I felt the first season was very much one of those nice, bright coloured, uncomplicated shows that you switch on the TV on a decompress to before you watch something with some depth. I don’t think I’d pay 3 dollars for each episode if I’m truly honest, it is much closer to the negative posts about it and the humour, however it did start to add some weight as it went on, mainly I felt to the Bortus character and his species.
The first episode of the new season was so bad I wasn’t sure if it watch it again. Half way through the second I was feeling the same even despite it being Bortus centric. But something happened halfway through - the conversations and stakes started to feel much stronger. I thought I would hate the third episode of Season 2 seeing the trailer for it and then again, in the second half I was sucked in and thought it was brilliantly written plot and storywise for a story of the week show. I’ve thought the story telling is much better in season 2 after the horrible first episode.
The Orville’s main problem is also it’s saving grace. It’s not trying to contend with TV like Star Trek Discovery or GOT, it’s simply trying to be a fun little sci-fi-for-everyone show that plays with ideas a Trek audience would be used to.
It’s clearly not for everyone and as I’ve said here the character work leaves a lot to be desired, but you should check out the whole of episode 2 of the second season to see what I mean.
It’s really throwaway TV, personally I like that now and again because every show these days is trying so hard to be the next GOT or Breaking Bad. That’s obviously great because the quality is so good, but I do love having something that’s just bright sci-fi colours you can completely switch off to, I think there’s room for it.