Sky 1


Sinbad - Elliott Knight

Gunnar - Elliot Cowan

Rina - Marama Corlett

Anwar - Dimitri Leonidas

Nala - Estella Daniels

Cook - Junix Inocian

Akbari - Naveen Andrews

Taryn - Orla Brady

Legend Of The Seeker
Jason And The Argonauts
Sword Of Xanten
Tin Man

Episode 1 - first shown July 8th 2012

Sinbad is not having a good day. A bare-knuckle boxing scam goes bad, leaving the nephew of the Caliph dead. Marked for death and cursed to boot, Sinbad has to find a way out of the city, and fast, if he is to keep his head.

Sky One's new home-grown production certainly looks the part in this opening episode with sweeping vistas over the city of Basra, but you would be forgiven for thinking that you had tuned to the wrong channel and were watching the story of Aladdin. Sinbad is a street con-artist, a diamond in the rough if you will. When the guards appear there is a rooftop chase with close escapes. All it needs a blue singing genie.

It starts off bright and breezy and fun, but then goes quite dark with some turns that are not expected and give the story some real bite. Before you know it, Sinbad's on a boat sailing away, but trouble is still close behind, not least in the shape of a very impressive CGI water dragon thing, the presence of which is never really explained.

Elliott Knight is charismatic enough as the eponymous hero, but none of his future shipmates make much of an impact. Then again, they aren't really given enough screen time. Naveen Andrews gives his grief-stricken villain perhaps more depth and reality than he actually needs, but that ups the threat ante.

The turn of fate that leaves Sinbad as the master of his own ship are pretty hard to swallow, but the origin story is over and now we can see where this quest is going to take us.


Episode 2 - first shown July 15th 2012

The rag-tag crew set ashore an apparently deserted island and find themselves the prisoner of a tribe of cannibals. Only Sinbad's attraction for the female leader of the clan offers any hope of escape.

The first episode proper of the show now that the origin story is over and it seems that SINBAD is going to be happy going for a more talky, philosophical approach to its situations. There is a CGI Roc cooped up in the queen's chamber, but it is obvious exactly how it's all going to pan out long before the end and almost nothing is unpredictable.

Still, the verbal sparring between Sinbad and the queen is nicely played and quite fizzy. If only there had been more to back it up.


Episode 3 - first shown July 22nd 2012

The crew lose their ship in a bet and are forced to go into the House of Games where Sinbad has to undergo an ever-more-dangerous set of bets if anyone is going to get out alive.

There's a good idea here somewhere, but it doesn't quite come off. The main problem is the Iain McKee play the twins in charge of the supernatural casino as some demented version of Jedward. This kills the threat immediately and what we're left with is really rather ... dull.

It's also the second episode in a row that has used Sinbad's choking necklace as the main source of tension as time ticks down to sunrise. That's a plot device that already shows signs of being overused.


Episode 4 - first shown July 29th 2012

The ship is becalmed in strange waters full of dead fish. Sinbad rescues a strange old man from a mysterious ship of the dead, a strange man who seems to have business with Nala.

This episode eschews CGI special effects monsters and goes for a slow creeping atmosphere of dread. Unfortunately, it misses completely and ends up with a slow creeping atmosphere of boredom. Nothing much happens and it all hangs on Timothy Spall's ability to be creepy and sinister. Well, he's got the creepy off, but the sinister never quite happens.

It might all have been saved by a great climax, but it fudges even that.


Episode 5 - first shown August 5th 2012

Akbari's pet witch sets after Sinbad with a salt monster whilst Gunnar is faced by a tribe of ninja judges determined to make him pay for his past crimes.

After Nala's past coming back to bite the crew, we get Gunnar's. There are no surprises in what is revealed about him, only that his apparent reformation changes the judges' verdict and sentence in moments. It's hardly believable, but far more believable that Sinbad being able to rid himself of hate and anger in a single deep breath.

The interplay between the characters is a bit more fun and there is much more Orla Brady, which can only be a good thing, but it is still too slight and too predictable to excite.


Episode 6 - first shown August 12th 2012

Whilst repairing the the ship, Sinbad is taken by a sea creature, but awakens in the arms of a lovely girl. She seems intent on asking him about his past, something that he finds harder and harder to recall.

The truth about the girl is obvious from early on, as is what she is doing. There are some nifty ghosts, but nothing much is done with them and there isn't a whole lot to keep the attention focussed.


Episode 7 - first shown August 19th 2012

Sinbad returns to Basra to rescue his grandmother from the clutches of Akbari's witch, but who is the real enemy?

The Sinbad/Akbari storyline plays out here to its conclusion and there are a few minor surprises along the way, but there is also too much that is predictable and a few bits that are wholly unnecessary, such as Anwar's visit to his parents.

Making Basra an abandoned city works in terms of the budget, but it does undercut the scale and makes Akbari's coronation look ridiculous.

Sinbad's curse is lifted, but he is given some information that sets him up as being far more than portrayed to this point. It's a clever move to make the show more significant than just the tale of a thief on the run.


Episode 8 - first shown August 26th 2012

Anwar discovers a box containing a girl who claims to be a god. She is being hunted by some soldiers who will stop at nothing to get her back. Is Anwar the coward he believes himself to be.

Another person encountered who turns out not to be who they appear to be. Unfortunately, this one is as dull and uninteresting as the mermaid was. Considering that she's a god, she really ought to have been much more fun than this.

The outcome is obvious and never in doubt and there really isn't that much fun getting there, even with a big action showdown.


Episode 9 - first shown September 2nd 2012

Sinbad goes after a crystal that can tell his future despite the fact that it lies at the heart of a deadly labyrinth and he is being stalked by a woman who stole Indiana Jones' hat.

There is so much about this plot that is tired and overused that it is hard to know where to begin. OK, let's start with the angry son/disappointed father relationship at the heart of it, a relationship that makes the eventual outcome of the plot all too obvious.

The labyrinth is supposed to be full of deadly traps and yet we see only one and it is circumvented by simply being knocked over fast. Hardly impressive stuff.


Episode 10 - first shown September 9th 2012

The crew take aboard a scientist and her giant egg for a voyage to an uninhabited island, but is she all that she seems and what is inside the egg?

What's inside the egg is all that matters, but the storyline cleverly keeps the answer a while coming, maintaining interest. Once the truth is revealed, it's just another monster hunt scenario borrowing scenes from ALIEN and still managing to be only mildly diverting.






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