See takes place in a post-apocalypse future where the human race has been blind for many generations. The birth of twins with sight begins a power struggle for the fate of mankind. The series is part of the Apple TV+ initial launch of original programming. See stars Aquaman’s Jason Momoa, was created/written by Hollywood veteran Steven Knight (Eastern Promises), and produced/directed by Francis Lawrence (The Hunger Games Franchise). The heavyweight talent behind and in front of the camera did not result in must see television. See has a scattershot narrative with uninteresting lead characters. The blindness gimmick also falls apart quickly. Even with willing suspension of disbelief, it just doesn’t make sense or seem possible.
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Journalists were given the first three episodes to review. See opens with Alkenny villagers preparing for an attack on their mountain home. Their leader, Baba Voss (Jason Momoa), gathers warriors while his wife, Maghra (Hera Hilmar), gives birth to twins. Paris (Alfre Woodard), the midwife and village spiritualist, asks Maghra who is the babies’ real father. We learn that Maghra arrived at the village already pregnant. She was taken in by Baba Voss, who could not produce children. Paris is stunned by the revelation of the children’s true lineage.
Baba Voss and the villagers battle the forces of Queen Kane (Sylvia Hoeks). She has dispatched an army of “Witchfinders” led by General Tamacti Jun (Christian Camargo). Queen Kane is obsessed with finding a dangerous heretic who threatens her iron rule. An Alkenny traitor (Mojean Aria) with a grudge against Baba Voss divulged the village location. Just when Baba Voss believes them to be doomed, Paris informs him of a secret passage off the mountain. The heretic had given her detailed plans for their escape. As Baba Voss takes the Alkenny to a secret refuge, he and Maghra discover why the children are so important.
Blindness is the central theme to See. The characters handle the lack of sight by relying on other amplified senses. There are “scentiers” who can smell the faintest odors. Several characters have keen hearing and can detect noise over great distances. Everyone communicates by tying knots into ropes, a Braille-like system. They also use ropes to connect homes and pathways as guides. The fight scenes are bloody and gruesome. Warriors lash out with whips to detect enemies. Then strike with stabbing tools like horns; or slice throats with sharpened knives and bones.
I had major issues with how the show handles blindness. Characters have shaved heads, body parts, and wear pristine clean clothes. We are told that the metal they use were found or passed along over time. How were they able to string up the overhead ropes that guide them? Or build the sturdy shelters they live in without being able to accurately cut and measure wood? Queen Kane’s people live in a dam that supplies electricity. How can blind people safely manipulate current or operate turbines? None of it is plausible. See wants you to accept the blindness, but it’s difficult when logic continually gnaws at the premise.
See’s lead characters are mostly dull. Queen Kane is memorable, but for a gratuitous reason. The Sylvia Hoek’s villainess masturbates when she prays, or has a hapless servant perform oral sex. The pleasuring scenes feel bizarre and unnecessarily lewd. Jason Momoa’s Baba Voss is a mighty warrior that protects the children and his wife at all costs. It’s never explained, at least in the first three episodes, why he is so enamored with Hera Hilmar’s Maghra. Also, the primitive forest settings and native character reminds me of Momoa’s previous television series, Frontier. The shows are completely different; but the look of the protagonist, clad in fur and leather, is similar.
See goes through a major time jump during the first three episodes. It is not handled well. The twins go from infants to teenagers in a blink. The speed of this transformation leaves many questions unanswered. It’s another flaw that I could not get past. See may address these issues over the full ten episode season, but struggles mightily in the initial story arc. See is a production of Chernin Entertainment and Endeavor Content. It will be available to stream November 1st on Apple TV+.
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