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Monday, June 24, 2024

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DEBRIS episode 13 “Celestial Body” review – Emotional Convergence

(editor’s note, this was written before the news that the show was cancelled was announced)

I have to give DEBRIS credit, it really went for it in the season (hopefully just season and not series) finale. Awesome surprise guest star that forms a link to another classic sci-fi show that I’ve referenced in my reviews?  Check. Multiple debris special effects? Check. Surprise reveals? Check. Answers to some of the show’s biggest questions? Check, but emphasis on some.

More than any prior episode, the finale relies on the foundation of the prior episodes. There is a debris of the week, but it quickly is tied to the ongoing story. As is the case in the best DEBRIS episodes, the debris of the week has a really creepy effect that relies on the acting of the victims as much as special effects. With that said, this episode has more than the usual effects, all of which are both interesting and creepy. The fact that we know next to nothing about them adds to their intrigue … and my hope for a second season.

So, aside from the special effects, what is awesome about the finale? It addresses many of the weaker areas of the show. While I’ve loved the development of the Finola and Bryan relationship, Influx has been under utilized as a foe. Sure, they’ve popped up every now and then, but they haven’t been integral to the show. This episode fixes that. After serving as the central mystery for the first few episodes, Finola’s dad has been played more like a punchline (see tin foil cape). This episode fixes that. Bryan’s past has been teased in multiple episodes. This episode takes a step forward in that area, but the step leads to many more questions … which is why we need a second season. The one plot thread that didn’t land for me was Maddox. We get a resolution of sorts for his story, but I never really felt invested in him as a character, despite a likeable acting performance by Norbert Leo Butz.

Photo by: James Dittiger/NBC

If you haven’t seen an episode of DEBRIS, please don’t start with the season finale. It won’t make sense unless you start at the beginning. Also, as a heads up, the finale leaves a ton of questions open. Some shows hedge their bets on renewal and make a finale that can serve as a series wrap up in case of cancellation. DEBRIS swings for the fences and avoids that approach. If you demand a tidy ending, this one might leave you disappointed.

DEBRIS is a show packed with big ideas and ongoing storylines. This makes it impossible to answer all the questions it poses. Hopefully, DEBRIS gets a second season and can start answering some of these mysteries (Or we could end up like LOST and never explain what the deal is with the polar bears). This episode answers enough questions that I have confidence the writers won’t leave us hanging if given the opportunity.

NBC, you burnt me with SURFACE (one of my favorite shows to be cancelled after one season). Renew DEBRIS and we’ll call it even.

Had you been watching the show? Are you a fan? Feel free to chat with me on Twitter or leave a comment below!

Darren Shulman
Darren Shulman
Darren is a professional lawyer and amateur movie/comic/TV reviewer who is lucky enough to have found a wife who is into the same geeky things he is. Darren has been making the trip from Ohio to San Diego Comic-Con since 2009. Other interests include, in no particular order: monkeys, LEGO, dinosaurs, and playing basketball poorly.

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