• Network: FOX
  • Series Premiere Date: Sep 26, 2011
  • Season #: 1
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 290 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 70 out of 290

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  1. Sep 27, 2011
    Incredibly awful writing. Inconsistent characters and annoying out-of-the-blue emo son who suddenly, inexplicably blames his dad. Poor production value on the sets. Wooden acting. No subtlety to the story. Really, really, really bad. It's like George Lucas wrote it.
  2. Sep 26, 2011
    A 65 average critic score for this debacle of a show? Are you serious? I just wasted 2 hours of my life that I can't get back. I was hoping for way more of a sci-fi/adventure type story but this ended up being a soap opera in the prehistoric days. Awful, really really awful. Do not waste your time with this show as it will be canceled during the first season.
  3. Sep 26, 2011
    I can't really give the premiere a "fair" review because I was unable to get past the first 45 minutes and thats even DVR'd WITHOUT commercials but it doesn't really matter because this sow sucks. It makes me question why producers and creators feel they have to make big budget tv projects SO void of good dialogue, intelligent writing, character complexity, and the list goes on. This show is DUMB in the truest sense of the word. It treats the viewers as if they're expected to simply ignorantly accept whatever science fictiony bs these writers could come up with. Shockingly unrealistic and a painful attempt to relate to wwhat they must think the "common fox viewer" is. I meeeaaaan the characters dress and talk like "typical" americans of today. There is absolutely nothing that distinguishes these people from a typical light modern drama even thought its set 150 years in the future and then 65 million years in the past. Not cutting edge. NOT edgy, risky, artistic, well acted, well written or attractive at ALL. What the most upsetting thing is that there was all the money in the world to make something great when others have done far more for far less ie LOST, Battlestar Gallactica, X-Files, I'm sure there are more. I would write in greater detail or even bother to give an example of this shows ironic one dimensionality but I encourage you to actually watch the first 120 minutes of what I pray will be a very short lived disaster just so you can see what really great people are capable of when they're not paying attention or are so rich, successful and established they forget how to make great entertainment. #FAIL Expand
  4. Oct 14, 2011
    The writing on this show is horrendous. I cannot stand the interaction between the characters. Nothing seems natural between them, it all seems forced. The casting is also a little off. If shows are trying to be like lost they need to realize that all characters do not need to be chiseled, beautiful models. Won't be checking this out again.
  5. Sep 28, 2011
    The first episode was simply boring. There was nothing new about it. The actors were bland, storyline pointless and very little mystery to it. I wasn't even blown away with the special effects. The most intense parts of the show didn't engage me. I couldn't care less about who lived or died. I'm not sure how much longer I could watch a show like this.
  6. Sep 30, 2011
    It was simply boring; every minute and every move could be foreseen and nothing surprising happened. The opening double episode was full of cliches. Unfortunately, now I foresee a dumb Jurassic Park-themed series instead of a promising sci-fi story. Too bad!
  7. Oct 8, 2011
    How could they spend so much money and create something so boring. Great opening and cool transition to T.N., and then wake me up when something happens besides a dreary family sitcom. Watched the 3rd episode, just in case, and the same mix of some action and mind-numbing camp life. It's a shame whoever created the show tried to appeal to such a wide variety of tastes that it just comes off bland. What a waste. Expand
  8. Oct 8, 2011
    This show is terrible. There are so many things wrong with it - no explanation for many aspects of the plot, parts that don't make a lick of sense, a son that all of a sudden has daddy issues, and a daughter playing the stereotype of the smart kid, only her acting is so bad that the best she manages to achieve is the not-so-smart kind trying to act. This has to be the poorest attempt at story telling that I have seen for a long while. My advice? Don't waste your time. Expand
  9. Dec 20, 2011
    I really had to challenge myself to finish watching the season. This show is: 10% Jurassic Park, 45% The Waltons, 45% scripts, poor ideas and cheesy dialogue from the lesser Star Trek shows (Deep Space Nine/Voyager/Enterprise). Exactly 10% of the show works. It's not the 1990's anymore, much less the 1960's. Battlestar Galactica set a high bar for modern scifi: Intelligent and gritty, great action, with realistic human drama at the center. You simply can't go back to the old formulas now. If Fox orders another season of this show without trimming all the fat, I guarantee I will not watch it. Expand
  10. Sep 27, 2011
    You'd think that the reason Spielberg has waited so long to produce a TV series about dinosaurs is that he was waiting for technology to catch up so that creatures that live up the standards set by Spielberg's own Jurassic Park became affordable for a TV-budget.

