There is no doubt about it, Aftermath manages, in its first ever episode to completely unsettle the viewer. “RVL 6768” brings the audience in as things start going really wrong. This “End of Days” scenario features meteors, a plague, earthquakes, a category five hurricane and some sort of body inhabiting demons.
On top of all this it is raining fish, snakes, and at one point, parts of a car (RVL 6768). As Joshua mentions later in the episode, it all seems a bit biblical.
Aftermath starts with Joshua at work busily gathering things up to take home. The professor is, along with everyone else, vacating the place to take cover with his family.
Karen is at home with the kids cleaning up from the latest storm. Joshua arrives and a local policeman stops by. He wants the family to keep an eye out for a relative who is camping nearby. The car registration is RVL 6768.
The officer has a passenger in the car and he tells the family that cops killed his brother. The man was skinning his wife alive and would not stop.
Brianna relates that a friend in New York told her that faces are looking in high rise windows and that apparitions are flying around.
The family sit down to eat and the cop’s nephew comes to the door asking for help. They let the young man in and after ravenously devouring all the food in his reach he attacks the family.
He is shot dead by Matt and as he slumps to the ground something “flies” out of his body. Karen goes to report the shooting to the police and finds a shotgun and two crazy prisoners.
The police are missing.
Later, Brianna is grabbed by another young man who carries her away by taking to the air. The teenager screams all the way up and away. The family gather things up and take the Winnebago to find Brianna.
The kidnapped teen is able to get away when the man dies. She is picked up by Sheriff Dawkins. The cop knows her father but even though he saw Brianna recently, he does not recognize her. The policeman and his partner stop at a diner. A group of bikers are making huevos rancheros and the two cops decide to kill everyone inside.
The bikers kill the officers and spare Brianna as she is not bleeding from her mouth. (A sign of the fever.) She talks the leader into taking her to Yakima where her family is.
The Copeland’s all meet up at the safe zone, Brianna is at the north entrance and her family are at the opposite end. As she prepares to enter the town limits a huge meteor hits the place and Brianna narrowly avoids being burnt to a crisp.
As things continue to get worse, the Copeland’s, sans Brianna, hear the sound of trumpets, something that Joshua and Karen talk about earlier. After Joshua’s bible quite they state that the horns would accompany the end of days. She tells everyone to say nothing.
Show creators Glenn Davis and William Laurin have given the viewer a world falling to pieces. While the planet is busily shaking itself to bits, storms, meteors and “demonic” creatures are laying waste to the rest of the world.
Heche is impressive as the no-nonsense former Air Force, gun-toting wife and mother. Tupper is spot on as the academic who follows his wife’s lead.
Taylor Hickson, Levi Meaden and Julia Sarah Stone are nigh on perfect as the Copeland kids. Kudos to Jason Gray-Stanford as Sheriff Earl Dawkins. He makes his character truly bizarre and at one point rather poignant.
This is a show that could give the audience nightmares, or have them running for the nearest bible. Regardless of either choice this is disturbing television with an edge that resonates.
Aftermath airs Tuesdays on SyFy.