Kyle XY: Season Three
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Kyle XY: Season Three

One of the greatest juggling acts possible occurs in trying to produce a television series. The people who take up the often thankless position of producer are faced with one inherently impossible task after another. For the series ‘Kyle XY’ the result was just one more name added to the regrettably ever growing list of shows that possessed outstanding potential but met with that dreaded cancellation before it had an opportunity to fully reach the audience it deserved. Although I admit that I was a fan of the series right from the start I could see the proverbial writing on the wall during that third season that would result in it being the end of the series. The basic premise was intriguing and could have been nurtured to grow towards any of several different directions. Here it was not so much on the writing, acting or direction that contributed to the untimely cancellation as much as it was in the choices made for the fundamental focus and subsequent marketing of the series that seemed to conspire against it. When it started the series was about a teenage boy found wandering through town, naked, no memory and most surprising, no belly button. Kyle (Matt Dallas) was a complete enigma especially to the Tragers, the family that took the boy in. the initial mysterious revolved around just what Kyle was; extraterrestrial or science experiment were to the front runner explanations. It is only natural that the writers would have to move on from that since the fan would quickly get to the point of demanding some answers. By the third season much of the founding mythos was laid down and new mysteries began to emerge. The troubles began to pile up when the new direction chosen included secret societies and covert conspiracies. When an attempt was made to blend these themes with tales of teen angst and hormonal upheaval and a clearly established narrative becomes an overly tangled quagmire.

The principle creators of the series were Eric Bress and J. Mackye Gruber who previously teamed up on ‘Final Destination 2’ and ‘Final Destination 2’. As it turns out both of these flicks examine the long debated quandary of pre-determination versus free will. In the case of Kyle we previously discovered that he was created by a secret cabal of radically forward thinking scientists in an attempt to bring our species to the next level of development. Since Kyle was the product of an advanced cloning and incubation experiment the question comes up in this season just how much influence does the genome of his progenitor Adam Baylin (J. Eddie Peck) determine who Kyle is and how much is from Kyle’s cumulative experiences. This dichotomy is examined against the backdrop of a ‘normal’ upscale high school. It is also where the season begins to derail. The series was broadcast through the ‘ABC Family’ network. This required the overall tone of the series to pander to the teen demographic by including many plot points revolving around budding teenage romance. Perhaps if the series was shown on SyFy and concentrated more on that aspect of the story it might have had a better chance to prosper. They still could have retained the ‘emo’ moments but it would have prevented what did happen; writing themselves into a corner.

In season two they introduced another experiment dubbed Jessi ‘XX Jaimie Alexander)’, who was created as the female counterpart. Initially she served as the moral contrast to Kyle with Jessi as innately a killer. In this season an unnecessary romantic triangle is created between Kyle, Jessi and his now steady girlfriend, Amanda Bloom (Kirsten Prout). This was played out by too many cross entanglements and shifting alliances that may somewhat realistically portray what teens can readily relate to but it comes across as a bit superfluous for an older audience. There was more than enough going on with Kyle playing a game of cat and mouse with the covert group, Latnok. Unfortunately Kyle’s best friend Declan McDonough (Chris Olivero) and the Trager kids, Lori (April Matson) and Josh (Jean-Luc Bilodeau)are relegated to become an ad-hoc ‘Scooby Gang’ while busily including all the constantly moving relationships. Of course there was a continuation of the consistently excellent writing which allowed the series to address real life issues of importance to the teens watching running the gamut of teens having sex to the same teens dealing with potentially terminal cancer. Much to their credit the themes were perfectly woven into the fabric of the main story arcs. Unlike other series for this demographic the parents are very much an active part of the kid’s lives. Mom Nicole (Marguerite MacIntyre) and dad Stephen (Bruce Thomas) are trying to be the best possible parent under the most abnormal circumstances imaginable. They are modern, progressive parents but are realistic. For example just before the promo Stephen has ‘the talk’ with Josh and provides him with condom for the big night with Josh’s new girlfriend Andy Jensen (Magda Apanowicz).

Even though the series was not given the support it should have received but it was better to pull the plug with this third season that to drag things out prolonging the ire of the fans. The DVD release does give s reasonable send off to the show with expository featurettes including a mini wrap-up.

- Kyle XY Future Revealed - The Essential Fan's Guide To Latnok Uncovers The Truth Behind Kyle And Jessi's Past And Offers A Glimpse Into Their Future
- Deleted Scenes
- Audio Commentaries - Featuring Writers And Executive Producers

Post 12/20/09

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