'Under the Dome' makes strong summer debut
June 25th, 2013
03:00 PM ET

'Under the Dome' makes strong summer debut

CBS' adaptation of Stephen King's "Under the Dome" performed phenomenally for the network on Monday night.

According to CBS, the series pulled in 13.14 million viewers with its first episode, making it the most-watched summer drama premiere on any network since 1992.

The series, created by "Lost's" Brian K. Vaughn and produced by King, will stretch the story of a town cut off from the world by a mysterious dome-shaped force field across 13 episodes.

"It’s a potentially interesting way of dramatizing and heightening the state of small-town claustrophobia," says Time's TV critic James Poniewozik. "What if this little place, which seemed like the whole world, suddenly essentially became the entire world? Would your community become self-supporting or stifling? Would it be uplifting or a nightmare?"

But given King's mastery of storytelling, adapting his work is historically hit-or-miss. Even with the creator of the book involved, the premiere of "Under the Dome" suggested that the serialized version won't quite rise to the level of King's best-seller - yet that's not to say it doesn't still have plenty of redeeming qualities.

The first episode, says New York Magazine's Matt Zoller Seitz, seems to get King's style "on a primal level" - it's not "too artful" while maintaining an "air of menace," giving us a "promising" summer series.

USA Today's Robert Bianco agrees that the "claustrophobic tension" established at the start is "the main thing working in 'Dome's' favor ... Eventually, viewers will expect an explanation for the dome's appearance, but the series should be able to get along for some time without that, as long as the effects of the dome's arrival continue to play out as well as they do in the premiere."

The Los Angeles Times' Mary McNamara wasn't as impressed with "Dome's" pacing, as she reminds viewers that the best scary stories allow the suspense to build. In "Dome's" case, we get right to its existence and the townspeople's understanding that they're trapped all before the second episode.

"Every pilot is burdened with establishing character, jump-starting the narrative and hooking the audience, but 'Under the Dome' unnecessarily force-feeds us its first hour to its own detriment. What made King the master of his genre was patience and attention to detail ... order begins unraveling here at such a break-neck pace that it's swiftly predictable," she says.

Yet in the end, "There’s likely enough mythology here to keep viewers who enjoy theorizing satisfied all summer, while those looking for micro-level character-driven drama can find that in abundance as well," says the Daily Beast. "The show’s producers have wisely created a drama which functions on multiple levels ... 'Under the Dome' manages to be a domestic drama, a disaster film, and a horror-filled science-fiction tale rolled into one, with some romance, humor, and pathos thrown in for good measure."

If you were one of the 13 million who tuned in to "Under the Dome" last night, what'd you think?


Filed under: television

soundoff (77 Responses)
  1. Habit..she has a habit of not getting along with anyone and fights with everyone...just file whatever she does...

    -

    June 28, 2013 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Wha...

    sup?

    June 27, 2013 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse |
  3. 49sxwmesoon45cam

    hello

    June 26, 2013 at 8:32 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Andrew

    No explanation of where the dome came from. Heck, in an unrelated matter, I'm still trying to find out how their SUVs get to wherever they go in Criminal Minds. They always fly (Learjet, not C30 Transport) to and from their cases. So, how is it their vehicles are always wherever they are?

    June 26, 2013 at 6:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • jamesjanus

      You do know that the BAU is an FBI unit right? So they just use FBI SUV's that are waiting for them courtesy of the nearest field office.

      June 27, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jack

      I heard that they lash the SUV's to the wings of the plane...LOL

      June 28, 2013 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Eryk

    Personally the show had a outstanding start. Indeed, it was a big jump start into the story, yet if you really paid attention it only really started the back storys of a few of the characters as the characters who twist in the story with them. Don't know really how they are going to pull off another season when the book itself took place in a weeks time, Very intereasted in seeing how they stretch it out. It is all to flommoxing at the moment.

    _Eryk

    June 26, 2013 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
  6. sky's facts are usualy 1/2 assed-"proven"

    -

    June 26, 2013 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Whatever happened to SKY?

    I miss her FACTS and capslocked nonsense about demons and such. She's a treasure. I haven't read a post from her in over a week, it seems. :(

    June 26, 2013 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Nobody hates me sweetie...its only the 4 nimrods who don't know me...

    -

    June 26, 2013 at 3:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • don't call people 'sweetie' please...it's degrading

      as for 'nimrods'...that's kind of mean. What, are you a bully or something?

      June 26, 2013 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Social Security...

      she's the bully that's why we are in this mess.

