Friday (TV) Review: The Last Ship

There will probably be a few TV, movie, or other reviews for a bit on Fridays. I am reading non-fiction right now, and that is always a bit slower reading for me. But, hey, I have opinions on stuff other than books, so it’s all good, right?

The Last Ship is one of TNT’s original programming shows. It is a summer replacement, which means it airs while many of the regular season shows are on hiatus. I like these summer shows- when they are good. They break up that long dead time until regular programming starts up again.

The Last Ship just ended its second season, and, yes, I waited to do the review on purpose. I wanted to see how they handled a few things, because there were a couple different scenarios they could have used, and some of them would have not been great choices. I have to say, I do like the show. There are a lot of mixed reviews out there. Many of them boil down to “It’s not perfect.” Well, guess what? It’s a TV show, and there are darned few of them that ever are perfect.

If you’re not familiar with it, The Last Ship is (loosely) based on the book of the same title by William Brinkley. The show runs off in different directions pretty quickly.

The premise here is that a global pandemic has occurred and about 80% of the global polulation died from the virus. The USS Nathan James, a guided missile destroyer, was on a mission to the Artic and was not infected. Onboard is a paramicrobiologist tasked with finding a cure for the virus.

The first season was fairly straightforward, with the focus on developing a cure for the deadly virus without getting anyone else infected. The cure is discoverd, and the crew of the James begins the task of getting it distributed to those still alive. There are obstacles and complications, of course. In the second season, the crew comes up against a group of people immune to the virus who are led by a fanatical terrorist bent on starting a “super race” of only immunes and blocking the distribution of the cure. The third season will focus on rebuilding the nation.

There is a good balance of action and storyline, the cast is, for the most part, very good, and it’s entertaining. Are there things that, if I sat down and really thought about it, I’d question? Sure. But, overall, things are handled well enough that it isn’t difficult to suspend disbelief and enjoy. The science is believable (mostly), and they get the military stuff right (mostly). And the “mostly” stuff? Well, this is TV and it is entertainment, and I can forgive. There are some tropes, particularly with several of the characters, but they also have their own personalities to balance that. And, every so often, stuff blows up. Can’t argue with that, now, can we?

If you are a fan of apocalyptic, dystopic military sci-fi, of military action-adventure, or just a decent action-adventure that doesn’t just string the explosions and fights together without much to back it up, you might look at this one. I’m sure the first two seasons are out there somewhere to watch. Season 3 will be back in the summer of 2016.

Oh, and they get extra props from me because Eric Dane is not at all hard on the eyes.