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Wellington

The curse of one is my frustration!

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Hi

What is special around MillenniuM for me is that I have seen the whole series twice in the past year and a half. It was the first time I saw it, by the way! Until 2000 I was living in France and made no effort to watch it because of its bad publicity. On second thought, I think it is better like this because my pleasure would have been spoiled by delay in the programming or even non-foreseen cancelations. I was able to watch MM as a former X-phile, a very disappointed X-phile indeed! Here in Canada I benefited from a weekly broadcast turned into a daily one and I can watch it on two channels (one French and one English)!!!

I watched MM the way I liked it: late in the evening, with nothing disturbing around save the cats. I was eager to be on Friday for the weekly broadcast was on Friday 11pm. But one hour was enough, I did not have need for more. I tasted it like a wine... My first episode was the first part of Roosters/Owls, a great plot indeed. It was a pity that I was not more acquainted with the characters or the Group, but everything got immmediately an aura of power. Frank for his wisdom and philosophy, the Group for its roots and a perspiring hidden agenda, etc... I was in and did not wanted to get out! Of course the end of S3 came quickly after that and I had to wait until last summer to watch S1. Moments of bliss: all the episodes were re-broacast on saturday nights, 6 episodes per night! Yes, call it a dream!  :;): This is how I understand MillenniuM, through my thoughts and wills.

Watching all the series in such a short time was good to highlight the evolution of some situations and characters. However I have not made any transfer of it in my life. I am simply glad that I have never been involved in some kind of story like these! I like the way Frank is nothing of a hero. He is just a man with a family and a job. Err yes, there is that gift too. Well, I guess he choosed fine being a profiler instead of an accounter :;): ! I liked the way he was made very vulnerable and strong at the same time. Suffering a breakdown because of your job is not enviable and I hope I will never know more about it. I am not sure I would be able to cope and start again. Then he has his family, very close to him, and that is enviable. Jordan is simply his rewards for all the efforts he makes and all the dark moments he is going through. She is his escape and I was not surprised that he rushed with her at the end of S3. Alter Jordan only a bit and you kill Frank. I do not have children of mine, but I really wish they could be as rewarding as Jordan! On the other hand, Catherine did not impress me. Maybe I cannot understand the way she and Frank can live as husband and wife, but I wished she were more communicative. She does not seem to understand Frank as well as she would like to, she cannot bear a life turned sour, but she never gets angry, she never looks menacing. I cannot see why she lets things crash like this, without even trying to divert Frank from his occupations. Maybe that is the way the scenarists wanted to show her: a wife with only a grey zone, a neverending fuse. But she went away anyway. I expect my girlfriend to shake me up when things start to go wrong...

Frank's world is his real curse. He is not a referee, only a watcher. He is often late, because Evil is smart and swift. He can only report and his actions never have the impact he would like them to have. I wonder how he can socialise: he knows Evil better than any of his partners, he knows it inside Man. He knows that society is a mere zoo with many wild beasts not waiting to be tamed, and how that seems true when watching the news! He knows his efforts will never be enough. He lives things and see them as they truly are. And I guess he realises that others live the same kind of things but are totaly oblivious to their true nature. That makes him alone and he might see his work as a vain effort. Worse than that, he is not allowed to understand why it is like this. He can only be passive, and has no solution to create a preventive momentum. It is a chance that demons are sometimes at the wheel, because if the human mind alone can do such atrocities, then each and every one of us would be both a potential healer and killer at the same time. And then there would be no solution, only painkillers. And it was hard enough without the Group... I am glad not be in his mind. How could I live with this scare, how could I leave one horrible case to jump into another? Is this life?

Then there is the Group. What a brilliant idea, transposing the millennial fears in our time. What an inspiration, creating a story with a real countdown to 2000 as time keeper. And what a disaster to cancel it before its natural end. It only needed one more season, because there would be no meaning after January 1st. Only one season to get the chance to create maybe a legend for years to come. What a waste, a pityful waste. I think I will always be resentful for that. There are so much crap on tv, so much nonsense, so many debilitating programs. Why choose to kill that? Four years, nothing more is needed. There is no way Millennium could have turned a X-File, extended until even the actors get bored, extended to the point that you cannot even remember how it all started. This is a real waste of time and money. However, taste is not to be discussed. Let me get back to the Group. It is almost nothing in the first season, a crime consulting agency, few people from it, good relationship with Frank. To be honest, if my first episodes had been the beginning of S1 and not Roosters/Owls, I do not think I would have sticked to my TV set! S1 deals with Frank and the Group is bidding its time. It is waiting to reveal itself in power.

In S2 Peter Watts becomes strongly interesting. It seems to me that, from Frank's point of view, the Group and Watts will evolve in opposite ways from then. At the beginning of S2, Watts is more like a bad guy keeping secrets and manipulating Frank, and the Group is still ghostly behind. At the end of S3, Watts has made efforts to sort out what he thinks and what the Group does, and the Group is the new menace. This is the rythm I like, it allows less tremendous stories to be told. I love how the series is a whole.