      June 26, 2013 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
  9. ffej blew me a kiss from his truck this morning...how about you sweetie...nuttin.

    -

    June 26, 2013 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Lost again: Depression is a very serious thing...it affects your dressing, no makeup, sadness...you see its all her problem not ours

    -

    June 26, 2013 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  11. PRINT OUT ALL MY COMMENTS AND SAVE WITH ANNULMENT HACK CONFIRM HER ADOPTION COMMENT RAMPAGE..THANKS

    June 26, 2013 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Path

    I will be there too

    June 26, 2013 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
  13. I'm going back to Cali, Cali, Cali. I'm going back to Cali..

    hmm, I don't think so.

    June 26, 2013 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
  14. YOU HAVE REPUTATION FOR FIGHTING WITH EVERYONE, YOU DO NOT GET ALONG WITH ANYONE AND YOUR NOT GOOD AT IT.....WE FIGURED YOU OUT SO WE ARE MJUCH MORE WITTED THEN YOU ARE AND YOUR A HACK...

    YOUR A RIGGER WE ARE NOT

    June 26, 2013 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Are you talking for him again....we figured your 44, your have a reputation for being a bully, i don't.

    -

    June 26, 2013 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Your confidence is not that great...i see it.

    -

    June 26, 2013 at 2:53 pm | Report abuse |
  17. That's the unhappiness pouring out...its not me.

    -

    June 26, 2013 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
  18. WE ARE GOOD FOR TODAY...KEY ISSUES

    RH OBSESSION NOW
    ALL " RETRIEVED" INFO IS CRAP
    CANNOT FIGURE OUT IF A CALL IS FAKE....BUT ABLE TOO TELL ME WHO CALLS FROM MY PHONE PADS...
    HER HEARING LEVEL IS ALMOST OUT....

    June 26, 2013 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
  19. BROOKLYN, LONG ISLAND, JERSEY, FLORIDA

    PRINT.

    June 26, 2013 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse |
  20. married a cow

    PRETEND TO STAY AT TOPIC SO SHE LOOKS GOOD....PART OF THE CONTROL GARBAGE

    June 26, 2013 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Brian

    I thought it was alright. The highlight was the cow splitting in half. It was kinda predictable. I do like the premise though, so i'll DVR it next week. I didn't even know Stephen King had written it...lol

    June 26, 2013 at 2:14 pm | Report abuse |
  22. RECORDS OF LONG ISLAND ANNULLMENT--RECORDS OF ADOPTIONS--RECORDS OF ILLNESS IN FAMILY

    DAVID FROM TURNER...CONFERENCE CALL IN 1/2 HOUR CAN WE ARRANGE IT?

    June 26, 2013 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |
  23. THE TWISTING GAME...NOT HERE SWEETIE...GET DAVID ON THE LINE.

    -

    June 26, 2013 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  24. HOW DOES SHE KNOW WHAT'S ON EVERYONE'S PHONE PAD? OH YEA A HACKING HOE ON CNN

    June 26, 2013 at 1:30 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Reno

    I'm have to disagree with most of the comments on here. I thought the pilot episode was a perfect amount of suspense, action and mystery. I dont understand the comments about the show moving too fast, and the fact that the dome is already down in the first episode. How incredibly annoying it would be if they waited like 3 or 4 episodes. If you know something is going to happen then lets get the story moving. Lastly, to all the people whining about the show not following the book. Isn't that the point? Wouldn't you be incredibly bored to watch something , if you knew every single detail that was going to happen. One of the best parts of a story is the not knowing what will happen next. Please, do your selves a favor and forget the book, go into the story with an open mind and enjoy the crazy events that unfold. I think you might find your self a much happier person, then being so negative all the time.

    June 26, 2013 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Dan

    Nothing but the interactions between people and groups of people caught under the dome. When it becomes dry, they will throw in a bit of science fiction and government secrets to keep it rolling along. The best thing they could do is to have those stockpiled propane tanks to leak and then the entire place is blown off the face of the earth. This show is more mindless trash and no one will be a better person for having watched it.

    June 26, 2013 at 12:09 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Bluedestiny

    Strong writing and bite to the first episode. Very well done.

    June 26, 2013 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
  28. Dago T

    One episode, and I'm already "Lost."

    Get it?

    (tee hee)

    PS: If it's invisible, how do we know it's a dome? Could be a box!

    June 26, 2013 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
    • ryan

      It doesn't stay invisible for long, it holds stains and stuff, like the cow's blood and the scorch marks from the crashed airplane. Eventually there are fires and smoke inside the dome (I like how in the tv show they had all the fire trucks leave town before the dome appears) stain enough of it to see what it is.

