I had a Kyle XY marathon over the Christmas holidays for the purpose of this review, and I must say, it was an interesting if somewhat disturbing experience. First, I must admit I never saw any of the first season of Kyle XY except the first half of the first episode when it premiered, so when I was sent season II to review, I wondered if there would be a problem catching up. Not to worry - although I am sure there are some things I missed, each episode begins with scenes from previous episodes, and I already knew the basics:
Kyle wakes up in a forest at age 16 without any idea of who he is, without any memory of the past 16 years, and without basic life skills, but he learns at a prodigious rate. He is taken in by a kindly, motherly counselor and "adopted" by her family. In Season 2, Kyle discovers how he was scientifically created by Adam Bailin and he starts to train his extraordinary abilities. Kyle’s link to Jessi XX are also developed and new relationships begin between Kyle and Amanda, Jessi and Declan, and Josh and Andy.
Kyle XY has an intriguing plot, and appears to be a knock-off of "Smallville" which is also filmed in the Vancouver, British Columbia area and shares many of the same plot lines. The characters are believable enough to create a connection with viewers. The writing is good - the stories hold a viewer's interest, and there is attention to detail. Small things mentioned in previous episodes are referred to again, so there is a continuity between episodes that is realistic. The show has also done a top-notch job of finding cast members that bear a remarkable resemblance to each other, and it is nice to see Ally Sheedy onscreen again as Jessi's biological mother.
There is a very loose moral compass guiding the show, and there are scenes which try to insert some kind of moral standard. Each episode begins and ends with Kyle making philosophical comments on life and what he is learning. Kyle is a likable character with an innate sense of right and wrong. He is the most moral person in the Trager household, and he is usually a good influence on those around him. The Trager father does try to talk to his young teen boy about abstaining from sex until he "knows it's right" before tossing him a condom, and the Trager daughter does decide to "revirginate," at least until prom.
However, while Kyle XY is produced for the ABC Family channel, it falls far, far short of a family program. The family that takes Kyle in and becomes his legal guardian in season II is portrayed as a "progressive" family. This is a family where the teenage son keeps his porn under his mattress, where the teen-age daughter talks casually about her on-again, off-again virtue, where her boyfriend talks openly about renting a $1,000 suite for after the prom in front of her parents. Every show features the promiscuity of teenagers as a given, and even the "good girl" talks about her decision to give up her virginity to the cad she has been dating, who has been sleeping with all the girls in school.
The stereotypes are predicable and blatant. There is the requisite same-sex couple defense show where the predictably ogreish principle just won't get with the progressive program and allow homosexual couples to buy tickets to the spring dance. The only person portrayed as a church goer is the predictably harsh, hypocrite of a father who drank Scotch, read the Bible, and was cruel, unloving and unforgiving to his son. Ho hum. How many television programs are going to keep force feeding this tripe to us? But targeting teens is especially effective. After all, the shows themselves are about a teen's need to conform, and the more we assault them with shows portraying cool teens behaving in an immoral fashion and Christians as harsh, evil, hypocrites, the faster our morals and society will crumble.
This is not a show for teens, and frankly, is is a bit creepy to watch the show's 26-year-old star, Matt Dallas, bite his lip ala Bill Clinton and try to behave like a 16-year-old. Kyle XY is all about situational ethics and relative truth -- finding out what is "right for you" and "making your own choices." It is a show where being "progressive" is much preferred to being moral, where purity is scoffed at, and even the teens who are still virgins or "revirginated" are planning their first or next sexual escapade.
I read where Miley Cyrus said in an interview this past year that "Sex and the City" is her favorite TV show. I really have to question Christian parents who let their impressionable teen children watch shows as corrupt as "Sex and the City," and unfortunately, Kyle XY is "Sex and the City" for teens. This is not appropriate viewing for teens due to adult content, sexual language, and depicting teens without any moral standards as being not only cool, but role models.
· Alternate Ending
· Livin’ with the X’s
· Facing the Future
· The Science of Kyle XY
· Deleted Scenes
· Audio Commentaries – Featuring the Cast, Writers and Producers
STREET DATE: December 30, 2008
Suggested retail price: $39.99 US
Rated: TV-14 DLSV
Run time: Approximately 994 minutes
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