Watts is very ambiguous. He acts as a patron to Frank, but never tries to justify the Group when Frank asks for answers. He is deeply and personaly involved, however he manages to keep his family together. Watts is more receptive to the religious aspects of the Group, contrary to Frank who does not want to test the barrier between fervor and fanatism. As a non-American, I think Watts is depicted as the average American shown by such series. His faith in God is strong, active, imposed to his surroundings. But he has something more than the average American: he has some knowledge, some mission and some responsibility unknown to others. But he does not consider this as a privilege, it is his burden. Frank has a curse and Peter has a burden. Watts does not delight himself with the "secret society" hip and he would even prevent that from happening to any candidate under his patronising. His faith in the Group and his mission reaches some pinacles every time the past reminds him of the path to be followed. He accepts that he is only one of many who have to pursue this job, and I think there is no feigned humility. Contrary to Lara, he does not feel lucky with the chance to live when it happens. He will not sit and wait for a happy ending. But this very faith is finally shaken to the grounds. As revering of the past and traditions as he can be, he cannot ignore the warnings emitted by Frank. He will not help seeing that he is a pawn doing something more than what he thought. To me, Peter Watts appeared maybe as the more human of him and Frank. But he has some problem in his mind, knowing what may fall upon all of them and still putting a mask of normality on his face. How can he let his family be like this, in ignorance? Is it a way to spare them the fear of an end? I can only admire his dedication. It has rarely been an asset for a series, where the action prevails and the background follows. Peter is the man next door at heart.

The Group. What can that be? A secret society, a cult, a shadow government, ...? Many points have already been discussed. The Group makes me love MM. How can such an organisation survive 2000 years to still be active nowadays with the same purpose? It has to be deadly serious! I cannot imagine working about something that would not be defined before 1000 years. The more we know about it and the less we understand. The main hierarchy is simply beautiful, but very spiritualy oriented. Is this Old Man the real keeper of what bonds the members together? What did it know that others do not? The operative hierarchy is more efficient. There are executives with goals, means and staff. All we see about them is efficiency, discreet meetings, secrets keeping and paranoïa. And no fun at all. There must be a damn good sense of organisation: keep an eye on your mission, another on your members and a last to do consultancy for the FBI. I enjoyed discovering the Group at the same time as Frank, learning what he learnt, imagining the rest. If you elude the evil part of their acts, there remains quite a good legend. I do not know why such fascination for mystic purposes. Easy mysteries, though, easy scripts then... How sad that it sometimes fell in the X-F realm: double faced Elder, conspiracy evocation. Anyway, what remains in me is the pure goal of the Group, since its origins, and I could sum it up to the Old Man only. They tried to prevent the apocalyps at the first millennium and it did not happen. Because of them? Staying quiet and no act would not help such a "rescue operation", but in the end, why did it not happen? It has no more certainty for this millennium: what are the signs? what is the best course of action? will it succeed? if yes, will it be because of what was done? Is there anything to prevent at all? With such a belief, you need that Old Man, you need to see things on a larger scale, you need to understand that though your efforts may not have great consequences, action is better than inaction. Is there poetry in it? Of course! How marvelous is that ground where the OM lives, surrounded by strange hounds, amidst graves. An unassailable haven, built on the past, on tradition, and always reminded about the true state of things. This is the core of the Group. There is no more answer here than in a federal building, but there are roots. This means a lot to me: I like traditions, their adaptation, their origins. I like when a what has a why, and when there is a will of transmission from generation to generation. I think that much of what lies today gets its meaning in History, and mysterious whereabouts can only add to it.

Lara Means looked strange to me at first. She was nearly equal to Frank: they share the knowledge of the human mind, they both have a disturbing gift and they both are aware of something perilous ahead of them. They are both stakes in the rivalry inside the Group. But Lara is eager to know more, and fast. As soon as her angel stops appearing to her, she precipitates her involvement with the Group and the Group, in shortage of reliable manpower, does not make her initiation smooth. In Lovecraft's world, madness is worse than death. Lara chose both. What could those revelations be? What made her break down? What is powerful enough to get a psychologist mad? Did she try too hard to build hopes of a cure for all the bad things her angel warned her about? Did she saw that the Group was the end of her hopes? She said they were right all the way... What kind of revelation can make a stable skeptic young woman fall into the blindest faith? I am pretty sure that it was not some good news! I hated those scenes where she throwed the same dice again and again, they were disturbing. Why did she try to defy a written fate by testing the chance? She was initiated and could not get back. The end got closer and closer and nothing could be done? Nothing would be done? She illustrates the fact that knowledge is a weapon, and the knowledge of the Group its first strategic advantage. I often fancied myself being allowed to taste some kind of universal truth. More than this, I wished I would understand it. The aura of mysticism is huge through Lara. She is Prometheus: now that she got the knowledge, she can take some time to regret it and suffer from it. This run for knowledge, for answers, is what alienated her. But boy! Were I Frank when she told him that all was true (and more), that they knew, I would have gone in, without doubt... madness or not... I missed Lara in the following episodes. Did she die of the Marburg virus? Could she have finally regain her brains back? Could she have helped Frank in any way, like an oracle? Her gesture was clear, however. By giving her syringe to Frank, she accepted that she would not be there when the countdown ticks to 0. She finally gave up her hopes, although her last one could have been Frank. Her death is not martyrdom, it is just the result of a poor bet from the Group.

Emma Hollis did not impress me neither. How flat can a character be sometimes! From a FBI pretext, she came to life when the proposal was made to her: initiation for a cure. I do not have many things to say about her because I think S3 was a long introduction to her personality. Interestingly, her initiation did not stirred the same reaction as Lara's. But she made it by duty, not faith. She is not on the Group's quest, she is on her own, for the sake of her late sister. That makes her close to Frank. But can one be a member for his personal interests? What does she really understand about the End? A lot less than her father, or so it seems. She lacks development, that is sad...

Well, I guess that is quite all what MillenniuM has meant to me! Contrary to other series, this one still makes me think, even after 2 viewings. The y2k appeal has been properly torpedoed, alas!, and the plot went down in flames, but it was so intelligent that he could be a reference. I like this exploration of the mind, of beliefs, of the roots of Evil in society. I am just now wanting those DVD!!!

Regards

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