      June 26, 2013 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Your initiation will never stop me....i'm the brightest thing he sees all day...even at 49 and chubby. get lost

      -

      June 26, 2013 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Your not chubby, b!tch...your a f-cking worthless fat ass...

      True story.

      June 26, 2013 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • No T--I am worth it your not happy...so its easy too degrade others when you feeling degraded...it doesnt' affect me

      -

      June 26, 2013 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • I am not degraded...nor am I degrading you...

      Just pointing out the facts: you are old (49), fat (not chubby) and on top of that, very slow-witted. Those are facts, not insults. You need to deal with that and make some changes so people don't hate you so much. You really are a hated person by many.

      June 26, 2013 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • I'm not slow witted..she has the bully reputation i don't...we figure you out ...we're not slow witted...your in hr we're not

      June 26, 2013 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • No, you don't have the bully reputation...you have the bimbo reputation

      old, fat, stupid bimbo - that's you alright. Does the truth hurt?

      June 26, 2013 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • No sweetie.....i'm not fat and there is man who wants me...not sure of course but he wants me...GET LOST

      -

      June 26, 2013 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • i am not hated by anyone and after the first time NOBODY is listening too you that's for sure..i live here i know who hates who...GET LOST HACK.

      -

      June 26, 2013 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Melody

    I am a Stephen King fan so the series got my attention from the beginning. But since the dome is now in place what else could happen that would be as exciting as the cow splitting in half. Who or what is responsible for the dome, aliens, God, Military???? So I guess I will have to keep watching.

    June 26, 2013 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
  30. David Thomas

    This show will fall the way of Terra Nava on FOX, big hype then pulled, why get wrapped up in a snow just to lose out to crap tv.

    June 26, 2013 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Bluedestiny

      Terra Nova was a series, whereas I thought this is a summer series, eg. mini series of a limited run. Not sure though.

      June 26, 2013 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
  31. good riddans---jeannie

    -

    June 26, 2013 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
  32. Louis Ville

    I was really looking forward to the premier episode. After watching every minute, I realized one is enough. Not a good program for the middle aged. We've been around too long, as has Stephen King's story lines. Signing Off.

    June 26, 2013 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
  33. ppehs

    I thought Under the Dome was action paced, intrigung, suspenseful & very compelling! and i am definitly looking forward to watching it..... Which leads me to mention another program that was packaged VERY POORLY and not given the HYPE that this show was given.........Zero Hour could have SOARED in the ratings if ABC & woud have had given rivieting reviews Zero Hour is also action packed suspensful and has all of the CAPTIVAING ingredients That makes a GREAT show! Zero Hour was cancelled but the remaining NEW episodes are shown on Saturday at 8:00 p.m. on ABC I would highly RECOMEND watching this great show. You can catch up by watching the beginning episodes on demand

    June 26, 2013 at 9:51 am | Report abuse |
  34. ppehs

    test

    June 26, 2013 at 9:31 am | Report abuse |
  35. Dennis

    I like the show but wondered why nobody tried digging underneath it.

    June 25, 2013 at 11:24 pm | Report abuse |
  36. Paul

    Another show with hype but it sucks....very slow, nothing makes sense at all and I won't be watching next week.

    June 25, 2013 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Jack

    As an ardent fan of Mr. Stephen King I can not believe this "series" was produced from his wonderful novel. Totally lacked the continuity of the story and the roles of the characters. "Barbie" kills and buries someone in the beginning of the story? Didn't happen...he didn't even have a car! I realize this show is adapted from the novel but at least make a better attempt at honoring the story and the author. Have a great day!

    June 25, 2013 at 5:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • pappop

      Jack, I agree with you. Barbie and Duke are good guys and Julia didn't have a husband, and wasn't new to the area and nobody noticed the propane tanks and on and on and on....So disappointed in this first episode. SK has said he is okay with the changes for the miniseries. So far, I am not!

      June 25, 2013 at 9:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • mommajam

      Agree totally...and...Junior killed that girl plus another, and Barbie had his own place so he wasn't at the house of the guy he murdered (but didn't in the book).....

      June 25, 2013 at 11:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • erendwolfe

      King is a producer and the writers ran all of the changes by him, including the revised ending which king loved, and thank god for that because the ending in the book was sudden and ridiculous with absolutely no closure. And sure they are putting a new spin on Barbie. so he is not the hard luck drifter that got in a bar fight with junior, I kind of like the spin that he may or may not still be working for the government. If you watch game of thrones and read the books, they are constantly changing things and it actually makes the show more interesting. So very little of kings books have made good movies/tv shows/miniseries. still waiting on the dark tower. you have to stick around for more than the first hour to be able to make a sound judgement on it.

