22 x 50-minute episodes

SF elements

alien sea monsters hybridising with humans


The Kraken Awakes meets Invasion of the Body Snatchers .

After a hurricane, many members of a township return somehow "changed". They are actually not the original townspeople, but "hybrids" built from their bodies by alien creatures in the sea. The town's sheriff, himself a hybrid from many years ago, attempts to keep control of the situation, but not everybody plays by his rules.

[Ranger, Dave, Larkin, Russell, Rose, Dr Mariel, Jesse, Sheriff Tom, Kira]

This starts off incredibly slowly, letting slip the plot details in tiny morsels. Today's more sophisticated audiences have probably guessed the revelations several episodes before they are made clear. However, by the final few episodes and the closing hurricane, the action hots up as the sheriff's careful plans unravel in all directions. The reactions of the people are quite reasonable: at first they don't believe what is happening (they don't realise they are characters in an SF TV series, after all), but as the evidence mounts, they come to understand that something weird is going on, and start to take action. We never do discover just why the sheriff and his wife the doctor are such atypical hybrids, working on the side of the humans, though.

There are several dramatic car accidents, which as ever all seem to be caused by the driver not looking where they are going for many seconds at a time. (Do not try this at home. Captain Scarlet is indestructible; you are not.) But the technology-base is plausible: everyone has cameras, computers, and especially mobile phones and radios to keep in touch, but the hurricane is there to make these a little erratic, whenever the plot requires.

Rather unsurprisingly, Invasion hasn't been picked up for a second season, so the mini-cliff hanger has to be interpreted as a final "twist" in the story, which nevertheless has a sufficient amount of closure not to be too irritating.

Rating: 4

[ unmissable | great stuff | worth watching | mind candy | waste of time | unfinishable ]

reviewed 28 May 2006