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The Pretender
The Pretender (1996-2000):
IMDB Listing
Steven Long Mitchell
Craig Van Sickle

Michael T. Weiss
Andrea Parker
Patrick Bauchau
Jon Gries
Harve Presnell
Jamie Denton
Richard Marcus
... Creator
... Creator

... Jarod
... Miss Parker
... Sydney
... Broots
... Mr. Parker
... Mr. Lyle
... Dr. Raines

The only major broadcast network during the late 1980's and early 1990's that was willing to stick with science ficiton was NBC. First, it aired Quantum Leap, then it aired Seaquest (it was probably too patient with that one), and then it aired The Pretender. Fox and the startups UPN and the WB now are where science fiction, bearable and very bad.

The Pretender is about a genius named Jarod, who after twenty (or is it, thirty) years of captivity at The Centre escapes. Jarod hasn't been a part of the outside world since he was a boy, so he constantly experiences every day things with a childlike innocence. Jarod sees life in black and white. Most episodes have Jarod helping fix injustices while searching for his past and his family. Jarod has to do all this without getting caught by agents of The Centre.

The final part of the formula developed back at The Centre. Instead of merely having a stream of nameless heavies pursue Jarod every week, the writers developed major characters and intrigue at The Centre itself. As the series moved on, Miss Parker and her cronies were fleshed out and some episodes focused on them, rather than Jarod. What started out as a twist on The Fugitive with a bit of MacGyver has added the conspiracies (minus the aliens) of an X-Files to create a must-watch series.

Absolut Paradigm

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