      June 26, 2013 at 9:10 am | Report abuse |
    • wondawoman

      Thanks, I read the book and thought that was a change. Laughing at the posts saying what else could possible happen. Worried some people will be insulted though. (can't spoil)

      June 26, 2013 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Sherriesfaith

    So far it is nothing like the book. Number one Duke was a good man he was looking to jail big Jim not work with him or turn a blind eye to him. And Jr. didn't lock up the girl he killed her in the book. So far it is a joke. Will watch one or two more if it doesn't get any closer to the book I will just assume not watch no more. Stephen King is a master, why mess up his stuff?

    June 25, 2013 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • erendwolfe

      it's actually a lot like the book, for some reason you are overreacting.

      June 26, 2013 at 9:12 am | Report abuse |
  39. "lost"

    is another problem in productions...

    June 25, 2013 at 4:43 pm | Report abuse |
  40. boredumb

    I thought I'd give it a try but I won't be watching any more episodes. Too much silly drama. Just let me know what the dome is and I'll be fine with that. I tried watching "Lost" and I gave up on that too. That one started to suck way too much. More science and less stupidity, please.

    June 25, 2013 at 3:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • AD

      The dome is a metaphor for the stifling overreach of the Obama administration's burdensome regulations and government interference in our daily lives.

      June 25, 2013 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • being bored is another issue.

      -

      June 25, 2013 at 4:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • M.A.P.

      Sure thing, AD. I'm sure you conspiricy theorists can twist ANY film or series into a metaphor for Obamas evil helathcare reforms or more socialist muslim secret ideology. God you people annoy the $h!t out of me.

      June 26, 2013 at 3:35 am | Report abuse |
    • erendwolfe

      they tell you what the dome is in the first episode

      June 26, 2013 at 9:21 am | Report abuse |
    • NSanity

      @Ad You are incorrect and over reaching with your theory. Stephen King, himself, stated in an interview with Time magazine:

      "I was angry about incompetency. Obviously I'm on the left of center. I didn't believe there was justification for going into the war in Iraq. And it just seemed at the time, that in the wake of 9/11, the Bush Administration was like this angry kid walking down the street who couldn't find whoever sucker punched him, and so turned around and punched the first likely suspect. Sometimes the sublimely wrong people can be in power at a time when you really need the right people. I put a lot of that into the book. But when I started I said, "I want to use the Bush-Cheney dynamic for the people who are the leaders of this town." As a result, you have Big Jim Rennie, the villain of the piece. I got to like the other guy, Andy Sanders. He wasn't actively evil, he was just incompetent—which is how I always felt about George W. Bush. I enjoyed taking the Bush-Cheney dynamic and shrinking it to the small-town level. The last administration interested me because of the aura of fundamentalist religion that surrounded it and the rather amazing incompetency of those two top guys. I thought there is something blackly humorous in it. So in a sense, Under the Dome is an apocalyptic version of The Peter Principle."

      So nothing about Obama there.

      June 26, 2013 at 9:56 am | Report abuse |
    • joanna

      you said we checked it and it was true

      June 26, 2013 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
    • Sokman

      Imagine getting trapped under that dome with a bunch of filthy "knee grows". That alone would be nightmare enough to merit a whole separate Stephen King book.

      June 26, 2013 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
  41. palintwit

    I'd rather be locked inside a dome full of squeaking balloons than have to listen to Sarah Palin's shrieky, finger nails on a chalkboard voice.

    June 25, 2013 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Rosie

    That was 60 minutes of my life I will never get back!!!

    June 25, 2013 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse |
  43. Bluedestiny

    t00l

    June 26, 2013 at 11:42 am | Report abuse |
  44. kev66us1

    EVEN IF I HAVE TOO HEAD TOO NY BEFORE CALI...WE NEED TO STRUCTURE CLEARLY ON WHAT WE ARE SAYING....

    Let's start with a sentence that makes some sort of sense.

    June 26, 2013 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Translation from Troll-English to Human-English

    "I am a dumb-fcuking Troll with nothing better to do with my time than to pollute The Marquee Blogs with my nonsense. My Troll friends are just like me: fat, stupid and worthless. We plan to spread our stupidity from NY to CA in August."

    June 26, 2013 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |

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