Alphas has been written and directed by Zak Penn who was also the writer of X-Men 2 and 3 movies. He also serves as an executive producer in the show which airs on the Syfy channel. So it shouldn’t be a surprise to anybody that this show has an X-Men feel to it. Other than that it also seems to derive some elements from another hit show ‘Heroes’ and the movie ‘Wanted’. Here, people with special ability are called ‘Alphas’ and their incredible powers come with a price, which is refreshing to see.
Now that’s out of the way, lets dive in to the story and characters. Dr. Lee Rosen is the leader of a group of people who have superpowers. He is more of a doctor, like Xavier, than the leader you would expect and its refreshing for a tv show. He juggles between babysitting and his work of a therapist who gets the desired results from his team of Alphas. Watching him interact with Don, an agent, offered comedic elements which will be a breather in the days to come.
Bill Harken has superhuman strength and he is also a FBI agent. His chemistry with the team is lacking and he just doesn’t seem to consider the others as his equals, probably because all of them come from normal upbringing and don’t have the necessary professional quality in them. Nina, the hottie, has the power of hyperinduction. She can override the willpower in others and that’s a cool Jedi mind trick. Rachel has the power of synesthesia. that is she is able to enhance any one of her senses while all other senses shut down. Gary has the power of transduction. He is able to see all wireless electromagnetic wavelengths, making him the ultimate snoop.
Cameron is brainwashed into murdering a police suspect in a closed room, using his hyperkinesis. In my opinion, his story will be the most interesting and has the most potential since he has a troubled past, a problem with following orders though he served in the military and having this extraordinary ability which Angelina Jolie had in Wanted.
Dr. Lee Rosen is called in by the Department of Defense to investigate how this could happen in a sealed room with only two guards and no windows. Rosen calls in his team of Alphas to investigate why. Nina uses her powers of influence to talk herself into the room and Rachel uses her enhanced senses to figure out where the bullet came from. Bill is able to piece together a profile using all this information, leading them back to Cameron.
The alphas soon figure out Cameron was brainwashed by someone and use him as a decoy to draw that person out of hiding. Gary is able to trace who that person is by finding their unique cellphone signal. The alphas storm a hotel and believe they find the brainwasher who jumps off the roof of the hotel after a quick chase. Come to find out, the brainwasher brainwashed a bell boy to trade places with him. Thus the bell boy is the one who ends up killing himself.
The brainwasher is able to escape and manipulate Bill into trying to kill Rosen. The alphas figure this out with Nina heading off to help Rosen and Cameron running after the brainwasher. Meanwhile, the brainwasher has taken Rachel hostage while attempting to escape before being caught. Cameron is able to shoot and kill the brainwasher before he kills Rachel but not before he tells them “you’re on the wrong side of this.” Nina and Rosen are able to subdue Bill. The pilot ends with Rosen officially welcoming Cameron to the team.
I actually liked the pilot very much. Granted, it has all been done before, but it was still exciting to watch the 90-minute pilot. Ordinary people with extraordinary powers, an evil force out to get them. It is a classic plot and I am a sucker for it. I think this is going to be another show on my must watch list.