he "end of the world" is "getting the reality-show treatment," said Brian Stelter in The New York Times. The Discovery Channel's new series The Colony, which debuted Tuesday night, isolates 10 strangers in an abandoned warehouse "for two months with minimal food and water" and assigns them the task of rebuilding society, as an imaginary viral outbreak has destroyed most of the world. The Colony is "essentially a social experiment, albeit one set up by cameramen instead of scientists," and it's quite "entertaining." (watch the trailer for The Colony)
A show like this could have never "been predicted in the early days" of reality television, said Joanne Ostrow in The Denver Post, "when catching fish on an island and dating a housemate represented the height of unscripted TV." The Colony hinges "on very real modern anxieties," and "you can't say prime time doesn't change with the times—terror is the new car chase."
But there's nothing really terrifying about this show, said Mark A. Perigard in the Boston Herald, and it's not very realistic. "The Colony is controlled so tightly, it might as well be scripted. The parts these survivors need for a water filtration system turn out to be readily available, scattered about the factory. A credits-closing disclaimer reveals that experts also are on hand to ensure no one gets hurt."
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Who are the real gay marriage bigots?
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Why is American internet so slow?
- Religious liberty should be a liberal value, too
- Don't worry: World War III will almost certainly never happen
- Watch The Daily Show mock Fox News' confused man-crush on Vladimir Putin
- What the collapse of the Ming Dynasty can tell us about American decline
- 22 TV shows to watch in 2014
- The new bride who had a horrifying allergic reaction to her husband's sperm
5 surprising facts about left-handed people
Subscribe to the Week