Halo: First episode lands with mixed results

Fans of the Halo video game franchise have been waiting for a faithful television adaptation for a long time. This includes older fans like myself that have been playing this franchise for 20 years, and remember chaining XBoxes together with LAN cables to play the game with friends.

And here we are in 2022 with Halo premiering on Paramount Plus today and it was..

Just okay.

We arrive on the outpost of Madrigal with The Covenant Elites invading the area to find a mystical item. They’re intercepted by the mighty Spartans lead by Master Chief (Pablo Schreiber) and we get a battle that sees our heroes victorious but with only one human surviving the massacre. After the fight they recover an artifact that has a strange effect on Master Chief as he protects our lone survivor against all looming threats.

Listen, a Halo series is pretty high on the degree of difficulty scale. I’ll break it down through the good and the bad.

The Good: Master Chief looks alright. Schreiber personifies him well. Screen vet, Natasha McEhlhone as Dr. Halsey is also very good. The story moves along well. And I was never bored.

The Bad: The Covenant does not look good. They look pretty poor actually, and the combat we see between The Spartans and The Covenant wasn’t as strong as it should be, and this is a problem because, you know, it’s Halo.

And Master Chief took off his helmet. Master Chief isn’t supposed to do that. Not in the 20 years he’s been around and not ever if you ask a lot of fans. Here he does it straight away.

Ultimately, I’m going to stick with Halo for now. The mythology deserves that. And I recommend you watch the premiere. I’m a Halo snob, but if you’re looking for some heavily invested Sci-Fi action, it might be worth a look.


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