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The Orville - (S01E02)


When Ed and Kelly are tricked by a hologram of a ship in distress and find themselves prisoners in a replica of their former home, Alara must step up in her first command of the Orville and attempt a heroic rescue. Meanwhile, Bortus and Klyden receive some happy, yet unexpected news.

Episode Title: Command Performance
Airs: 2017-09-17 at 20:00
  • Terry Terrones

    While the series is initially disjointed, by episode three I had gained some insight into what MacFarlane was striving for with The Orville.

    Colorado Springs Gazette Full Review
  • Rob Owen

    It mostly plays like an unproduced early 1990s “Star Trek” spinoff, complete with holodecks, replicators, alien crew members and missions of the week. It’s also pretty dull.

    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Full Review
  • Michael Starr

    It’s got top-notch special effects and terrific makeup (for its space-alien characters). But it just doesn’t quite gel. At least not yet, anyway.

    New York Post Full Review
  • Matt Roush

    The show's smirky tone, embodied in MacFarlane's smug frat-boy demeanor as the captain, never quite gels with the universal humanism the episode is aiming for. [18 Sep - 1 Oct 2017, p.27]

    TV Guide Magazine Full Review
  • Rob Lowman

    The humor is more throwaway and often falls flat while a lot of the drama can become stiffly serious. It’s not that the series is badly made. The action and effects are decent. The cast is fine, though the characters are still mostly unformed. ... Viewers may find the tone of series perplexing.

    Los Angeles Daily News Full Review
  • Ed Bark

    The Orville needs considerable work to accomplish whatever it wants to be--assuming that MacFarlane and company even have that answer. For now it’s boldly but very unsteadily going forth, with its jokes working here and there while the action and “messages” bump along at best.

    Uncle Barky Full Review
  • Verne Gay

    The outcome is an ersatz facsimile of the original “Trek” and a couple of spinoffs. Their heart and overall spirit are present, along with some decent special effects. The dumb jokes and ham-fisted setup lines just tend to diminish them.

    Newsday Full Review
  • Dan Fienberg

    The retro-futuristic effects in The Orville work well, and the show looks like it cost Fox a fair amount of money. Whether viewers will respond to sincerity and professionalism, but limited mirth and very few thrills, when they've been promised Seth MacFarlane hilarity remains to be seen.

    The Hollywood Reporter Full Review
  • Erik Adams

    What results is a show that isn’t so much daring in its flexibility as it is exhausting in its lack of cohesion. The pilot trudges through scene after scene of setup, and subsequent episodes don’t get much peppier.

    The A.V. Club Full Review
  • Mike Hale

    The Orville seems to be less about comedy or science-fiction than about Ed Mercer’s middle-age angst, expressed primarily through his peevish anger toward his ex-wife.

    The New York Times Full Review
  • Brian Lowry

    While The Orville clearly demonstrates its fondness for a show that promised to boldly go where others hadn't, it feels like MacFarlane and his crew are taking a sizable step backwards.

    CNN Full Review
  • Ken Tucker

    Except for Norm Macdonald as the voice of an alien made of what looked like quivering gelatin, I didn’t find much that was amusing about The Orville’s space odyssey. ... From its opening scene with Victor Garber assigning Ed his ship to the final, unsuspenseful shootout with alien enemies, The Orville moved from one lull to another.

    Yahoo TV Full Review
  • Caroline Framke

    It’s almost impossible to know whether there are too many jokes in The Orville or too few, both because the show doesn’t seem at all confident in whether it should even be making jokes at all, and because the jokes that are in the show are bad. Full Review
  • Liz Shannon Miller

    The lack of creativity is clear, given how it takes the basic framework of a “Trek” series and files off the serial numbers. But morally, it’s hard to imagine how anyone involved with this project could be comfortable with walking onto that set, watching those episodes, and seeing how blatant the imitation is.

    Indiewire Full Review
  • David Wiegand

    At times, Orville feels like an uncomplicated paean to the original “Star Trek.” There are a few moments of humor, but they feel half-hearted, almost as though someone said, “Hey, you created ‘Family Guy.’ Write something funny.” At other times, the show wants to make social commentary.

    San Francisco Chronicle Full Review
  • Dave Nemetz

    The Orville feels like a vanity project, plain and simple, and while it might be fun for MacFarlane to run around shooting phasers and playing Captain Kirk, it’s not much fun to watch. Because it doesn’t work as comedy. It doesn’t work as sci-fi. It just doesn’t work at all.

    TVLine Full Review
  • Chris Cabin

    By playing it safe and showing a truly breathtaking lack of creativity, The Orville can’t even claim to be better than the myriad of Star Trek fan films that can currently be found on YouTube.

    Collider Full Review
  • Alan Sepinwall

    Virtually every joke in The Orville is out on an island. At times, it’s not even clear what the joke is meant to be, but simply that there is one. And while it’s a relief that Palicki isn’t playing the disapproving woman who rolls her eyes at the naughty dude at the center of the story, none of the writers seem to know what to do with her, either.

    UPROXX Full Review
  • Kelly Lawler

    There are too few jokes for it to truly feel like a comedy (despite appearing that way in early promos), but attempts at humor muddy the series' ambitions as a pure sci-fi adventure. By flirting with two genres, MacFarlane has created a messy series that lacks focus.

    USA Today Full Review
  • Hank Stuever

    The show is an airless vacuum, with only a few nominal attempts at ironic wit.

    Washington Post Full Review
  • Maureen Ryan

    An air of self-congratulation hangs over the entire hour, as if MacFarlane, who wrote it, couldn’t get over his awe at his own bravery in engaging with a difficult, complex topic.

    Variety Full Review