DVD Review: Resurrection: The Complete First Season

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How would you handle being confronted by a deceased friend or family member, in person, as if they had never passed away? Over the course of the eight episodes making up Resurrection: The Complete First Season, ABC’s new hit series, that scenario is explored by the townsfolk of Arcadia, Missouri. The primary reason the series’ is so compelling is that the fantastical concept is treated with thoughtful sensitivity. Though there is plenty of intrigue, the slow-build approach works in the show’s favor. By the end of episode eight, it’s a good bet viewers will be itching to see where it’s all headed (ABC has confirmed a second season).

A young boy, Jacob (Landon Gimenez), suddenly wakes up in a field in China. He makes his way back to his home in Arcadia with the help of Immigration and Customs Agent Marty Bellamy (Omar Epps). His parents, Lucille (Frances Fisher) and Henry (Kurtwood Smith), are flabbergasted as Jacob has been dead for over 30 years. More “returned” individuals begin to migrate to Arcadia, slowly at first but increasing steadily. Agent Marty works with Dr. Maggie Langston (Devin Kelley) to try to come up with some answers, but none are easily presented. Maggie, though just an infant at the time, was present for her cousin Jacob’s death by drowning—which occurred at the same time and place as her own mother’s death. She and her father, Arcadia’s Sheriff Fred Langston (Matt Craven), are shocked to discover there may be a darker truth behind the long-accepted explanation for the dual drowning.

Resurrection 2 (380x254).jpgResurrection wisely keeps the supernatural elements subtle, choosing to focus on the core group of characters and their emotional reactions to re-meeting the dead. Landon Gimenez does consistently great work, always hinting that Jacob knows more about his own reappearance than he lets on. Skepticism runs high, particularly with Sheriff Langston. As the suspicious sheriff, Matt Craven delivers the season’s most complex performance. The sheriff is not a bad guy, per se, but realistically transitions from understandably suspicious (especially of what appears to be his re-born nephew Jacob) to openly paranoid. Determined to figure out if these “new” versions are, in fact, truly who they claim to be (as opposed to some kind of extraterrestrial double, a la Invasion of the Body Snatchers), Epps and Kelley make a great team.

In this day of social media and viral videos, it’s a little tough to swallow that the events in Arcadia could possibly be as contained as even as long as they are. Considering that the emergence of perfect doubles—both physically and mentally—of the deceased would be the most monumental occurrence in humankind’s history, the events in Arcadia would explode across the world almost instantly. That aside, Resurrection: The Complete First Season offers an involving start to what will hopefully continue to be a compelling series. The two-disc DVD set includes a pair of very brief promotional featurettes, a few deleted scenes, and a blooper reel.

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Chaz Lipp is a Seattle-based freelance writer whose focus is music and film. As “The Other Chad,” he has written for the online magazine Blogcritics since 2008. When he’s not writing, Chaz can be found trolling jazz clubs, attempting to find somewhere to play his sax (whether anyone wants to hear…

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