11 July 2016 | samlan989
Great Acting, Great Premise, Not So Great Writing
Miss 2059 is a great sci-fi drama trapped in a campy web series. The idea of a Hunger Games style death match in space is hardly original, but the series manages to keep the idea fresh with the central sisterly relationship that drives the story forward.
Anna Akana and Chantelle Barry are the standouts in the show.
Akana is able to balance a somewhat shallow character while still conveying a sense of heroism and compassion. The writing she is given easily leans her character toward a more superficial stereotypical depiction of a beauty queen. Akana's delivery of the dialogue and her mannerisms move the character away from a self- interested airhead to a strong and compassionate leader that the show intends her to be.
Barry shines as Tri, the series' villain. From her first moment on screen, Barry commands a real presence and instantly conveys how dangerous her character is. Nikki SooHoo is also a positive part of the show, but is bogged down by a very limited character arc of the "hardnose" sister.
The writing is the main issue with the story. The central focus of the series is supposed to be the tense relationship between Victoria (Akana) and Arden (SooHoo), but is stunted by lackluster dialogue.
There was a moment at the beginning of the first episode in which Arden an Victoria share a silent moment looking at each other, where both want to say something meaningful and loving to the other, but are cut off. The scene was fantastic and well thought out with minimal dialogue, and was carried completely by the facial expressions of Akana and SooHoo. In my opinion, the presentation of the sisters' relationship has only got downhill from there. As of this review, the show is only 4 episodes in out of the 12 in the first season, so we shall see if it improves.
The show also tries to mix in humor wherever it can, which is good, but is mishandled. A running joke in the show is the pronunciation of "Earth" by aliens, which was ripped right out of the script of "Lilo & Stitch".
Another issue with the series is its visual effects, which are lackluster. I understand that the show has a relatively low budget, but various uses of green screen are painfully obvious and could have been done better. The alien costumes in the show are well done, especially for the budget, but often limit the actors in costume. One particular alien in the first episode was barely able to move its mouth when speaking.
Overall, "Miss 2059" is an enjoyable ride with some key flaws. Despite these flaws, I would still recommend the show, as the central characters provide heartwarming and powerful performances.