Alphas (PREVIEW)

Alphas features an interesting superhero formula, but may not have what it takes to last as a popular series.

On paper, Alphas isn't exactly a show that attempts to break any new ground. A group  of random people with rare mutations who are strong on their own, but much more powerful as a team. It's been done before, but not like this. Alphas introduces all these characters in the middle of one of their everyday cases. Dr. Lee Rosen (David Strathairn) is the ringleader and has brought together the electric current-reading Gary (Ryan Cartwright), the super strong Bill (Malik Yoba), sound sensitive Rachel (Azita Ghanizada) and incredibly persuasive Nina (Laura Mennell) to figure out a curious murder case that seems all but normal. 

SyFy made a wise choice picking up Alphas. On any other network, they would have overlooked the strange nature of the main characters' powers and more than likely given them everyday issues to make them seem just like us. Thankfully, SyFy doesn't think like most other networks. Highlighting the powers and the advantages of teamwork is what Alphas focuses heavily on. It's nice to see that none of the characters on Alphas have psychical deformations as powers or results of said powers. The Alphas seem normal at first glance, but underneath the looks, they are a supernatural team that no one can seem to stop. Alphas allows a breath of fresh air as each character uses their abilities for investigation reasoning, being more detectives than super heroes. Imagine if Heroes followed more of a Fringe formula. 

For a pilot episode, Alphas is pretty impressive. But it may not last. As a single episode, it's a fun hour and 5 minutes. Unfortunately, Alphas is a television series that will last at least a season long. Of course, the writers have a whole season of episodes to change things around and make things feel fresh, but the vibe given off of Alphas feels like a fantastic idea for a short mini-series, not a front runner-up for SyFy's best programming. 

Alphas features an interesting perspective on the superhero formula but may suffer for not having enough fresh material to keep audiences coming back for more episodes. Alphas airs Mondays at 10 pm on SyFy. 

Ryan Sterritt
Review by Ryan Sterritt
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