The Orville has quickly become one of my favorite shows, in its first season the number of episodes was rather limited yet it shows great potential for future seasons. It provides a nice balance of light drama and humor while also focusing on some current issues or well concepts within modern society. Each episode aims to explore a different topic as well as fleshing out a particular character's back story. This was great as many shows take forever to make side characters matter or have any sort of importance and already after one short season we're able to get an idea of motivations along with what niche all the key ones fill.
It's been a real nice mix of episodes as well not only with the concepts, but in the sort of separate stories they've been telling. Sometimes there's a large planet to venture onto, a lost ship or even some political issues. I would personally like to see some bigger multiple episode story arcs appear, yet we have seen some minor details in that regard with certain events getting references throughout. It did take some time for things to get rolling, but very early on I felt that the overall show got into a comfortable gear that I was truly enjoying.
It's great that The Orville is attempting to move past some clichés that one would expect in a show and it's something, at least in the first season that you can watch any episode while not feeling lost. The acting was mostly great, there were a couple times where some of the weaker characters stuck out but other times where key members excelled. I felt that Seth MacFarlane's Mercer has a sense of charisma fitting naturally at the Captain's helm. The show didn't carry his typical style of comedy and that was great, I was worried jumping in and felt the comedic aspects were light while not taking away from the serious tones present at times. I do however expect some sort of musical based episode down the road.
Furthermore I was impressed by the quality of the CGI as it was well done. This is followed by the great open galaxy areas and clean sets that brought enough of a futuristic look while having reminders of modern times that I'd imagine future generations will know well. I want to also make mention of the really great characters of Bortus (Peter Macon) and Alara (Halston Sage), they both had a number of fantastic moments.
I really enjoyed The Orville, it didn't take long to get going and the selection of episodes present in the first season were great. I'm eager to see more of it and hope there's an extension of episodes in future seasons. I would like to see what might be the central enemies get more presence along with having some deeper story arcs as I just like narratives in that format. The standalone style worked well here and it seemed like they got the key job done of covering the setup issues while granting us an in-depth look at each of the core members. The dramatic elements were well handled, comedy didn't over shadow that and tone wise it feels light hearted. That really work for this type of show and it makes the whole Sci-Fi space thing bright again, exciting exploration instead of being constantly gritty.
The Orville Review at Home with TV Viewing