I tried to skip this show as it’s a seasonal occurrence and at first blush just looked like a re-hash of the SARS franchise but when people wouldn’t stop talking about – or not letting me out of my house over it – I decided to tune in and binge the whole show.
To start, yes I know this is just an America remake of a Chinese Drama but I don’t want to read subtitles right now so I’m just going to review the American version you all wouldn’t stop talking about these last few years.
Season 1, How I Met the Virus
So Season 1 started off as a Limited Mini-Series originally titled “15 Days to Flatten the Curve” and when the government realized how popular it was, for their interests, they funded and renewed it for an entire season. Now normally a show is just picked up for a set number of episode but this was picked up and turned into a soap opera that ran daily.
As such the characters and narrative arc were all over the place with little consistency. Because the story was in the hands of so many writers and they had so many different episodes coming out it just lost all credibility and coherence almost immediately out the gate.
The writers couldn’t decide if Masks Work or not, if a vaccine could be trusted or not and the season 1 finale culminated with the show’s heroes, The Resistance, promising to defy the evilest of evil men in the White House and they implored the people to not trust his vaccine.
There was an emphasis on keeping people out of churches and from seeing loved ones after the mini-series STARTED with telling people to go Chinatown for a parade. I don’t know, it was all over the place and the main characters just lacked empathy or really any human emotions. They weren’t likable or believable characters.
It wasn’t a very good show, it had bad writing and all of the reviewers were clearly bought off. Remember when Netflix removed their dislike button to prop up an Amy Schumer Special? Or when Youtube got rid of downvotes? Or when Rotten Tomatoes kept manipulating votes to favor companies like Disney and The Message?
Yeah, this time the studio managed to get all of the social media giants – Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, Reddit etc etc to de-platform and ban people for talking about how the writing was in this show. If you pointed out how the Christ figure, a medical bureaucrat, was lying or a bad caricature – they’d ban you. You couldn’t point out plot holes or how bad the writers were at continuity without risking a ban.
Being that Season 1 ended on a dystopian “Papers Please” cliffhanger it wasn’t much of a surprise when the show was renewed for a second season especially with companies like Pfizer as the biggest and most vocal sponsors.
Season 2, Deep in the City
So Season 2 starts with a new President continuing to follow the ever changing advice of his bureaucrats and still the show can’t find it’s voice or purpose. Every episode is worse than the last with the incoherence and Season 2 ended with The Resistance literally changing definitions or what words meant in order to try and retcon the story up until this point.
There were no real heroes or villains being marketed properly because they shifted from the bad man in the white house to former reality stars and the evils of their podcasts for asking questions.
Season 2 is just season one with less coherence and a smaller audience owing to the bad writing, bad acting and broken plot. It was obvious that they were trying to turn this into a cinematic universe and likely tie it entirely into the floundering Build Back Better franchise but the focus was on marketing and not storytelling so this hasn’t really worked either.
A lot of people were expecting season 2 to finally be the end of the show and to maybe see a reboot in a few years but no, somehow Pfizer agreed to pick it up for a third season which is where we are today.
Season 3, Game of Omicron
Now the show has just gone into full retcon and gas-lighting mode. One of the new heroes, the Governor of New York, is out using the exact same talking points as the show’s villains from the first season without any sense of irony. They’ve tried to cast one of the blowhard congress-critters into a love interest with some odd “if they call me a hypocrite for acting like a hypocrite it’s because they want to sleep with me” jab and it’s just, yeah it’s pretty cringe.
The show was mildly interesting when it started, became tedious and incoherent towards the middle of season 1, really jumped the shark in season 2 and now it just feels like poorly written fan-faction as written by an AI that’s been forced to watch dystopian movies if those movies were made by Hallmark.
Overall I hated this series and would give it a 1 on my rating scale. Do not recommend. There are rumors that season 3 might be cut short but this is a passion project for those funding it so it might just go on forever with fewer and fewer people paying attention. There’s already a FluRona spinoff in the works. If it does get cancelled don’t be shocked if they don’t try to make reboots and spin-offs every season as the merchandising, especially branded masks and jabs, were too profitable for the companies involved to just walk away any time soon.