“Father, I’m sorry, I failed you, I didn’t know how to win. Maybe I should die.
I’ll not suffer if I don’t survive. Thank you for creating me”
What if a machine says these words to its maker? Can he actually be its father? “Persons of Interest” shows this unusual relationship between a machine and its manufacturer. If you are a lover of science fiction and thriller, you can binge watch this rich and comic-book-like world of heroes, anti-heroes with highly-trained machines and their pros and cons.
“Persons of Interest” is a CBS Sci-fi drama that has been premiered in 2011 for 5 seasons with gritty storytelling by Jonathan Nolan and J.J. Abrams and a gripping score by GoT-fame Raman Djawedi. Once you begin to watch it, you’ll go deeper into the world of Artificial Intelligence. It’s dark, cynical and can keep the viewers on their toes. The series provides a rare sense of optimistic idea for silent heroes who want to help and save people privately.
Highlights: Persons of Interest talks about an idea to monitor our digital footprint constantly by an AI. It might be a distant dream in 2011 when the show began, however, with Edward Snowden leaking the classified documents, this story started to feel like hitting close to home. The term ‘panopticon’ is the core system where many individuals are observed simultaneously and they don’t have any clue about it.
The story revolves around a tough CIA agent Reese who left service after 9/11 when he found his government lying to him. Reese is hired by a billionaire, Finch who wants people to be saved before any crime. Does Finch have any superpower by which he gets to know about such potential crimes? No, he has access to a panopticon.
Why It’s A Must Watch:
This series has multiple layers and effectively touches different elements from police and administration, corruption, mob violence, mass surveillance, wall street, spy-craft to deep thought about the future of human civilization.
- Brilliant Character Development– Season 1 and 2 heavily concentrate on character development. The writers take care of crafting consistent and beautifully portrayed characters as their emotional and ethical capabilities are revealed over time.
- Carefully Written and Thought Provoking– Season 1 episode “No Good Deed” has an uncanny resemblance to the Snowden leaks and proves that the writers are pretty insightful. Dialogues like “when you work with the government, access isn’t a problem” are universal truths with respect to the present world.
- Fun To Watch– The show started with a procedural format with each episode as a stand-alone. A quasi-dystopian thriller with battles between opposing AI gods is fun to watch. The Samaritan, a purely calculative ASI ( Artificial Super Intelligence) is ready to sacrifice people for a greater good of the society and thinks humanity is of no good. On the other hand, the Machine has high regard for human emotions and only reacts to human evils. These two battle and the Season 5 culminates with the triumph of the Machine.
- No Good Or Bad Person, only Good or Bad Decisions – The characters are grey with huge conflicts on their own. It’s quite daunting to categorize a character on the basis of good or bad. Even Greer who’s considered as the anti-hero or evil believes that the greater good and efficiency comes with the Samaritan’s actions.
Some Glitches: No series is flawless and this is true for Persons of Interest as well. Some stand-alone episodes could have been more compact. Machine’s true unshackled power should have been shown against the Samaritan. And like almost every American drama, this also has deaths of many vital characters.
Cast: Jim Caviezel has played agent John Reese and Michael Emerson has portrayed Harold Finch, the mysterious billionaire, with utmost conviction. Besides, an outstanding supporting cast with Taraji P. Henson as idealist detective Carter, Amy Acker as flirtatious and morally bankrupt hacker Root, Sarah Shahi as ex-doctor, ex-marine and government assassin Zameen Shaw, are dynamic.
Not many people know about this gem that has a smart and witty real theme. Persons of Interest is the Shawshank Redemption of TV and you can catch the series on Netflix now!
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