Question: I agree with Laurie, a reader from your previous column who chooses Surface over Threshold or Invasion. I am a big "sci-fan" fan (Star Trek, Farscape, The Prisoner, Lost, Dr. Who) and this show is far more interesting than the other two new entries this season. Threshold is OK, but its "monster of the week" story structure is can get old very fast. Invasion is dreadfully dull. I don't mind slow, but it's just not compelling in any way, and watching it quickly became a chore. Surface is fast and fun. You actually get to see the monster — a nice change of pace. It's hampered by NBC's family-first production values (think SeaQuest), but watching these four story lines unfold is much more interesting than, say, seeing a married couple bicker over who's watching the children tonight (i.e., the first two episodes of Invasion). It's supposed to be fun and it is.
Answer: One man's fun is another's nap time, but never let it be said that I don't allow opposing points of view in this column. And while you may think I'm not open-minded about Surface (I struggled to stay conscious through this week's episode, and during the Nimrod-goes-to-Piggly-Wiggly interlude, I felt like I'd stumbled into a bad Disney movie), I honestly think you're not giving Threshold enough credit. Tracking down the infected is the plot engine, but the mechanisms by which the aliens are trying to spread the mutation is chilling to me. And the cast, top to bottom, makes Surface look like amateur night in fantasy land. Surface's writing... now that's scary.