Haven Review by John Keegan

Haven 5.08: Exposure

Haven 5.08: Exposure

Written By:
Nick Parker
Directed By:
Rob Lieberman


The fifth season continues to have pacing issues, so much so that it’s been hard to generate much interest in the series, at least compared to the rest of the fall schedule.  I’m apparently not alone in this sentiment; the ratings have dropped so much that Haven was unceremoniously moved from its Thursday night timeslot to Fridays at 7PM Eastern.  This is far from a typical prime time slot for Syfy programming, and it suggests a lack of confidence in the future of the series.



 

For that reason alone, everyone involved had best be planning for the fifth season to be the end of the line.  Hopefully that will also mean that the second half of the season, set to air in 2015, will be much more accelerated.  The writers continue to stretch out the material for a single episode (at least in terms of Troubles) over two episodes, and so the sense of progress is stunted.

 

This episode is a bit more active, especially now that Audrey and Mara are separated.  Duke and Mara have some solid scenes in this installment, showing sides of Mara that we haven’t seen yet.  Mara’s continued survival doesn’t make a great deal of sense, so it’s nice of her to point that out herself.  Why Duke might be letting her live, in Dwight’s rather noticeable absence, is a very good question.


 

Audrey gets to be a bit more active in this episode, driving her end of the mission to save Nathan.  With her immunity to the Troubles now gone, it changes the dynamic of her presence in Haven.  It also alters the status quo a bit more than perhaps many would prefer, but it also suggests that the cycle behind the Troubles has truly been broken.  Considering that the series needs to find resolution, going back to the old setup wouldn’t be a logical alternative.



 

The whole situation with Dave and his massive leg wound is a weak point of the episode.  Clearly this sojourn into North Carolina was meant to provide a basis for some exposition and generate a reason for the CDC to visit Haven.  But that wound is so substantial that it seems highly unlikely that Dave would be walking around on it.  That whole side trip has involved some sloppy plotting, since it’s unclear just what the audience is supposed to be taking away from all of this information!

 

Also questionable was the return of Seth Byrne, one of last season’s paranormal investigators.  While it made sense within the context of the Trouble, Seth isn’t nearly as amusing a character as the producers seem to think he is.  If they are looking for quirky, the role seems woefully miscast.  But that’s the problem with this season of Haven; from the start, it has felt like something vital is missing, and the results have been strangely off-kilter.


Our Grade:
B-
The Good:
  • Audrey is back, and it’s about time
  • The Duke/Mara interactions
The Bad:
  • The future of the series is looking bleak
  • Was anyone really looking forward to the return of the Darkside Seekers?

John Keegan aka "criticalmyth", is one of the hosts of the "Critical Myth" podcast heard here on VOG Network's radio feed Monday, Wednesday & Friday. You can follow him on twitter at @criticalmyth

Haven by - 11/4/2014 6:10 AM160 views

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