The Son (Pilot)

Starring: Pierce Brosnan, Henry Garrett, Jess Weixler, Jacob Lofland

Plot: I’m really not sure, which is part of the problem. There’s a family in Texas, The McCullough’s, who have a patriarch (Brosnan) and they do business. There are tensions between them and the Mexicans, and also the Indians. There’s a side story in the pilot about two boys being drug through the country by some Indians. There’s also a mysterious hanging.

What Works: I thought Jacob Lofland was good. I really thought he was Tye Sheridan, if I’m being honest, but he just looks a lot like Tye, which is probably why they were in Mud together. The set design and production values are good. Everything looks good here. The direction is pretty standard for a TV drama. In the few scenes he mumbles through, I kinda enjoyed the presence of Brosnan, even if I wasn’t sure what purpose he was serving.

What Doesn’t Work: We need to talk about pilots. Pilots for a show are supposed to set up the world, reveal the stakes at play, introduce characters, and make a compelling case for your return. I didn’t feel like The Son did any of that. It’s one of the slowest moving pilots I’ve ever seen, and it seemingly goes nowhere. They’re basically banking on the fact that you came for Brosnan, and you’ll be coming back for Brosnan. In a world of “too much TV” that’s no longer true. We have more options than ever before, and the Pilot has never been more important. You can’t just coast through your pilot hoping people will stick with you for different reasons. They won’t. There’s too much else out there. Maybe this is a good show that just takes time to develop, but I’ll never know. I believe in the need for a good pilot and The Son just doesn’t deliver. It’s too slow, and I don’t know what it wants to be, or where it will end up. There was a slight uptick in tension right at the end, but I still don’t feel connected to these characters or their story.

Final Word: I think AMC knows they made a stinker here, and that’s why it was banished to Saturday nights. Who launches an original drama on Saturdays anymore? No one. AMC is just burning this series off. It’s just not worth your time. AMC has better shows, and there are better shows on other networks. This was just a huge disappointment for me.

Final Grade: D+

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