ORBzine - Hunters TV Review


Season 1

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 1] The Beginning & The End
Shown 11/Apr/16

A woman is kidnapped by a creepy burglar who is also a Disk Jockey. Her husband is FBI Agent Flynn Carroll (Nathan Phillips), a cliched PTSD victim with a dead partner. His home life is terrible, since he is lumbered with the unhappy teenage daughter of his deceased cow-orker. Naturally he spends all his time hunting for his missing spouse.

Our hero stumbles into an investigation run by another Federal Agency, the ETU (Extro Terrorism Unit). They are hunting the terrorist organisation that kidnapped the wife. The terrorists are called The Hunters, a generic name that evokes the image of a cut-price Predator type species. They are non-human, possibly alien in origin. Their weapons and other technological items are very advanced, and the ETU have adapted their own weapons to a similar level.

This is based on the book Alien Hunter by Whitley Streiber - famous for claiming in the book Communion that he himself had been abducted by aliens. Relatively nice aliens, it has to be said, especially compared to these ones.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 2] Messages
Shown 18/Apr/16

Agent Flynn Carroll (Nathan Phillips) discovers a new suspect in his wife's disappearance. Unfortunately the alien, Lionel McCarthy (Julian McMahon - Fantastic Four ), is hunting him too. Also, there is now some doubt about Carroll's wife. Since it is impossible to spot an alien unless they want you to, it is possible she could actually be one of the Hunters.

The ETU knows that the aliens are communicating by subliminal messages on music tapes. They are also blowing up local music stores, as a way of house-cleaning. Can the cops prevent the next bombing?

The concept behind this show is quite cliched. It is a police procedural involving aliens that look like humans. However, what sets this show apart is the visual style of it. It appears to have superior production values, probably because it is filmed in Australia instead of Canada.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 3] Maid of Orleans
Shown 25/Apr/16

The techies have traced a batch of heroin found at an alien crime scene to a Colombian drug cartel. The ETU send our heroes into the jungle. Luckily they have some mercenaries as backup, so there are lots of redshirts to be wiped out in an extended Predator homage. However, in all fairness the location shooting gives this show the look of superior production values.

We learn a bit about the background of the other agents. Regan ( Britne Oldford ) was a normal American teenage girl until she discovered she was an alien. She ended up becoming a homeless girl, on the run from the Hunters. Briggs (Mark Coles Smith) was in Australian Special Forces in Iraq, until his unit was wiped out by an alien. This is ironic, because ETU has a policy of killing all the witnesses. For some reason, he and Carroll were both recruited while the mercenaries are regarded as expendable.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 4] Love and Violence
Shown 02/May/16

Agent Flynn Carroll (Nathan Phillips) catches his arch-enemy, Lionel McCarthy (Julian McMahon - Fantastic Four ). McCarthy's female associate is captured too. She is creating a cocoon out of some sort of secreted resin. There is a large parasite growing on her spine.

The aliens have Carroll's teenage foster-daughter as well as his wife. This ups the ante a bit, so the ETU must take extra steps to make McCarthy talk.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 5] Her Body in My Soul
Shown 09/May/16

Flynn believes his wife is dead. However, the stepdaughter was contacted by someone posing as her. Flynn investigates, in the hope of solving the mystery. Did the aliens kill his wife, or was she one of them?

An international financier is involved. It looks like he is laundering the drug cartel's money for the aliens.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 6] Bunker Soldier
Shown 16/May/16

The laundered drug money leads to a prison in Turkey. Our heroes send a team in to kidnap and torture the prison's governor. Luckily local law enforcement is completely corrupt, the stereotypical portrayal of every Third World country.

We get flashbacks of the origin story of the alien leader, Brother Number Four. He spent the 1980s in Eastern Europe, as a rebel leader financed by the CIA to fight the Russian occupiers. No, absolutely no similarities to any more modern real-life villains.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 7] Kissing the Machine
Shown 23/May/16

Regan ( Britne Oldford ) is in alien custody. Somehow the alien boss, Brother Four, smuggled himself and Regan from Turkey to the USA. Flynn's wife is the deprogrammer. We get a lot of exposition about the aliens - for example, they are hermaphrodites and need a group of nine to breed.

The ETU's only chance to get their agent back is if they find the mole. They arrest a suspect, but it could be a red herring.

Jackson the boss gets intel from an old contact he knew in his CIA days. They get a lead on the aliens' plans. It turns out they have spent over two decades secretly mining lithium, a radioactive isotope that might be used in the manufacture of a dirty bomb.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 8] The More I See You
Shown 30/May/16

The aliens have done their house-cleaning. They are preparing for the next step of their evil plan.

