WonderCon 2015: American Odyssey
American Odyssey premieres tomorrow night on NBC. It’s no light Spring series, though. Rather, it’s the next in the line of post Homeland shows centering in on a woman in a military/government position. That’s how I would describe it, at least, if I were in the habit of being reductive or dismissive.
Actually, the pilot, which screened here at WonderCon today, sets up a smart and twisty conspiracy thriller, nested in the middle of which is a modern update of Homer’s epic poem. So far, there’s no one with one eye but the backbone concerns the attempts of a soldier, played by Anna Friel, to return home after her platoon was wiped out, possibly on the orders the American military and an American bank.
Friel’s Odelle is only one of the three characters who could be described as leads. Peter Facinelli plays a lawyer who works for thr aforementioned banks but whose curiosity and moral instincts lead to him investigating in his free time. Then we have a rich kid turned anti-capitalist activist whose connection to the rest of the story is more tenuous but which is intriguingly teased by the end of the pilot. There’s also a trio of villains played with assured and effective villainy by Treat Williams, Jay O. Sanders and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje.
The pilot hints at a show that is confident in its story. There are a number of reveals and shocks but nothing that approaches overload or lily gilding. With a solid core of performances and an established sense of forward momentum, this could be one to keep an eye on.