    Sadly, this is not true. Not a single dinosaur looked believable. I'm not even sure the series reached up to Walking with
    Dinosaurs when it comes to paleovisual believability. The dinosaurs simply don't move or behave in a convincing fashion, looking more like something taken out of the Attack of the Clones arena that the terrifying animals we saw in 1993.

    Storywise? While there was a potential for "Lord of the Flies" with raptors, this is "Lost in the Cretaceous". It's a telling fact only the "bad" humans (shockingly characterized by a rugged appearance) actually get eaten, whole 5 teenagers who get cornered out in the forest by a pack of what is probably 500-kg predators survive with only flesh wounds and a minor leg fracture. I had a hard time deciding which of the main male characters is a more entitled douche. The father who decides to have a third child in a world dying from overpopulation, then assaults police officers and gets locked up leaving his family to fend for themselves? The clueless teenager who meets a cute girl on the first day, somehow instantly makes a lot of friends, and then decides to scamper off into the primeval jungle, predator-infested jungle to drink moonshine?

    Bottom line? It's by all means watchable, but if you where expecting "Galactica" with dinosaurs, sorry.
  11. Sep 28, 2011
    A very painful first episode. The characters sucked, the acting was terrible, the plot was lame, and the special effects were just okay. Seriously, it was just bad. The way I see it is that the only way one could enjoy this show is if they have no brain. Which a lot of people don't.
  12. Oct 6, 2011
    I thought that FOX could do it better. Having into the game such a director as Jon Cassar, they could do it better, but the script is horrible! We can advance everything that is going to happen. If the shows continues like this, is going to fall quick.
  13. Oct 15, 2011
    One of the most important things for lending credibility to fictional characters is them them ask the questions and think the thoughts that normal human beings in their place would ask and think. The characters in Terra Nova fail doing so over and over again, leading to a cast made up mostly of zombies, staggering their way through badly written storywork. While the basic concepts of time travel, pollution and exodus are all potentially interesting, the execution is very bad. The Terra Nova colony is doomed to fail, because it's colonists have neither any frontier spirit, not much in the way of brains to make up for it.

    Yet, sometimes when stories and acting are bad, at least the design, props and special effects make up for it a little bit. This is not the case here, unfortunately. The visual impression suggests that someone went through the concept art trashcans of Jurassic Park, Avatar, Earth 2 and Lost, then picked all the worst pieces he could find and copy them badly.

    It is not a complete waste of time, but it is second to almost anything.
  14. Oct 25, 2011
    Pilot was weak, next episode was weaker and 5th episode into the season I'm starting to feel, that even special effects won't keep me from doing something else next time. For a serie this expensive, a remarkable failure.
  15. Feb 2, 2012
    I can't believe I ever gave this a 7. Awful show. It was bad in every way possible...I think the worst part of it all was this one scene in the season 1 finale where the villain pointlessly shot a vegetarian dinosaur. I can just imagine the moron who wrote that scene. "Duhhhh.,...vegetarian dinosaurs are...like...nice. they look so friendly eating their leaves. I hear people react to...like...bad stuff...let's have the villain shoot the vegetarian dinosaur. Yeah." Expand
  16. Oct 17, 2011
    Update to the first watch review. I have given up on this dreck. It was so promising, so many cool ideas. All of it wasted by terrible acting and terrible writing. The characters are all one dimensional, the actors don't look like they have the talent to pull of even one dimension of acting. Stephen Lang is wasted since they dumbed down his Quarittch character. The show itself seems like it went into shooting only a week after they pitched the concept with no though put into the actual story. Seriously the organizational chart on this show could've been made by a 5 year old. The effects are crap as is the art deco. Their is nothing good here except the concept. Don't waste your time on this. You want a show from Speilberg go watch Falling Skies. Expand
  17. Oct 14, 2011
    It was actually so bad I was laughing half the time! Wow what a waste of time. The first four hours of this show prove it to be shallow in plot and quality. The characters are again American cliche in what appears to be a soap opera remake of Avatar. There is no reasoning behind any of it. I am sure it in no way does the book plot justice. I wonder what drugs Spielberg was on when he was producing this crap. It's funny to note, those that liked "lost" rate this show. In conclusion it is proof American television has lost touch with intelligent viewers. BBC documentaries or Blade Runner any day! Expand
  18. Sep 26, 2011
    This is another disappointing show this season. I love dinosaurs and I love a hokey story but this is
    sterile. The characters are unlikeable - a cop that thumbs his nose at authority by having a third child? and then fails to protect the child? he is going to be the hero? doctor mom loves the hothead? what?

