Powers is a new TV series available on PlayStation as original programming specifically for the console. Based off the graphic novel of the same name written by Brain Michael Bendis (who acted as a writer and executive producer on the show), Powers follows the story of Christian Walker/Diamond played by Sharlto Copley (District 9, Elysium) as he tries to live as a detective solving crimes that relate to super-beings known as Powers. The thing that makes Walker different from other detectives is that he himself used to be a Power before they were taken from him.
Enlisted with a new partner Deena Pilgrim played by Susan Heyward (The Following, Mother of George), their story starts off with a murder of Walkers old Power friend known as Olympia. Olympia’s death is suspicious and as the story unravels we learn more about Walkers past and that old adversary’s may be back.
Powers starts off with a bang. It sets the scene showing you that it won’t be afraid to tackle some graphic violence and some dark themes. The production values are quite good though some of the CGI seemed like this was a pretty low budget show. There is a bit too much exposition and tries to hold the viewer’s hand a little too much. The costumes seem something you would get at a Halloween party but some of them are meant to look like that. What I think this did really well was actually ground it in our world as we have it. It shows everything from the ground level and makes you want to stay there and not worry about what those heroes’ in the sky are doing. A lot of credit should go to the performances, beginning with Sharlto Copley.
Copley is an ex-Power struggling to deal with his relatively new mortality. He is trying to live this new life as best he can. There is something in his mind that can’t seem to let go of his past. He is constantly haunted by the man known as Wolfe played by Eddie Izzard (Oceans 12, Valkyrie). In the beginning it felt like Copley was almost going Christian Bale Batman with his voice, but over the episode it softens to be gruffer than throat cancer. As I said before I feel like a few of his scenes were there for the sake of exposition, while most of the other characters actually get some scenes to show off.
Heyward holds her own with Copley and plays off his stern demeanour well. She is quick witted and actually seems like she wants to learn about this world and wants Walker to teach her. Some of the other characters we get to see are Johnny Royalle played by Noah Taylor (Edge of Tomorrow, Game of Thrones) who is believed to be dead until Olympia’s murder. Walker then starts to put together pieces that Royalle and a Wannabe named Calista played by Olesya Rulin (High School Musical1, 2 & 3) are somehow connected to the murder.
My expectations for this show weren’t extremely high but I was still interested in this show as a business decision for PlayStation. Even though I think there are a few script flaws this did exceed my modest expectations. It’s definitely worth a look and considering you can watch this first episode for free on the PlayStation YouTube channel, I suggest you give it a shot.
Article by Daniel Clements