Image B+ Sound A- Extras A
"Valley of the Shadow," "Descent," "Ascent," "The Outsider," "Precipitate," "Scars," "Misbegotten," "Cabin Pressure," "The Man Who Never Was," "Dead Men Tell Tales," "Playing God," "Zion," "The Storm," "Plague," "Deja Voodoo," "The Hunt," "The Mountain," "The Combination," "Visions"
by Walter Chaw I'll say this at the get-go, that "The Dead Zone", the television series, will never completely escape the shadow of David Cronenberg's enduring feature film adaptation of the Stephen King source novel, and that Anthony Michael Hall is a pale substitute for Christopher Walken, particularly for Walken at what might be the actor's finest hour. Luckily, Hall has an easier time shedding his John Hughes days, having doubled in size (he's still trim, just not Farmer Ted), donned a black leather pea coat (mine found the Salvation Army bin about five episodes in--I never, ever want to look like Hall in Vancouver playing Johnny Smith), and acquired a Vulcan arch to his brow that all but screams "serious actor." Yet there's something since "The X-Files" that rubs me wrong about most American shows shot north of the 49th Parallel: the genericness of the setting doesn't scream Anytown, USA so much as "Canada: it's cheaper and blander up here." Lacking atmosphere and vibrancy, "The Dead Zone" is an extrapolation, especially in Season Two, of the further adventures of John Smith, a reluctant clairvoyant who can touch any person or thing (including air, which raises its own set of problems/questions) and summon up visions of past or future that inevitably put Johnny in the position of a powder-dipped saint in a Mexican parade.