    The dinosaurs are just like in Jurassic Park- they do not have reality apart
    from the humans. Boring, boring, boring. Expand
  19. Sep 28, 2011
    craptastic. this is no battlestar galactica. this is no lost. or whatever reference or hope they had. silly acting and plot. amateurish special effects (if you can even call them that). not suprised, but disappointed.
  20. Oct 2, 2011
    I felt compelled to register and contribute a quick review for this show because I don't understand how a show this appallingly bad could garner positive reviews. I have only seen the first hour of the pilot in a preview at comic-con, and decided then and there that I did not need to see a single second more of this disaster. Between the mediocre special effects, boring and predictable story, wooden acting, and amazingly terrible dialogue, it's mind-boggling that the show made it off the cutting room floor, let alone to an actual premiere. The fact that it garnered applause at comic-con was totally surprising to me, but now I see that the general sci-fi TV watching public has their standards set so low that even this dreck is considered acceptable. You would think after having the pleasure of Battlestar Galactica, Firefly, Lost, Fringe and other such impressively written shows, they would have a better appreciation, but apparently not. Score is for the show and for those fans who actually enjoyed this. Expand
  21. Dec 20, 2011
    This is by far one of the worst sci-fi shows I've seen in a while. Bad stories, hollow characters and rip-offs of much better sci-fi shows and movies are only the beginning of this shows problems. There is little to no character development, romance subplots that are on par with Twilight, villains with motivations so cliche (or unexplained) that it unbearable, moments that would've had emotional weight if it wasn't for the characters lack of development of personality.
    The story arc is insultingly moronic, and there are moments that are so stupid that it makes me just toss a grenade in Brannon Braga's living room.
    There is nothing to see here. If you want a dose of dino action then watch the Jurassic Park movies, if you want human vs. human conflict then watch Jericho, and if you want a time travel adventure then watch Doctor Who.
  22. Jan 27, 2012
    Terrible terrible terrible. But I give it points for what it could have been, sans the script written by what seems like the folks from ABC Family. And it could have been so much more.
  23. Sep 27, 2011
    One can see the same crap on the sci-fi channel with better cheesy effects and the same stupid plot points! Is Spielberg afraid to show a man-eating dino killed by humans? Peter Jackson and James Cameron are better fantasy directors and producers! I'll try to stick with it, although it could get as boring and soap opera laden as Falling Skies!
  24. Oct 2, 2011
    Somehow a show about dystopian future-world politics, time travel and dinosaurs manages to insult my intelligence. Every once in a while there is an educational moment, but it comes from Steve Erkel character that every proceeds to roll their eyes at. I honestly find Storage Wars more intelligent than this show. They have to know this is going to be cancelled, they could at least have made it watchable for the few episodes it will be on the air. Expand
  25. Nov 1, 2011
    Poor special effects, you watch jurassic park then come to this and you will see the difference. Poor plot. Very predictable. Amnesia episode this early in the season?! are the writers struggling for ideas? whats next, a singing episode? annoying characters, cant stand the emo kid. Why did he hate his dad again? because he stuck up for his little sister? that makes no sense! basically go watch walking dead instead. That has characters you actually care for. Expand
  26. Dec 12, 2011
    I had my hopes up for this one but it really lacks any substance. This show isn't sure if it wants to be a family show or an adult drama but flails awkwardly in the middle. Poor writing and highly episodic content with very little to hook the viewer align perfectly with crude direction to result in trite disaster. As is often the case in new shows, it can take a while for the characters to gel. I doubt we'll ever see any cohesion from the characters in this show. Destined to a single season I'm afraid. Expand
  27. Dec 15, 2011
    I have grown up a sci-fi fan. So when I heard about this show, I was ecstatic. Dinosaurs, a hint of Earth 2, a whole new world to explore, what more could you ask for? After watching the first episode thru the current one apparently a lot more! (Yeah, yeah, I keep trying it, wishing for change, I'm hopeless)

