“Minority Report” recap: “Pilot”

This week has been one of the roughest weeks I’ve had. I’ve moved my site, had trouble with my email, and all my tech issues caused me to get behind on the premiere of Fall TV 2015! Color me frustrated, tired, and annoyed from getting headaches. But journaling is not what we’re here for, is it? We’re here to discuss Minority Report

Here’s the official synopsis from Fox:

The future is coming.

Based on the international blockbuster film by executive producer Steven Spielberg and the first of his films to be adapted for television, MINORITY REPORT follows the unlikely partnership between a man haunted by the future and a cop haunted by her past, as they race to stop the worst crimes of the year 2065 before they happen.

Set in Washington, D.C., it is 10 years after the demise of Precrime, a law enforcement agency tasked with identifying and eliminating criminals…before their crimes were committed. To carry out this brand of justice, the agency used three precogs – “precognitives” Dash, Arthur and Agatha – who were able to see the future. Now, in 2065, crime-solving is different, and justice leans more on sophisticated and trusted technology than on the instincts of the precogs.

Precog DASH (Stark Sands, “Inside Llewyn Davis”) – driven by his terrifying, but fragmented visions – now has returned in secret to help a brash, but shrewd, police detective, LARA VEGA (Meagan Good, “Think Like A Man” franchise, “Californication”), attempt to stop the murders that he predicts.

As they navigate this future America, they will forge an uneasy alliance with Dash’s manipulative twin brother, ARTHUR (Nick Zano, “90210”), an empire-builder who uses his ability to advance his own self-interest, and elude others who will stop at nothing to exploit their precognitive abilities. Also complicating matters is Vega’s newly appointed boss WILL BLAKE (Wilmer Valderrama, “From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series”); and Dash and Arthur’s ingenious, but reclusive, foster sister, AGATHA (Laura Regan, “Mad Men,” “Unbreakable”), who only wants the best for her two brothers, but may be playing a longer game than anybody knows.

A drama of crime and conspiracy, this is a timeless story of connection: two lost souls, Dash and Vega, who find friendship, purpose and redemption in each other.

Overall, I thought the episode was great. Actually, I thought it was better than I expected. Having been burned by Almost Human for loving it, I decided to gird my loins. But not only did I enjoy watching Minority Report‘s pilot, I felt like it had the legs to get stronger and stay for at least two seasons, if not more. However, the show did open soft, according to outlets, so we’ll see how strong the show gets as it goes along.

As it stands now, there’s a lot of fun things that make Minority Report a hit, and not for reasons concerning plot (which was, by the way pretty solid). Here’s the rundown:

Lara Vega and Dash: Congrats to Meagan Good and Stark Sands for landing such great roles on a show that has such potential. It’s exciting to see Meagan on TV once again since her time on NBC’s Deception. Of course, Good is also on another TV show this year, NBC’s Mr. Robinson. But Good has always seemed made for drama to me, and this seems like just the right kind of venue for her.

Also, there’s tons of “buddy cop” potential between Lara and Dash. Also-also, there’s tons of romantic potential, or at least lustful potential. Dash is already feeling lust’s pull, since he stopped on the picture of Lara in a bikini. Yes, Dash, we are keeping an eye on you.

Lara and Dash are probably being compared to Abbie and Ichabod for various reasons, some of which I’ve outlined in my latest Entertainment Weekly Community post. But I must say that I think it’s great that Minority Report has carved out a sweet spot between Sleepy Hollow and its other thematic parent, Almost Human. 

Wilmer Valderama: Who isn’t a fan of Wilmer Valderama? He’s Fez, for goodness’ sake! He was the host of Yo’ Mama, on which he gave away “cash mooonnneeeyy!” He just seems like a good guy, and he hasn’t been on TV in a while. It’s good to see him in this kind of a role, something that’s a lot different than something he’s done.

DIVERSITY: Can we discuss how much diversity there was on this show? I know “diversity” is a buzzword right now and can get diluted the more we talk about the word, but seriously, there’s value in seeing a show that paints a future that is diverse in its racial and cultural makeup. For instance, the main cop characters are all characters of color. That’s quite astounding and appreciated.

Even better is that whoever was behind the casting decisions thought outside the box. Take for instance the politician and his family. Minority Report could have stopped at just having an interracial marriage represented by a white person and a non-white person. But instead, the show had a black man, an Asian woman, and their child. It’s been a while, like since Flash Forward, that we’ve seen black/Asian relationships on TV. Before Flash Forward, I don’t think we’ve seen any black/Asian or non-white/non-white interracial relationships on TV. Kudos to Minority Report for showing a truly multicultural society.

A view of a much more respectful society: It was subtle, but did you notice how Lara’s Washington NFL shirt had a different name on it and a different logo on it? It just goes to show how, in the future, no one’s going to be up in arms over the name change. People will still buy NFL stuff. It doesn’t take much to be respectful of other people in society, does it?

So let’s get into the show itself. The storyline was cool; having Lara and Dash get to know each other (and have Dash save Lara) while solving a crime involving a pre-murderer and some birds outfitted with some sort of killing agent. But, even though there were tons of great elements, including the mysteries surrounding the pre-cogs, whatever Agatha’s problem is, Dash’s Lex Luthor-ish brother, and the tension-filled relationship between Lara and Will (Valderama)–whatever that “tension” is, you tell me–I just need to see more. I need to learn more about this world. I’ve only seen a taste of it and I need more to make a much more rounded opinion.

Overall, though, I like Minority Report. What did you think about it? Write about it below!

L-R: Stark Sands and Meagan Good in MINORITY REPORT airing Monday, Sep. 21 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. CR: Bruce MacCauley / FOX. © 2015 FOX Broadcasting.