In Review: The War of the Worlds – Episode 2

The second episodes show us the struggle to keep together in the face of overwhelming odds

Synopsis: Amy and George search desperately for each other as the Martian invasion spreads.

Review: The second episodes show us the struggle to keep together in the face of overwhelming odds, but the flashes of the future do not look overly hopeful either.

The Story

Having been separated last week. George and his girlfriend Amy frantically search for each other amid the ruins of martian occupied England. George travels with a group of survivors and some soldiers while his wife and brother Frederic get out of London in an attempt to escape the tyranny. Instead of reconnecting with Amy George winds up back with his wife and brother and an older lady and they struggle to find shelter away from the Martians.

In the future, we see Amy has survived and had a little boy. This future is shortly after the Martians have died. She gets a visit from Ogilvy who is looking the worst for wear having survived a few close shaves with death, which include a deadly virus. Amy tells Ogilvy that she things the Martians were not defeated by humanity, but just died. Whereas Ogilvy is concerned that Earth will never be the same again given that the Martians released a virus, which turned all plan life and the skies red.

The Acting

Rafe Spall puts in another solid performance as he shows the fear and terror of the invasion as he both documents his experiences and lives through them. There is a scene later in the episode where he literally breaks down in front of his wife, who is also very traumatized to a point where she does not particularly mention his girlfriend or show any animosity about it. As she rightly points out. They have got to survive.


This mini-series seems to be deviating a great deal from most versions of the story that I have seen and read. I was a little disappointed by how short-lived the priest’s rant was before he died. It goes to show you how much Jeff Wayne’s musical version of the story fleshed out his role given that he has a massive role in that.  Either way. It was fun to see Jonathan Aris go on an overly delusional optimistic rant as the priest before puking black stuff out his mouth and dying. The Klingons would be proud of him. He died well.

The War of the Worlds -Episode 2
  • Story
  • Acting
  • CGI & Stunts
  • Incidental Music

Ian Cullen is the founder of and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: When he is not writing for Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of You can contact ian at:
4 Comments on this post.
  • Stephen Jones
    25 November 2019 at 12:12 am -

    Umm, though George tells the military he’s looking for his wife, it’s actually pregnant girlfriend Amy he’s after – and conveniently finds amongst thousands of evacuees on the beach. He’s completely forgotten his legal wife. And, more shockingly, the dog. And the ranting old guy consumed by the black smoke of death was the Admiralty minister, not Wells’ priest. It’s been a long time since I read the book, but I don’t remember it being anything like this nonsense. Has anyone called it The Snore Of The Worlds yet? If not, I’d like to offer the phrase free of charge to any reviewer.

    • Ian Cullen
      25 November 2019 at 12:52 am -

      Admiralty minister sort of confused me a little. With just one episode left. I am beginning to doubt we’ll see the priest. Your right about his finding his wife though. As I said It was a bit weird that she didn’t make any comment about his girlfriend… Strikes me like they are trying to rewrite it to fill 3 hours of TV whereas a 90-minute movie would likely have been better. If they stuck closer to the actual book.

  • Gary Noden
    25 November 2019 at 1:01 pm -

    I have to disagree with your 8.9 out of 10. Stephen Spielberg’s version was better than this. The story was ben shifted from 1989 Victorian Britain to 1905’s Edwardian one, the character’s bear no resemblance to anyone in the book – indeed they are in fact direct pulls from reality in H.G.Wells and his second wife Amy whim he left his first wife for 10 yers after writing the book.

    The priest is not anything like the one in the book, who spends several chapters with the Narrator trapped in a house by the side of a martian cylinder before being taken by a Martian as food.

    And as for portrayal, George is a wimp, Amy is the strong one, Rupert Graves’ brother role is good but feels pegged on for exposition purposes and everyone else has the acting chops of the wood around them.

    I like the VFX albeit nothing like the stuff in the novel yet again.

    I doubt Harness has actually read the novel properly.

    My vote says 2 out of 10. And that is only because it actually has the black smoke that is in the book that no one else has ever touched on in their versions.

    Sorry, but I really am a bit sick of seeing seminal science fiction and fantasy “adapted” to something so far removed from the source.

    Stick to the book. Lord Of The Rings did, and it was amazing!

    • Ian Cullen
      1 December 2019 at 3:33 pm -

      The 8.9 was an aggregate score made up of all the other scores. I have since rewatched and realized I was a little generous on the story score and acting score. I will be watching tonight’s show. But have a feeling that ultimately it will feel disappointing. Especially given that I am a huge fan of the Jeff Wayne musical version as well as the George Pal version.