Premiere Review “Second Chance” [Spoiler Alert]

Jan 18, 2016


Contains spoiler for Season Premiere - “A Suitable Donor”

“What would you do with a second chance? Before you answer, let me give you some advice, second chances can be a real monster” - Jimmy Pritchard

In the beginning of the show we are introduced to Jimmy Pritchard, his son Duval, and his granddaughter Gracie.  Jimmy is a disgraced retired police officer, whose age has crept up on him. You can tell he is really hard on his son, an FBI agent, and a father, who wants to take his daughter on a college tour trip.  This scene illustrates the contrast between between father and son; Jimmy prioritizes work, while Duval is a devoted parent.

imageThen we are introduced to Mary and Otto Goodwin, with a technological divide, separating the characters from one another.  Otto is incredibly smart, having created his own language and then taught “Twin Speak” to Mary. Otto also created an algorithm for LookingGlass,  a major social media site.  Mary is his connection to the world, helps him publicize and build the company to reach over a billion users. Later we find out that Mary has cancer and the chemotherapy is not working for her.  Since the diagnosis, Otto has found a way to save her life; by bringing back the dead.  His cure involves converting the white blood cells into regenerative substance to fight off illnesses and diseases.

Meanwhile, (old) Jimmy goes to Duval’s house while his children are away.  He catches Duval’s FBI partner rummaging through his son’s belongings.  Duval’s partner ends up throwing Jimmy over the edge of a bridge and his death is ruled a suicide. The media goes haywire over his death, almost as if they were waiting for it to happen, due to his past; this is where find out more details as to how he was a corrupt cop.  Then Otto discovers that Jimmy Pritchard is a genetic match to be able use his white blood cells to save his sister.  Starting the experiment without Mary’s permission, we see the silent desperation of a brother trying to save his twin sister; an attempt to salvage his only connection to the world.  A decision that goes against Mary’s own beliefs, “Our parents believed in God, Otto.  They would have said what we are about to do should be life to God.” Otto convinces his sister that he needs to do bring Jimmy back, because she is running out of time.image

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Once Jimmy is brought back to life;  he’s not really himself, but the best possible version of himself.  Meanwhile Mary tries to make Jimmy understand that he’s been brought back from the dead.  Jimmy’s realization that he died gave me chills, as he displays his newfound strength,“…I fell. I, I died,” then passes out from a sedative.  When he wakes up Mary gives her explanation another try, “You are the first to journey all the way back, to get another chance, don’t you want it?” 

Jimmy, from the viewers perspective, is battling himself internally.  Does he want the second chance, to turn his life around from the shame that he left behind in his old life?  Before we receive the answer he runs away to a find a place where he actually belongs.  The writers suggest that he receives help from is a prostitute; indulging in activities that a man of 75 years might miss at an old age.   As Jimmy is gallivanting around, side effects from the experiment start to kick in.  Mary finds him and brings him back to the lab.  She explains that for the experiment to work, Jimmy has to reach a time limit before he has to be rejuvenated again.  Mary also presents him with the reasons why her life is so important to Otto. I felt like during imagethis scene we see Jimmy feel like what Mary is doing is right; its against nature but there’s good intentions behind the action. Death is sad, but we must all accept it at some point. In exchange for accepting that he is going to be used as a instrument to keep her alive, Mary offers to help him with another mission, to aid his son (Duval).  There’s a little flirting between them at the end of the scene – I really hope their relationship builds more throughout the show.

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Jimmy’s son, Duval, is in for the same fate as Jimmy (going over the side of a bridge) but of course Jimmy is able to save him. Duval realizes that there is a of connection between them, but can’t put his finger on how. He asks Jimmy to do a blood test with him to see if they are related; I also can’t wait to see this pan out. How is Duval going to find out more? Will Jimmy lie and say he is his brother or is a distaimagent relative? Or will Jimmy tell him the truth?

This show caught my eye because of the idea of getting a second chance at life is fascinating. The way they present the concept is very unique and the actors/actresses, so far, have done a wonderful job at projecting all the feelings that someone in their shoes would feel. The underlying themes of regret, family expectations, sacrifice, and justice, all help drive the question home; what would you do with a second chance?

Episode Rating: 7

Follow Staff Writer: @prmiller2

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