Created by Peter Horton, Adam Armus and Kay Foster, American Odyssey is an action TV series which was first released in April 2015 on NBC. The series was initially supposed to be titled Odyssey, but a month or so before its premiere the network changed its mind and decided that the title American Odyssey is more suitable, as it “better reflects the journey undertaken by lead character Odelle.”
In case you are not familiar with the storyline, here’s a brief summary. The series revolves around previously mentioned protagonist Odelle (played by Anna Friel), a member of the U.S. Army, who begins an investigation with Peter Decker (played by Peter Facinelli) a lawyer, and Harrison Walters (Jake Robinson) a political activist. During their investigation, they discover the evidence of an international conspiracy. The series also stars Jim True-Frost who plays Odelle’s husband Ron Ballard, Elena Kampouris as Decker’s daughter Maya, Sadie Sink as Odelle and Ron’s daughter Suzanne, etc.
American Odyssey received mixed reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes, it has a rating of 50% and an average score of 7.1 out of 10, while on Metacritic it holds a score of 59 out of 100. The comments after the first couple of episodes were mostly negative. The Daily Telegraph’s Michael Hogan wrote: “The programme wasn’t without tense moments but the trouble was its scattergun plotting. It was like someone had cut up broadsheet newspapers from recent years and glued bits randomly to the script, making the whole thing lack cohesion.”
Some people thought it was no more than a bad replica of 2011’s series “Homeland.” This is how David Butcher (Radio Times) put it: “Parts of Odyssey may remind you dimly of Homeland. Its American network NBC probably hoped to create a down-and-dirty version of the Claire Danes thriller, but what we end up with is more Poundland than Homeland. It’s perfectly serviceable, undemanding drama, with a bit of (not nearly enough) action here and there. But Homeland it ain’t.”
Contrary to critics’ comments, the series was mostly well-received by the audience, but this was not enough. NBC eventually decided to cancel it after only one season.