It’s been said that the new upcoming ABC series called FlashForward won’t be a rehash of the novel of the same name by Robert Sawyer. In fact it’s being said that it may not be what you expect at all.

FlashForward is about a moment in time when everyone on Earth blacks out for 2 minutes and 17 seconds.  During that time, people experience visions of where they’ll be on April 29th, 2010, or 6 months into their future (That could be creepy.)

The mass black out does have its tragic side effects – People are doing everyday things when the black out happens and this creates what is described as a semi-apocalyptic moment as planes, trains and automobiles crash with unconscious people at the controls.  It’s here that the FlashForward pilot kicks in, introducing the main characters of the show.

Impressions And Thoughts

Reported first impressions of a preview of the pilot says that the series has tremendous potential but it seems a bit lacking in fleshing out the characters.  This to me, can go either way.  Are characters rushed or are they properly developed and we learn about them as the story advances from episode to episode?

The first season itself is going to be self-contained.  In that I mean that there will be a complete story and the season finale will answer the question of what that first black out was all about with no loose ends left dangling.  More specifically, we’ll see the characters catching up to the futures that they’ve envisioned.

Oddly, because of the FlashForward premise, the show is getting compared to Lost.

Sure, everyone on Earth has visions of their own future, but Lost has a whole different methodology of using time jumps. They usually used past moments (and future moments) to develop the characters and the direction their destinies will take them.  To me, the premise from FlashForward seems completely different.  Of course, I could be wrong.

Producers are saying that as you watch the show, you may develop an idea that leads you to think you know where the story is leading us and they’re promising us that we won’t.  Meh… I’ve been told that before.  I’m tough on sales pitches and we’ll see how things pan out and if this can be believed or not.  Unfortunately, by the time we’ve invested our time into the show, it will either be too late or we’ll be in for a pleasant surprise.

Bits And Notes

First on my list of incidentals is the title – It used to be 2 words: “Flash” & “Forward.”  The space has been surgically removed and the title of the show is now one big word: FlashForward.  I guess that makes the marketing sufficiently unique so it doesn’t get confused with regular day-to-day references of the same phrase.

Second on my list of bits is a curious item indeed: actor Dominic Monaghan.  He played the ill-fated Charlie on Lost and if you’ve been paying attention to ABC’s commercials, he’s in an ad with other stars from other ABC shows. This got the internet all abuzz about his possible return to Lost.  Subsequent reports then said that he was not returning to Lost but will be showing up in another ABC show.  That show has been surmised to be FastForward.  But others are taking a guess that this might be a double cross to keep us guessing and that he just might be returning to the confused time line show, Lost.  Me, I am fantasizing that it’s a wicked crossover between shows, if even but for a moment.  Maybe someone is watching Lost in FastForward and ABC sneak peaks something to us in a vision.

FlashForward will star Joseph Fiennes, John Cho (Abrams Star Trek), Seth McFarlane (Yes, the man of many voices), Jack Davenport (Swingtown, Pirates of the Caribbean movies), Sonya Walger (Who played Penny from Lost), Courtney B. Vance (ER, Law & Order: Criminal Intent), Alex Kingston (ER), Brian O’Byrne (The Brotherhood), Christine Woods, Zachary Knighton and Peyton List (Big Shots, Windfall).

The show will be executive produced by David S. Goyer (The Dark Knight) and Brannon Braga (Threshold, 24).  Goyer is one of two showrunners, along with Marc Guggenheim (Eli Stone)

Don’t fret if you noticed that Brannon Braga is on board this project.  He is still going to co-executive produce 24.

Below is a quick flash of a preview from FlashForward.  No, I really did not intend for that to be a pun, but I’ll take the credit.

Is The Premise Sustainable?

The premise of the show initially does not appeal greatly to me.

But if you dwell on the aspect of what to do if you get a glimpse of your future, that gets me wondering.  If you see your future, can you change it or is it set?  Do you do things differently and still end up there, or not do anything and still end up at your envisioned future?  Either choice of action or non-action will create its own set of questions that are hard to avoid.  This kind of thinking has me wondering how the writers will handle this premise and now I am curious.  Add to this the disasters that seem to come about from everyone blacking out and just maybe we’ll have some interesting angles to fill the voids that the theme of the show might otherwise leave dangling.

What do we think as a group, gang?  Action or non-action?  Does the story look promising or does the creative team make you more interested than the story itself?

FlashForward will premiere on Thursday, September 24th.

Sources: LA Times, TIME Tuned In, Sci Fi Wire, Sci Fi Wire, E Online