Episode Report Cardadmin: B- | Grade It Now!
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The story so far: Al Gough and Miles Millar of Smallville fame pitched a show called Mercy Reef that was to be the story of Aquaman, the superhero with the orange shirt and green pants who talks to the fishes. Are you wet with excitement yet? The test run of the concept was an episode of Smallville in which the fishy fellow appears. Said Aquaman was a bit different than the one we see in the eventual pilot: he was so beefy you could skewer bits of his head and make gigantic shish kebabs. Then came the news that the newly formed CW would incorporate the withered, emaciated bodies of The WB and the UPN netlets to make one slightly larger nerd to get sand kicked in its face at the broadcast beach. Surprisingly, Mercy Reef was not picked up for the schedule (insert 7th Heaven slam here) and months later, the finished pilot was released to iTunes as "Aquaman," where it now sits perched very highly on the download service's top programs. Who knows what'll happen. Aquaman has been much in the news after a season-long storyline on Entourage (and one very befuddled newscast) and it wouldn't surprise me if this show came back in some form or fashion. Now, on to the pilot! Water. Lots of it. I'm going to say right off the bat that I have a very hard time recapping something I can only watch in iTunes because I keep wanting to skip to the next random track and listen to some Gnarls Barkley or Arcade Fire. And despite my having a pretty fast computer, the controls to move around in the video are beyond sluggish. Fix that shit, Apple! Rant over. Where were we? Oh yeah, water. "My son's story begins in the ocean," says a woman's voice. Not the ocean of your womb, right? Please don't tell us about your salty bodily seas. We're underwater looking up toward the blobby sun as tiny fish scurry around. The woman says that the sea is full of secrets. And Teamster parts. She says that some of the secrets are beautiful and some are dangerous, like that hammerhead shark that just passed by. A giant man-o-war swims by as she tells us that the secrets have baffled man for centuries. Shit, I'm baffled right now. How does that thing eat? Who is it wearing? Can it read my mind, man? She tells us none are more baffling than the Bermuda Triangle. Shot of a sunken ship. Close-ups of some seahorses. She says in order to understand the Triangle, you must understand her son. Her son is a triangle? A shot of a wave crashing. She says that although her son lives among us (like a fungus), he was born in the darkest reaches of the sea. Hey, I got a joke. Where do Atlanteans shop for clothes? At Mer-vyn's! Ah, but I kid the fish people. Voiceover Mom says that she'd hoped to give her son a good life and teach him to become a good man. We cut right to Nirvana's Nevermind album cover, minus the dingus. A baby floats happily in the water as she says she was taken from him. The baby moons us.