Almost Human 1.02 “Skin” Review

AH.105.3

One of the things that remained strong in Almost Human was the continuing establishment of Dorian and Kennex as a team as well as individual characters. Some of the best scenes in “Skin” were whenever Dorian wouldn’t understand something from a human perspective and then ask the questions that the human race continues to ask every day.

How can some people be sure that after death you go to a better place when there is no way of knowing?  That was fascinating to feature in Dorian’s character, but what also helped was Kennex’s response that it’s about giving hope to people. In the pilot, Urban’s character was presented as a rough and damaged man, but in this episode he shows a softer side.

The scene when he is asking the child whose mother was kidnapped questions was a powerful scene and something that viewers should take notice of. This isn’t a non-smiling detective as most of them are portrayed in television today, but instead this is someone that can actually still be damaged while having some positivity.

The way that these writers write Kennex and Dorian is fantastic, especially whenever they are arguing because that is one of the funniest aspects of their relationship. “You’re scanning my (you know)?!” was without doubt the funniest line in that conversation and Dorian’s responses just makes it more fun. It’s nice that they are keeping the balance between comedic and dramatic moments in this relationship.

So how did the writers try to top their second episode after an amazing pilot? They did it with the bots. This was a really struggling aspect throughout the whole episode because it was both disturbing and a little bit interesting.

Maybe the pacing in the exposition was a bit too fast, but it was at certain points difficult to understand how these bots were working. It’s understandable that the writers are trying to convey that this series is set in the future where society has changed a lot, but bots? It worked a bit as the case of the week, but it was definitely a head-scratcher.

Hopefully the next cases will be a bit more intriguing and less disturbing as the season progresses. Obviously the point was that this element was supposed to be a difficult thing to watch with the concept as well as the make-up process when it came to the skin-factor.

A strong aspect for this new show is definitely their amazing special effects and their future structure. Everything from the weapons, the cars and the buildings has the right futuristic look.

One issue with the pilot was that the supporting cast didn’t really have much to do and didn’t really shine that much. Last night, they were featured a bit more, especially Valerie Stahl (Minka Kelly) and Rudy Lom (Mackenzie Crook). Some shows manage to hit it off immediately when it comes to making all the characters on a new show equally interesting in their first episode.

Almost Human didn’t get there in their pilot. But there is most likely going to be bigger episodes for these strong actors in upcoming episodes where they can get more fleshed out. The actors are definitely showing that the great acting is there, they just need the right scripts and they have probably already received them.

Overall, while “Skin” wasn’t a really strong follow-up from the pilot, it was still a pretty intriguing episode. Second episodes are always a bit challenging to pull off well after a strong pilot. They keep on developing the characters and letting the audience explore more who these characters are. Despite the oddness of the episode, Almost Human is still a show that has potential.

Almost Human airs on Monday nights, 8/7c on FOX.

Image ©2013 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: Liane Hentscher/FOX

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