Flynn has still not gotten over his wife. He and the aussie go off to investigate a lead.

Regan ( Britne Oldford ) is in ETU custody. She refuses to cooperate unless she gets to see her father, who the aliens claimed was in ETU custody. It turns out the government has a secret prison. The boss takes the opportunity to check out how Lionel McCarthy (Julian McMahon - Fantastic Four ) is doing.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 9] Promise
Shown 06/Jun/16

The alien girl Regan ( Britne Oldford ) interviews her father, and gets more info from him than the MIBs did in ten years of torture. He tells her how to get in touch with her mother, who is a senior agent in the alien conspiracy. Unfortunately she is also a cold-hearted killer whose only priority is to complete her project - The Purge.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 10] Our System
Shown 13/Jun/16

The FBI Agent has flashbacks to his time when he served in the US military in Iraq. He and his unit encountered an unknown opposing force, and the Fed was the only one who came out intact. This is awfully similar to his new cow-orker's story, the guy who was in the Australian SAS. If they have identical memories it could be a Manchurian Candidate situation. Also, it is strange that the Fed had a previous encounter with aliens and yet this was never mentioned until now. In truth, this is probably just bad writing. However, the Fed cannot be certain so he goes to visit his former commanding officer to see if he can jog a few old memories.

The female agent is back from her attempt to kill her own mother. Unfortunately she seems to have taken after mama in terms of her combat skills, so they were well-matched. Now the agent is weakened, but she accepts a mission anyway. She must intercept and interrogate the Fed's foster-daughter.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 11] Telegraph
Shown 20/Jun/16

The new techie at the MIB HQ has managed to decipher the alien language. Of course, this is illogical - language is not a code that can be broken, because it does not have a logical structure. This is why the US Marine Corps used Navajo code-talkers in World War Two. However, let us ignore this illogical premise for a moment. After all, this is a show about aliens that wear human skin as a meat-suit.

The MIBs send out a fake message to the aliens, summoning them to meet at a remote hotel in the USA. The boss lady wants to wipe the aliens out in one go. However, she does not bother to wire the place with explosives. Instead her plan is to send in the troops, so that they can fight the aliens at close quarters. Not a good idea, when you consider that the aliens have super-human strength, speed, and accelerated healing factor.

The alien boss and his top agents discover the MIBs have set a trap. The Fed's wife goes looking for him, so she can talk him out of it. She claims that the aliens are peaceful. The alien boss also has a plan to save his people from the trap.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 12] Pretending to See the Future
Shown 27/Jun/16

Jackson is no longer boss of the MIBs because he defied the mad woman in charge. However, someone using alien tech attempts an assassination on him. He holes up in a remote safe house, and the Aussie thug drops by to help him.

The Fed and the alien girl Regan ( Britne Oldford ) are on the run. They cannot decide if the Hunters are actually planning to leave Earth, as the Fed's wife claimed, or if they are going to launch a genocidal strike against humanity. As a result, they decide to go on the offensive and gain more info. They try to kidnap the human collaborator arms dealer, Viktor Karp, but they end up with his son instead. The bad news is, the son is dying of Leukaemia. The good news is, he has an experimental drug that might cure him. The bad news is, the new drug is made from alien blood so it might kill him instead. Will our heroes discover a cure for cancer?

Whatever happened to Lionel McCarthy (Julian McMahon - Charmed )? He seemed like such an important character, especially since he is played by the most recognisable actor in the show.

Hunters Hunters [Season 1, Episode 13] New Holy Ground
Shown 11/Jul/16

The episode starts with a helpful mini-documentary explaining what Project Orion was. It turns out that the spaceship the aliens have been building for the last few decades uses nuclear bombs to provide propulsion. The good news is, the aliens will soon be gone from Earth. The bad news is, the fallout will spread across the continental United States.

Lionel McCarthy (Julian McMahon - Charmed ) leads the MIBs to the alien launch site in northern Mexico. Yes, a heavily-armed US government hit squad crosses the border into a foreign country in force. Unfortunately Briggs suspects what Jackson did, and is willing to blackmail his boss.

As the humans double-cross each other, so the aliens also have an internal dispute. Moussa has somehow decided that the old enemy has infiltrated their ranks. Why this suddenly occurred to him with about 24 hours before the launch is not really explained.

The ending is a setup for the next Season. The lines have been re-drawn, and new sides have been picked.






Hunters Hunters [Season 1 , Episode 1 ]
Shown th October 2016 [Wednesday]

Reviewed in our special supplement Hunters

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