    The lines are VERY bland, nothing intelligent, nothing interesting. It
    sometimes feels like some high school kids wrote and directed it. The mini "day to day" storylines are the same thing. And the BIG multi-arc "storyline" is so weak it could be nonexistant. Bad corporations from the future want to suck out the natural resources of this new planet. Ooooooh. So much drama.....

    The actors they chose fro this are very generic looking. I know they tried to actually add diversity to the main cast (the actors playing the mother, and both daughters have Indian ancestory), which is great. But for a multi million budget, they could'nt have found better actors?? They say their lines so glumly, as if they will suck the life out of television. Actors don't NEED to be good looking more than they need to have charisma, an onscreen persona. So far the Commander is the one with most charisma (and I hated his guts in Avatar).
    I wonder if this show can be saved? Explode Terra Nova, or maybe let dinosaurs eat everybody up. Then the next batch of explorers that come can be better cast. It is sad that they were trying to make a family friendly sci-fi and it fell flat. I love feel good shows, shows that show the bond/strength of family. But this thing just sucked.

    P.S It makes me miss Earth2, my heart was ripped out when super losers cancelled it. :(
  28. Dec 19, 2011
    The stunning visuals are not enough to distract my attention off of the horrendous writing and terrible acting with the exception of Stephen Lang(not great but decent enough to keep me from pulling my hair out while screaming at the screen). This show lacks the mystery that others of it's category have; shows such as "Lost" which had the bitter-sweetness of "leaving you hanging" at the end of the show. The fact that every unrealistic problem the writers create is resolved at the end of every episode is what is driving the audience away; an audience which is relatively small considering the shows budget. As of today the show has survived for one whole season, perhaps Fox will see their mistakes and fix them. The fix is simple new writers and casting auditions! Expand
  29. Nov 17, 2011
    The pilot was alright...ish...then the following episodes were so boring. I honestly don't care about the creatures of Pandora or wherever the hell they. I understand they're mean and vicious, they're dinosaurs. Geez mankind's last hope for survival wasted on father/son issues and a generic nerdy girl who's awkward about dating. I thought it'd be like Battlestar Galactica meets Jurassic Park. Lolol, no. Expand
  30. Oct 5, 2011
    So Spielberg! Very boring and politically correct, with a "Happy family" characters that was the sum of all stereotype in generalistic TVShow. Not to mention the lot of plot-hole and all the question that pops in your mind watching it (one for all: dad breaks from a maximum security prison and enter in another maximum security facility with no tool, no breather. And magically become the most bad-ass cop in the colony. Bah! Visual effect are simply embarassing. Another Falling Skies!! Expand

Generally favorable reviews - based on 28 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 28
  2. Negative: 1 out of 28
  1. Reviewed by: Matt Zoller Seitz
    Sep 28, 2011
    Nothing in this pilot is as compelling as the idea for the show, which begs philosophical and ethical questions that Spielberg and company (for now, at least) aren't interested in addressing.
  2. Reviewed by: Tom Gliatto
    Sep 27, 2011
    Even with Steven Spielberg listed among the executive producers, this distant world doesn't inspire much awe. [3 Oct 2011, p.45]
  3. Reviewed by: David Wiegand
    Sep 26, 2011
    The slowdown of the show's pace is one thing, but the real issue here is that the family element often feels inauthentic and just isn't up to the quality of the CGI-fueled action sequences.