TV Review: Outcast Episode S1E1 A Darkness Surrounds Him

Outcast CinemaxBased on the Skybound/Image comic by creator Robert Kirkman and artist Paul Azaceta, Outcast follows Kyle Barnes, a young man who has been plagued by demonic possession all his life. Now, with the help of the Reverend Anderson, a preacher with personal demons of his own, Kyle embarks on a journey to find answers and regain the normal life he lost. But what Kyle discovers could change his fate — and the fate of the world — forever.

While Kirkman is known for a certain comic and television series featuring the dead coming back to life, he tackles religion in Outcast, a topic that’s generally avoided in his The Walking Dead. While it’s easy to dismiss the series as an Exorcist wannabe, the focus on Kyle Barnes, played by Patrick Fugit, is what sets the series apart and this first episode. Like The Walking Dead, it’s a slow start that focuses on the characters as opposed to the scares. Kirkman seems to enjoy putting ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances.

What this episode does is set things up quite well. Barnes is the focus and about a half dozen other characters in his world are also introduced, but it’s really about Barnes and the cross he has to bear.

Fugit’s performance is excellent with a look, a twitch, taking place of dialogue. This is a minimal performance in many ways, which makes the emotional, explosive parts, that much more impactful.

The first episode is faithful to the comic, so for those that enjoyed it, you’ll likely enjoy seeing it play out on the screen and it should be interesting to see how closely it sticks to that going forward.

Based on this first episode, I’m looking forward to seeing what comes next and what they can do with the show. Kirkman looks to have another hit on his hands.

Prepare yourself for the debut Friday June 3 at 10PM.

Overall Rating: 7.95

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