Minority Report: “Fiddler’s Neck” could have been a nice change of pace, but ends up being a little dull

The more I watch Minority Report, the more I come to terms with all the reasons why this show is almost certainly going to be cancelled after just one ten-episode arc. It makes me a little sad because I think the show, in the beginning, had a lot of potential, but it’s basically all been squandered with bad writing and ill-conceived plots.

“Fiddler’s Neck” takes us to the weird Luddite island where Dash and Arthur grew up after the end of precrime and where Agatha still lives. It’s a nice change of pace, although the episode more or less maintains the case-of-the-week format that has previously been established. This time, though, we get lots of Agatha-related flashbacks, as this week’s case involves the daughter of her old flame. We also finally get to see Agatha and Vega in the same room, which I have mixed feelings about.

Fiddler’s Neck, apparently, used to be a peninsula and is only an island as a result of global warming. We even get a shot of the ruins of an amusement park to show how bad the global warming and coastal flooding is. Fiddler’s Neck is also, apparently, a refuge for libertarians, anti-vaxxers, and natural-living folks of all types. It’s basically so backward the US government gave up on trying to control it, and so it’s a place governed by its own sort of local militia—which turns out to just be a group of crooked rednecks with shotguns. It makes sense, I guess, why the precogs would end up there, but it also makes a lot of sense that Dash and Arthur would get the hell out as soon as they could.

Most of this episode was in service to giving us a better idea of who Agatha is, which I was excited about since she’s been one of the more consistently interesting characters on the show. It turns out, however, that she’s actually kind of boring. Certainly, her doomed love story with the guy who hired her to work on his farm when she first came to the island is dull and cliché, anyway.

I had high hopes for Agatha and Vega together, but even that didn’t really pay off. Agatha was coldly aloof, and Vega spent most of the episode just looking like she smelled something nasty. There were no sparks, no big arguments, and no major meeting of the minds between these two, and I felt like the end of the episode signified nothing more than a return to the status quo. With only ten episodes to work with, I hate to see any episode do as little as this one did to either provide interesting exposition or further the plot.

I’m so sad about this show. It’s one that I think started off with a lot of things going for it, but week after week it continues to fail to deliver on a premise that ought to be really interesting. Instead, Minority Report has turned out to be just a second-rate cop show with some flashy sci-fi window dressing. It’s likable lead actors do the best they can with poor scripts and boring stories, but their charm really only goes so far.

Miscellaneous thoughts:

  • This was an excellent episode for world building, which would have been awesome if it was the second or third episode of the series. This late in the game, it feels superfluous, especially since the most interesting parts don’t really contribute much to the main story.
  • The B-plot, which had Akeela discovering an investigation of Blake and then going to Wally for help, was just awful. Disconnected from the main plot, poorly written, badly executed, and Wally was really unnecessarily nasty to Akeela.
  • I laughed out loud when Vega was trying to show how big she thinks an ear of corn is.

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