If Hollywood movies these days have lost their luster, things are quite the opposite on the small screen. TV is in somewhat of a golden age of offering engaging, epic stories with smart dialogue, plots and characters that audiences want to watch for years on end. TV is in it for the long term. The same can be said for a good book series. This week I will highlight four shows that I wish were a book series.
#1: Haven. The Syfy Channel’s Haven is my current favorite show. Loosely based on a Stephen King novel, The Colorado Kid, Haven is a procedural drama in which the main character, Audrey Parker (Emily Rose) strives to ride a New England town of its supernatural “troubles.” The plucky FBI agent is aided by local cop Nathan Wuornos (love that name) played by Lucas Bryant and slacker Duke Crocker (Eric Balfour), a smuggler who lives on a boat.
In season one, it wasn’t abundantly clear where Haven was going with all of their “troubled” townspeople. Now, with season four just wrapped up, the show has become somewhat of an epic mind game, a reminds me the most of LOST with a smaller cast. Haven has almost nothing to do with its source material, The Colorado Kid, but the premise of that crime story plagues me: Some mysteries have no answer, only theories that can’t be proven. I am somewhat apprehensive that the show will ultimately end on such a note, but the interim is exciting to watch nonetheless. The characters are engaging to watch and for the most part the show sticks to its strength of dealing with a unique “trouble” each episode. And the troubles are unique, with shades of The X Files, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and other shows involving paranormal problems or monsters. The townspeople’s otherworldly afflictions are often related to their inner psyche in some way, allowing for the show to delve into weightier subjects even if it’s only for forty minutes or so. The longterm arc of the show has so far presented many intriguing questions, many that also deal with similar issues of guilt, fate, faith, and how people deal with the fact that they aren’t perfect.
Why would Haven make a great book series? In addition to the plot, characters, and themes of the show, it’s set in a gorgeous seaside town (filmed in Nova Scotia, Canada) dying for literary description, and showcases fantasy elements that would be even more amazing in a reader’s imagination. In a book series, the characters’ inner thoughts could also be more specifically dwelled upon, as well as their pasts. Nathan and Duke, for example, had an interesting childhood growing up together as on and off friends. It would also be intriguing to visit the other years in which Haven was plagued by “troubles.”
Haven is due back sometime this year for 26 more episodes: http://www.blastr.com/2014-1-28/more-troubles-are-coming-syfy-orders-super-sized-new-season-haven