Synopsis: This weekend saw Fox air two episodes of Fantasy Island back to back to close the first season off. The first episode ‘The Romance & The Bromance’ sees A bookworm who wants to say yes to life go back in time and meet her favorite writer. While the Bromance part of the story focuses on a complete survivalist who wants to be challenged with something he hasn’t trained for.
Meanwhile, the season finale, which was titled ‘Día de los Vivos’ sees Ruby reunited with her husband. The only thing is. He is dead and his visit to the island is only temporary.
Sunday night saw fans of the new Fantasy Island series get rather spoiled as they were treated to two episodes. The first, which was titled ‘The Romance & The Bromance’ introduces us to Isabel, a bookwork who wants to say yes to life. To that end, she is gifted the opportunity of going back in time to meet her favorite writer. She turns out to be a woman who has been publishing under her husband’s name. Of course, Isabel and Rachel Goldwater fall deeply in love and defy the conventions of the day. I particularly enjoyed the moment where Isabel gives old Edmund Walsh what for when he threatens to rip up Goldwater’s contract.
For the bromance part of the episode, we meet modern-day adventure Brian Cole who wants to be challenged with something he has not trained for. So the island introduces him to the teenaged version of himself. Indeed, Brian has issues from his teenage years to deal with.
The series finale episode, which was titled ‘Día de los Vivos’ sees some dead folk show up on the island. The first of which is Mel. Ruby’s husband who has returned to the island to visit his wife before moving on. We also get to meet Jasper. A rather self-absorbed character who has lived a fairly hedonistic lifestyle. Jasper’s fantasy is to get into heaven as for the moment he is in purgatory. So, the island is Jaspers’s one chance at redemption, which means he has to make things right with Ramon. An artist who Jasper thought of as a son, but didn’t really treat very well in life.
The actors did pretty solid work in this episode. I really enjoyed how well handled the romance was between Isabel and Rachel and both Caitlin Stasey and Gillian Saker did a fantastic job of selling their romance. I particularly enjoyed Isabel’s rebellion against the social mores of the time period and how that rebellious spirit drew Rachel to her. In terms of the Bromance side. I quite enjoyed Eric Winter’s performance as Cole and thought the moment where he meets his teenage self was genius.
However, I think the acting performance and the story for the season finale were generally stronger. It was really nice to see Ruby reunited with Mel and I loved the fact that we got to see the two actors that played the older versions of these two characters get a final moment. Leslie Jordan was fantastically entertaining as Jasper. I really liked his scene with young Mel who is once again played brilliantly by Adain Bradley. However, it is Jasper’s scenes with Ramon that really flesh out his story.
Fantasy Island finishes strong with two great stories. Although I liked the second one a bit more than the first because it delved into the mythology of the island and even talked about the original Mr. Roarke and his right-hand man Tattoo.
Hopefully, this show gets a second try to see if Elena Roarke and Ruby can find that similar dynamic because it isn’t quite there yet.
- CGI & Stunts9.4
- Incidental Music9.0