First Impressions

Last Resort / 666 Park Avenue

Aired on: ABC

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


            The 2012 fall television season is promising to be rather productive with quite a few new shows to be checked out.  But are they any good?  This week, I decided to check out a couple of dramas - Last Resort, a military drama, and 666 Park Avenue, a hauntingly demonic drama.  Last Resort debuted on Thursday, September 27 at 8:00PM EST.  666 Park Avenue debuted on Sunday, September 30 at 10:00PM EST.  Both shows are part of the ABC Network fall schedule.

            In Last Resort, Marcus Chaplin (Andre Braugher), the respected captain of the USS Ohio ballistic missile submarine, would never consider refusing an order from the top brass of the United States military…until now. Shortly after picking up a Navy SEAL team from a top secret mission, Captain Chaplin receives an encoded order, via an unsecure channel, to fire nuclear missiles at Pakistan.  Even the Executive Officer (Scott Speedman) finds the way the message was sent to be suspicious. When Captain Chaplin requests confirmation of the orders, the submarine is fired upon by another United States naval vessel.

            At first believed dead thanks to new technology installed on the USS Ohio that allows them to hide their ship signature, the crew of the vessel, which includes Rear Admiral Arthur Sheppard’s (Bruce Davison) daughter, Lt. Grace Sheppard (Daisy Betts), head to the island of Sainte Marina. There, they seek refuge at a NATO communications base to regroup and contact their loved ones.

            The crew soon learns that Pakistan is being blamed for sinking the USS Ohio and that their family members are being attended to by various military personnel. Considered to have gone rogue, the crew members of the USS Ohio must now battle the United States military, a local crime boss (Sahr Ngaujh) and the members of their own crew until they can prove their innocence and return home.

            Based on a novel by Gabriella Pierce, 666 Park Avenue follows Jane Van Veen (Rachael Taylor) and Henry Martin (Dave Annable), an unwed couple who have come to New York to make their mark on the world.  Henry has found work in the mayor's office, but Jane has had trouble finding a career in her chosen profession of architecture.  The two head to The Drake, a luxury apartment building on the Upper East Side, hoping to land the job of building manager.  At first, it seems that Gavin Doran (Terry O'Quinn), is reluctant to hire the couple, but Jane quickly wins him over with her knowledge of the architecture of some of the older buildings in New York City.

            The couple are immediately overwhelmed by the opulence of their new digs and Jane is taken aback by the eerie acceptance by the Dorans.  She begins to feel uncomfortable around Gavin and Olivia (Vanessa Williams), but loves her new job, especially when she uncovers a huge hidden mosaic on the floor of the building's basement.  But the mosaic isn't all Jane comes across and when the strange things she uncovers begin to cause her to have bad dreams, Jane begins to wonder of she and Henry have made the right decision by taking on this job.

            Last Resort appeals to fans of government conspiracies.  There is a definite undercurrent of espionage and intrigue here.  You never really know who you can trust and you will always find yourself wondering just who is behind all of this.  There is just enough action and intrigue to give the viewers' adrenaline a boost and enough mystery around the characters to make you keep coming back to learn more.  As for 666 Park Avenue, this is a horror lover's dream.  There aren't a lot of good horror television series out there these days and this one fits the bill, featuring ghosts, demons, possessions, you name it.  There is a whole lot of mystery for Jane to yet uncover about The Drake, its owners and its residents and I have the feeling that the show will be quite a fun adventure into the demonic. 

            So, as it would seem, ABC has a couple more successful dramas to add to its substantial list.  I, for one, can't wait to see more.


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