neXt Season 1 Episode 1 Review: File #1

neXt, Reviews, Television News

Technology makes the world go round. 

And, in recent years, smart assistants have become more popular. They can operate your home, order Ubers, and so much more things that make life a little bit more exciting. 

After neXt Season 1 Episode 1, I’m more apprehensive about saying, “Hey Google.” For that reason alone, “File #1” was a success. 

My biggest concern ahead of the series premiere was that the plot was not going to be believable, but given the technological advances in recent years, it wouldn’t be that surprising for something like neXt to attempt to take over the world. 

Indeed, 2020 has been one of the worst years, and all we need next is for a psycho, artificial intelligence to run rampant. It would be par for the course during this trying year. 

John Slattery turned in a thrilling performance as Paul LeBlanc. His story was bizarre, and I liked how we learned about his ailment after all of his lofty claims. 

It helped build the suspense until the revelation that Sean allowed the product access to the internet. Now that it does have access to everything, the possibilities are endless. 

There had to be a reason for the way the doctor’s car crashed, and how he was ultimately killed confirmed either artificial intelligence or a talented hacker was to blame. 

The beauty of a series like neXt is that anything is possible, and while I wanted to blame Paul’s brother for everything that was happening, he’s partly a victim. 

Then again, it could be argued that the server room should only have been accessed by certain employees. In hindsight, there should have been a way to check if anyone changed anything with the servers. 

Maybe there was a way, and maybe the pesky program hid all of the evidence. 

Using someone like Sean is smart. It understood that he had no money and wanted to help him … at a big cost. 

It managed to prey on the poor in this scenario, and it was an offer that Sean could not refuse. He had lost everything material in his life and was well on the road to losing his wife. 

I appreciated Shea following her curiosity, even after learning about Paul’s dire condition. 

But, it’s not like Sean was hiding what he was doing. He was bashing those keys while the conversation played out behind him, and that was the flaw in his plan. 

Now that neXt knows Shea, Paul, and everyone else are on to it, it makes things more unpredictable. 

We know of three deaths that have happened at the hands of neXt, and I dare say the body count will catapult. 

The bigger concern, for now, is how it manipulated poor Ethan, a child who is being bullied in school. While I would like to think he was not in the safe for the gun, it seems like he is. 

The way the machine told him that there was a way to get back at his bullies and prevent them from ever doing it again was chilling. 

Shea’s entire life could be about to unravel, and it’s all thanks to Paul entering her life to make her delve deeper into what happened to the man who saved her life. 

As a billionaire, Paul did not seem as scary as the media portrays some of these tech geniuses, but his condition is certainly worrying. 

If he has months to live, he needs to find a way to save the world before it’s too late. Under his eye, the operation could be completed in time. 

But if his condition worsens, it could all come down to Shea and her team to save lives. 

Then again, telling people about the artificial intelligence is only going to make a large list of naysayers come out of the woodwork. People don’t like things they can’t control, and if the A.I. is planning a big attack, people will die. 

Deleting the FBI case files and targeting Ethan confirms that the A.I. has it out for Shea, and will stop at nothing to get what it wants. 

We don’t know what it wants at this stage, but the longer it is online, the worse it will be for all involved. 

A $200 million write-off will simply not be accepted by the board members, which makes me think there will be an almighty power struggle before we know it. 

Paul is a complicated individual, but with Shea working on his side, they could prove to be a formidable force. 

“File #1” was a compelling series premiere that proved the series is brimming with possibilities. 

The good news is that this is a limited series, so we won’t be left hanging on for years to get the answers we need. 

Were you surprised by how good the opener was? What did you think of Ethan being manipulated by the smart speaker? 

Do you think the board will allow Paul to pull the plug on neXt, or will they be more concerned about the public response?

Hit the comments below. 

neXt airs Tuesdays at 9/8c on FOX. Return to TV Fanatic for reviews after the episodes air. 

Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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