Review of a TV Show Based on a Book

Right now all YA book nerds are going crazy over the release of the Delirium TV show pilot. Sadly, it isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. I can’t speak to the accuracy of the events or character-s I haven’t read the book and this pilot does not make it any more likely that I will add it to me to-read list- but as an avid reader and a viewer of other YA books turned TV show (The Vampire Diaries and Pretty Little Liars) I can highlight some of the places this pilot went wrong.

  • Pacing: Sure you can’t do much in 43 minutes and sure you want to prove this a worthy TV show, but the events occurred way too fast. One minute Lena was an advocate for the cure, then she was questioning it, and finally she was against it. All in the matter of minutes. Admittedly, if I was presented concrete evidence that one of my beliefs was incorrect, I would question the belief, but I’d also research the topic myself before getting rid of or altering the belief. It’s not a process that could occur in a day or a few days, which is what the pilot made it seem like. The scenes cut in and out so quick that it seemed like the whole book happened within a week, which I doubt actually happened. You don’t make a show pilot by putting all the answers and secrets in the first episode; this show was doomed too fail.
  • Characters: Again, I’ll announce that I have not read the book so the characters may have been fully developed in the story, but they weren’t in the episode. People popped in and out of scenes super fast without mentioning/showing who they were, their importance, or which team they’re on (good guys, bad guys, bad guys masking as good guys). Besides character development, some scenes (most actually) could have used more substance by having dialogue that consisted of more than 3-5 lines (I didn’t actually count so some might be longer, but these scenes were really short and all over the place). Mainly, the episode was confusing and disorienting.
  • Romance: I could easily discuss the romance in the episode, but I’ve read a lot of comments of people complaining about how quickly Lena and Alex fell in love (as if that’s the only issue with the show) so I won’t talk about it. Discussing the romance here would be like squashing a bug that’s already dead; overkill.

Overall, the pilot was a big disappoint, which means that those of you who have actually read the book must be infuriated. I know a lot of people are hoping that WIGS and Hulu decide to continue the series, but I don’t think they should. The show’s already been ruined so the best thing to do would be to find another YA book that can be adapted into a TV show and start from scratch, that way producers and directors can be more meticulous about what’s added, subtracted, or altered and won’t be haunted by the past of a horrible pilot.

If you want to watch the Delirium pilot for yourself, click here.

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