to communicate with the alien.

Nightflyers begins well enough. We see our main protagonist, psychiatrist Agatha Matheson being hunted down in the ship from a crazed man, who we later know as Rowan, Shining style, ending with her warning, "do not bring the Nightflyer back to earth!" before killing herself.

But what follows after that opening sequence was a show full of nondescript characters, stiff dialogue, some unnecessary sex, and just an unbearably drear pilot from beginning to end.

The best attempt at character development was with Karl D'Branin (Eoin Macken) who we find out took this mission to escape his family struggles at home, but even this backstory feels trite.

Granted, there is some mystery that adds minimal intrigue. The captain, who only mysteriously appears as a hologram, is a somewhat compelling character. There is also the mystery of who is sabotaging the ship, as well as, the motivations behind the L-1.However, if the exhausting premiere means anything, it may be quite the chore to get to these answers

Overall, Nightflyers is no Game of Thrones. It is more like a marginally better TV version of Event Horizon (not really a compliment considering how terrible that 90s film was). Everything from the characters to even the look of the ship feels like nothing we haven't seen before.


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