The first episode of the new The Event series started well, and then took its cue from Lost going back and forth between flashforwards and flashbacks, but wove a pretty good story. While I only recognized three of the actors - Jason Ritter as Sean Walker, Blair Underwood as President Elias Martinez, and Laura Innes as Sophia Maguire - the rest of the talent in this first episode brought the chops to their roles for the most part.
The series appears to follow Sean Walker (Jason Ritter), a man who, while investigating the mysterious disappearance of his girlfriend, begins to discover the biggest cover-up in U.S. history. In the pilot episode, told primarily in flashbacks, Walker and his girlfriend were on a cruise where he planned to propose to her. Before he could get the chance, he returned from a snorkelling trip to find her not only missing, but with no evidence that she ever existed or that the two of them had ever boarded the cruise ship. Scenes set later showed him attempting to hijack a plane, apparently to prevent it from being used to assassinate President Elias Martinez (Blair Underwood). Other flashbacks showed that shortly after taking office, Martinez had discovered the existence of Mount Inostranka (??), a secret detention facility in Alaska, and had proposed to close it, disclose its existence and free those held there, a group led by Sophia Maguire (Laura Innes), over the objections of advisors who had been withholding its existence from him. The attempt on his life, stopped when the hijacked airplane mysteriously disappeared into a hole in the space above it, took place just prior to a news conference at which he was going to announce this along with Sophia. She told him "they" had saved them, and when he asked who "they" were, said "I haven't told you everything".
The episode was certainly interesting as pilots for a series go, and had lots of mystery and a touch of science fiction to it that struck the right chord with me. A lot of the characters in this pilot were meant to be sympathetic, and the conspiracy that surrounds these characters intrigued me enough that I'll be back for the second episode next week. I just hope and pray that the series doesn't take the Lost approach and that the flashbacks are more character intensive, and that some of the questions are answered before new questions are asked. But so far, it looks promising.