While I was doing research for my “Brilliant, But Cancelled: Single Season TV Shows” articles there was one show I kept thinking about. Point Pleasant was a supernatural series with a dash of melodrama sprinkled in that debuted on FOX in January of 2005 until its cancellation in March of the same year. The reason I did not include this in any previous article was because I wanted to watch it again to see if it was as good as I remembered it being. Or if it was another one of those shows that got justifiably axed from TV. So with over a decade since it initially debuted lets look back and see how it holds up.
There was a fascination in pop culture with religious iconography in the late 90’s and early '00s. Films like End of Days, Stigmata, and The Ninth Gate were being released in theaters and it was only a matter of time before it migrated over to TV. The show was created by John McLaughlin (who had previously written for the show Carnivale and that definitely had some influence on this series) and Marti Noxon (best known for her role as a writer and co-producer on the hit shows Buffy the Vampire Slayer and its spin-off Angel).
Basically, during a horrendous storm a young woman named Christina (Elisabeth Harnois) is seen floating in the ocean. Young lifeguard Jesse (Sam Page) rescues her and with nowhere else to go she it taken in by the Kramer family who is reeling from the lose of a sister/daughter and strange things begin to happen to Christina. Throw in a meddling half-demon who stirs up trouble (Grant Show) and the reveal that Christina is the Antichrist and everything gets crazier with each episode.
This was something I liked about the show. While some of the acting may not have been up to par it at least was entertaining. It was a smart move to have a show that revolved around both teenagers and their parents as it meant you could have fresh faces in the cast, but they had the support of veterans to help tell the story. I’ve got to give Elisabeth Harnois credit, she played the role of Christina fairly well making her sympathetic with an undercurrent of sinister. You truly see the struggle within her to fight against her destiny. I also enjoyed the sister dynamic Christina and Judy (Aubrey Dollar) had through the series. They built it up so well that to see it destroyed was genuinely sad.
Of the adult cast my favorite was always Amber Hargrove (Dina Meyer) as she was always underestimated due to her beauty, but she’s cunning and fights for what she wants. I also wanted to touch on another favorite character of mine, Father Tomas (Marcus Coloma). He gave the Christina a much needed ally in the struggle with her identity. What’s also great is seeing some actors before they hit it big. Aaron Paul of Breaking Bad fame pops up in a handful of episodes as a love interest for Judy. But hands down the best spot was Jon Hamm as a longed haired psychotic doctor. I had no idea who he was back then.
I’ve delved into some of the broad plot points, but lets get a little more specific. So the main crux of the story is Christina’s internal battle with the revelation that she is the daughter of Satan, but there are subplots galore. Judy losing a her sister Isabelle to suicide and her mother believed to be insane due to Isabelle’s ghost contacting her from the afterlife trying to warn of what’s ahead. The romantic relationship between Christina and Jesse and how it means more to the fate of humanity than either knows. Boyd’s backstory gets fleshed out and we discover what brought him down the path he took and how he’s seducing Terry (Brent Weber) to do the same thing. There’s also Christina’s search for her mother and the answers that quest might unlock. I’m not even gonna go into all of the adult’s subplots as there is so much to this story. I really enjoyed how they set up a lot in these thirteen episodes. It’s such a shame we never got a resolution to that cliffhanger of a finale.
I have to admit it was truly a lot of fun to dig through this series and rediscover a lot of great pieces. Does it hold up? For the most part I’d say yes, but I’ll forever be bugged by the lack of closure. I was also surprised by how for being made over ten years ago it didn’t feel terribly dated like some movies and TV shows. If you’re interested the show has been available on DVD since it’s cancellation, so you can rent it from Netflix or purchase it off Amazon. These are my thoughts, but as usual what are yours?