This review will not contain spoilers as it is my wish that anyone who has not had a chance to watch the Forever Finale to do so and to allow those watching in countries behind the US And Canada in the run, watch the episodes preceding without spoilers.
This last Blog of Season One is a tribute to the various parts that together have made the show the wondrous thing has been and a bid, one last time ; to "encourage" the Powers That Be at ABC to continue to carry the show into a second season.
Suffice to say the Finale was a continuation of the great writing we have come to expect from The Writing team. From the initial premise through to the final moments of the episode, the strength of that writing has been phenomenal. The plots for each individual episode, held together by the story arc that has kept fans talking, debating and discussing from the off and what better tribute to a writing team than the fact that their vision is not predictable or hackneyed and provokes and maintains viewer involvement?
It goes without saying that the performance of Ioan Gruffudd as the immortal Doctor Henry Morgan has been an irrefutable reason why Forever has garnered and maintained a loyal, dare I say fanatical base of viewership. Mr Gruffudd is one of those rare actors whose brilliance is his subtlety and genuine understanding of the complexities of the human condition. He does not ACT, rather he absorbs and then reflects out to the audience the emotion of his characters and in the case of Henry, he has had a whole treasure trove of emotions to raid.. Within a single scene he can be angry, sad and determined and each emotion is portrayed with such authenticity that Ioan fades and poor, troubled, brave, loving Henry is all we see.
I would also like to to take this opportunity to actually thank Ioan for his unfailing dedication to the show, it may not be immediately obvious to the casual onlooker, that to carry a show with such intense scripting, monologues and almost present in every scene, takes a massive amount of time both in front of and away from the cameras to make Henry so important to us week after week.
No man is an island and the ensemble cast that rounds out the programme is no short of perfection, I doubt any regular viewer could imagine anyone else playing Abe or Jo, no one else could have the comedic timing of Lucas or Hanson or the calm authority of Lt Reece... Where these roles could have fallen into tropes with great ease, here, the brilliant casting makes them more like familiar friends than characters.
All are superb, but for me special mentions have to be given to the incomparable Judd Hirsch whose warm and clever portrayal of the complex Son / Father relationship at the core of the show has been nothing short of mesmerising. Abe is always present at the most heartwarming and emotionally wrenching moments and I cannot express how much watching Ioan and he interact has been a veritable treat.
Similarly Joel David Moore has been a massively important addition, bringing Henry down to our level after centuries of sequestering himself behind his death research and mourning for a soulmate whom he never knew the fate of... It was the respect and sometimes fawning adoration that gently and gradually brought the supreme experience and intellect of Dr M down into our sphere and the genuine affection they have for each other was beautifully and subtlety brought to bear in the finale .
I have spoken often of my enjoyment of Mike Hanson's light envy and general bemusement at Henry's more brilliant moments, but in fact it is the loyalty, the friendship, the fun of the character that has made Donnie Keshawarz a firm fan favourite.
So what do we have ? A clever show that does not talk down to its audience, a cast perfectly fitted to their roles and a NYC setting that is an embellishment to plots both in present day and in the brilliant flashbacks... The only reason this show has not been massively present on the TV radar this past few months is poor handling by ABC.
Breaks in schedule have prevented a flow to the narrative that is so important in a show of this type, a lack of truly discernible promotion and a questionable timeslot have hindered the show when it should have been lauded, respected and shouted about from every hill.
LUCKILY for ABC there has been a troupe of vocal, dedicated and slightly crazy fans marshalling the troops and creating the buzz that the network should have done and to every person who sent a letter, tweeted or commented on Forever sites I say Thank you, you are fabulous human beings! Do not stop now, Never give up, Never give in , #RenewForever!
All they and by association I, ask is for a second Season of the show we love. A simple request that only requires one answer to this burning question...
Will Henry live on?
The answer is, that in our hearts, he will Forever, let's hope ABC catches up!
This additional comment comes after Forever has been aired in it's entirety in the USA, CANADA and the UK...
After cancellation rumours and THAT LETTER from Ioan, I have been deeply affected by the passionate refusal by old comrades and new to get Forever on a platform where we can see more of Henry and the gang.
I am proud of you all and hope that together we can get Forever the place on our screens it deserves!!
Keep up the good work!!!