Soapy ‘Containment’ is Predictable but Still Watchable

Review of the limited series "Containment."
David Gyasi as Major Lex Carnahan (The CW)
The CW’s new limited series, Containment, may not be the best written show on the air, but like a popular paperback novel, it is a page-turner. Despite its grim premise, the show is more soapy than it should be and is full of clichés. Still, the timing of the show with the rise of the real life Zika Virus scare, makes for an interesting if not uncomfortable, viewing experience.

Centered at a hospital in Atlanta, Georgia, Containment is based on the Belgian series, Cordon. The 13-week series focuses on two micro worlds: those held in a locked down hospital and the city that surrounds it. After a mysterious sick patient comes to the hospital for help, it becomes clear that he is infected with a deadly virus, but before they can contain him, he has left the hospital and will most likely affect others on the outside. Meanwhile, those on the inside of the hospital are cut off from the rest of the world until the staff can figure out what it is that they are dealing with. This group includes an elementary school teacher Katie Frank (Kristie Gutoskie) who had brought a group of kids to sing to the elderly patients there. Conveniently, the single mother is there with her own son. Ironically, the school bus driver is also there with his daughter. Katie will probably be okay though as police officer Jake Riley (Chris Wood), who is also single, seems to have taken an interest in her. These two will definitely hook up.

On the outside is Dr. Sabine Lommers (Claudia Black) who has been called in to help with managing the crisis. She assures people that the lock down will be only a temporary 48 hours stint; just a minor inconvenience she says, but you already know that it’s going take longer. She relies heavily on police officer Lex Carnahan (David Gyasi) who is pouting that his girlfriend is afraid to move in with him. (Perhaps he should have tried a wedding proposal?) Carnahan just isn’t in the mood for deadly virus.

Containment also features the obligatory 8-month pregnant woman Teresa Keaton (Hanna Mangan Lawrence) and Leo Greene (Trevor St. John), a reporter who uncovers a conspiracy theory.

Even with the show’s familiar troupes, tonight’s pilot episode still seems too short as the story hooks you in. The series’ creators stress that there is hope though and says that unlikely heroes will rise to the top and who doesn’t love an underdog? It will be interesting to see how this all shakes up.

Containment airs on Tuesdays at 9:00 p.m. on the CW.

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