The 4400: The Official Companion Seasons 1 and 2 (Anglais) Broché – 12 juin 2007
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One aspect that either wasn't covered or was barely touched upon was the political exploration of the show. In Seasons 1 and 2, The 4400 discusses issues of religion, identity politics among a minority, and the conflict between freedom and security. Just as with Ira Steven Behr's guidance of "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine," we increasingly find here serious and fair illustration of historical issues that have only come to the fore of the mainstream US media's focus (and only superficially so) in the post-9/11 world. There are certain thematic links between that pre-9/11 series and this one. Later seasons of The 4400 additionally delve into the nature and causes of terrorism, torture, religious fundamentalism, religious and political revolutionary movements (including rarely-expressed doubt among leaders), the complicated nature of faith (because religious motivations are always complemented by pragmatic concerns), and conflicting visions of the good society between socialist equality and hierarchical, unfettered capitalism. (I've written some Season 4 reviews on tv.com and other sites in an effort to bring to light these themes and connect them to historical and present-day issues.)
Unlike most TV fiction that formulaically posits a conflict between our absolutely good heroes and some inherent evil in "the other," The 4400 increasingly succeeds in mimicking the real world by avoiding absolutes; all the heroes are fallible, and all adversaries have the potential for kindness. It shows quite brilliantly that conflict comes from varying perceptions and interests and not between good and evil, as some world leaders would have us believe. It might be a good idea to explore the political nature of The 4400 in future guides, especially for Seasons 3 and 4, and -- hopefully -- seasons beyond.
It's definitely as much a testament to the show as to Mr. Erdmann's wonderful work that he has written a guide leaving me starving for even more insight into this dramatically-realistic and increasingly politically-insightful series.