Although I can’t say that this show will do well as a series, the pilot is worth your time. Second Chance is a fairly grounded science fiction redemption drama that mostly works. It is available to watch now on Hulu and Youtube. I’ve embedded the whole pilot episode below.
The mid-season cancellations have happened, and their replacements are almost here. There are a number of pilots and new seasons premiering this month to get excited about, with DC’s Legends of Tomorrow and a new season of Galavant being chief among them. However, Fox has picked up a series that they’re pretty confident in, called Second Chance. It involves an older guy getting…wait for it…a SECOND CHANCE at life. Pretty clever right? Here’s the actual press release for it, as provided by Fox:
From executive producer/writer Rand Ravich (“Life,” “Crisis”) and Emmy Award-winning executive producer Howard Gordon (“Homeland,” “24”) comes SECOND CHANCE, a thrilling new action-drama about a man brought back to life by two scientists playing god in the quest to save one of their own lives. Seventy-five-year-old JIMMY PRITCHARD (guest star Philip Baker Hall, “Modern Family,” “Magnolia”) is a shell of his former self. A drinker, a womanizer and a father who always put work before family, Pritchard was forced to resign as L.A. County Sheriff for corrupt conduct more than a decade ago. Now, some 15 unkind years later, he is killed when he stumbles upon a robbery at the home of FBI Agent DUVAL PRITCHARD (Tim DeKay, “White Collar”), one of his two children. But death is surprisingly short for Jimmy, who is brought back to life by billionaire tech-genius twins MARY GOODWIN (Dilshad Vadsaria, “Revenge”) and her brother, OTTO (Adhir Kalyan, “Rules of Engagement”), founders of the social networking empire, Lookinglass. Resurrected as a younger, better version of himself, with physical abilities of which he never dreamed, a re-animated Pritchard (Rob Kazinsky, “True Blood”) is given a second chance at life. What will he do with it? Will he try to repair the damage he did to his family? Will he embrace a new sense of purpose or fall prey to old temptations?
The show itself would be characterized as a character-driven sci-fi drama. Which surprised me. Science fiction television isn’t known for really strong characters, yet this one really delivers. The main characters (outside of Adhir Kalyan’s) are very rich.
The premise is an intriguing one. Who wouldn’t want a second chance at life? It’s innate human nature to want to erase or fix our past. The main character gets to do that, mostly. Although he doesn’t time travel, he does get to right some wrongs and appreciate his life from a new perspective. Redemption is a strong theme that if done well can really resonate with audiences and I think Second Chance does a pretty decent job at that.
A pitfall of the show is the weird side catalyst of Mary and Otto Goodwin (Dilshad Vadsaria and Adhir Kalyan). I won’t spoil it, but I’m just not sure that this ‘foundation’ part of the story really works. Their dialogue/exposition is way too on the nose for my tastes.