Zoo Season 1 Review

TV:
Mitchel Broussard

Reviewed by:
Rating:
3.5
On June 25, 2015
Last modified:June 25, 2015

Summary:

With a solid hook, zippy pace and mounting menace, Zoo is far more economically assembled than a series of this making -- and with this kind of airport-ready source material -- should ever have allowed.

Zoo Season 1 Review

zoo-cbs

Unfortunately, the CBS of it all comes back into play every now and again, especially in the show’s dramatic animal attack sequences. While some of the more aggressive wildlife is impressively presented – mostly in quiet, still shots, like the alley dwelling cats in LA – any moment of chase or high action is edited choppily. The reasoning behind this is obvious, making the CGI animals appear less CGI, but even in quick-cuts and camera pans, the stunted, computerized movements of such preternaturally graceful creatures is a little hard to ignore.

Yet still, Zoo manages to instill fear. Its best moments are of POV shots of the animals, or even in a tall grass sequence taken straight from the second Jurassic Park flick, and by those standards the show succeeds in what it sets out to do: thrill and entertain. It helps that the basic premise is one creepily edging in on reality far more than the usual prevent-the-apocalypse sub-genre allows. The idea of animals – from lions and rhinos to parrots and pugs – suddenly rebelling on us is a doomsday scenario just weird and truthful enough to work.

What helps, probably most of all, is that Zoo is a CBS genre show that just blatantly works. No overacting or repetitive scripting (Under the Dome) or convoluted plot tangents (Extant), simply an old-fashioned idea presented in just new enough a way as to feel fun again. It’s got cliches out the wazoo and every-so-often succumbs to some cheese – episode 1’s cliffhanger is of particular suspect – but it’s a solid, mindless summer deviation with huge potential to be far more, well, biting, as the season moves along.