The CW’s new show, Roswell, New Mexico, based off the books “Roswell High” by Melinda Metz premiered on Tuesday night. The show, which promised to separate itself from the previous beloved series Roswell which aired in 1999-2002, was created, written, and produced by Carina Adly Mackenzie, and executive produced by Julie Plec (The Vampire Diaries). Plec also directed the first episode.
Beware: There are spoilers below of the first episode!
The show pleasantly surprised me. We got introduced right away to Liz Ortecho (Jeanine Mason), who plays a lovable and relatable Liz, as she returns home to Roswell. After being stopped at a checkpoint, she runs into Max (Nathan Parsons), a cop, who Liz has a past with (and we start to piece more of that together later in the show.)
Liz goes to her father’s restaurant, where she starts working. Max arrives, and gunfire erupts as bullets are shot through the window and Liz is hit by one, with blood immediately pouring out of her. In a rash decision, we see here that Max resurrects her, effectively blowing out all electricity. As Liz starts to wake up, Max pours ketchup on her, to mask the blood and make her believe she wasn’t shot. He quickly leaves, leaving Liz with a lot of questions.
He telepathically calls Isobel (Lily Cowles) after he leaves, because how weak he is after resurrecting Liz. Isobel finds him, and makes him drink nail polish remover, which helps heal Max. We later are introduced to Michael (Michael Vlamis), who is in jail, and he has a tense conversation with Max and Isobel about keeping their secret.
Liz later discovers that she has a mark where she was shot, and goes to the hospital to get checked out by Kyle (Michael Trevino). Liz tries to get Max to talk to her, because she knows something is off and believes she got shot; but is otherwise thinking that she’s crazy. In a last attempt, Liz gives Max a milkshake, shares a story about her mother and sister and Max almost tells Liz right there what happened. Michael is watching them, and blows out a car’s windows to distract Max. Liz takes the opportunity to grab the cup that Max was using, and we later see her checking his DNA under a microscope – seeing something unusual and glowing.
We also see Liz in a car making out with Kyle, and Kyle asks, “What is that?!” referring to Liz’s chest. Liz later reveals that it’s a handprint, right where the bullet hole was – glowing. She finally confronts Max, and Max comes clean to Liz, showing her the pods that he, Isobel and Michael were in before being released from them in 1997. The conversation shifts romantically, where Max tells Liz he would have followed her after she left the area after high school, and because of the handprint, we get to see a really sweet montage of the two sharing moments as they grew up together. Max tells Liz that she’s only feeling an “echo” of what he feels for her, and because of the handprint he’s allowed to share those memories. Liz asks how long the handprint will be there, and Max says only a few weeks – to which Liz states, “I’ll kiss you after that.”
We also see during a reunion that there’s quite a history between him and Alex Manes (Tyler Blackburn) – making it completely different than the original, but an awesome breath of fresh air. On the flip side, Kyle contacts Jesse Manes (Trevor St. John) about the handprint, saying he was told by his father to contact Manes if he ever saw a handprint like the one Liz had.
Overall, I just can’t wait to gush about this show. The casting is great and you really have to separate yourself from the original and love this show for what it is. Jeanine is sweet, and comes across as relatable and a character you love right off the bat. Nathan, at this moment, is probably my favorite actor on the show – his acting comes off as genuine and endearing – and I even get some Milo Ventimiglia vibes from him with his mannerisms and voice.
Michael, Lily, Tyler – all give a great addition to the show. There’s not a bad piece of casting here. The pilot set up for a great rest of the season in which I’m eagerly awaiting to see what happens next week, and the weeks after that. With the story, the music to go with it, this is easily the best pilot I’ve seen of the 2018-2019 season – and easily the best “reboot” of a show that’s been done, and we’ve only see the first episode. It’s the first show in a long time that I’m genuinely excited about, and I just can’t wait to see more.