TV Show Review

TV Review: OUTCAST: Season 2, Episode 1: Bad Penny [Cinemax]

Greta Glenn Outcast 2.01

Outcast: Bad Penny Review

Cinemax’s Outcast, season 2, episode 1, ‘Bad Penny,’ pretty much picked up where season 1 left off. The jury’s still out, as to whether this was a good thing. After big reveals to both Outcast Kyle (Patrick Fugit), and his Outcast-off daughter, Amber (Madeleine McGraw), all that was left was picking up pieces, and picking up trails. The starting point for both was more than a little familiar, though.

Since all roads lead to Rome, the damned-dad-and-daughter-duo – last seen embarking on a much-needed getaway – were back within county limits. Apparently, their ‘popularity’ kept that getaway short, as their return was in time to catch Anderson (Philip Glenister) still gawking at his last act of Evangelical vigilantism (evigilantical?).

With fallout for this action yet to come, the Anderson tailspin seems set to continue, this season. He did, however, manage to find a more populist, less public, and less institutionalized congregation; so maybe he’ll be getting back on the useful side of the fight, before too long. On the other hand, he wasted little time in martyring himself, over supposedly putting a brat on the barbie; so that tail’s gonna keep spinning, all right.

The Occupy Man-meat movement was still a thing-in-progress; so Chief Giles (Reg E. Cathey) was still a Team Bad Touch asset, anyway. He also had a new upstart on the force, to break in, along with this side gig. Briana Venskus has been noticeable, for bit parts on shows like The Walking Dead & Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.; so I expect her Officer Nunez character to keep the Chief ‘honest,’ this season.

Team Bad Touch did get some action in, for the season opener, by getting back to business from the series opener. Even the wrinkles to the execution seemed formulaic, at this point; and I found myself being more intrigued by the obviousness to a stunt double, than the climactic confrontation (they could’ve at least gotten the man a matching wig). The resolution left the emphasis on one such wrinkle, however; and the planned resolution, to one act of the Megan (Wrenn Schmidt Occupation, promises to be a point of contention, between Megan & Kyle.

As much as season 1 emphasized Kyle’s arch-role to the series mythology, it seems groundwork will be laid down for Amber’s walk in his shoes – if not his shadow – but it will likely take a while, before Team Bad Touch takes to tapping her obvious potential. Her strained reunion with Holly (Callie Brook McClincy) suggested as much, anyway – this is mostly just my own expectations talking.

As far as such expectations go: it sort of says something, when you can’t help but feel threatened by one of those meal order ticket spike thingies, for the opening flashback scene. Maybe it was the extreme closeups for it, or maybe it was the notion that this is the sort of thing a horror story could get some quick shock-value out of; but when the moment came, I couldn’t decide whether to fault the show for telegraphing, or credit it for delivering (order up – ding!).

Would-be shockers, like Ogden (Pete Burris) attempting to self-resolve his role, were expected; and until I figure this to be a good or bad thing, I’ll have to work out where the average viewer might fall, on this scale. Joss Whedon could no longer surprise me, by the time Angel came along; but, by the same token, he rarely disappoints. I’m going to need time to figure out whether Outcast is becoming predictable, or just getting in tune with my standards.

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About the author

Sam Joseph

Sam is an Avid consumer/observer of Geek culture, and collector of Fanboy media from earliest memory. Armchair sociologist and futurist. Honest critic with satirical if not absurdist­­ wit with some experience in comics/ animation production.

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