In the first few moments of the first scene of FEARnet‘s latest original web series Stream, I expected Whoopi Goldberg to snap her fingers, smile, and start singing a tune tweaked with theocentric lyrics from the days when American Bandstand was relevant. The high ceilings, stained glass, vaulted windows, marble floors and overall ecclesiastical atmosphere of whatever New York City building her character Jodi Quinn is laboring through give the immediate impression that Sister Mary Clarence was back on the pulpit.

But then the flashback started…or is it flashfoward?

Due to complications from a drug she took when she was 17, “Jodi Quinn remembers the future.”

Physiologically, it looks a lot like how Ashton Kutcher’s character in The Butterfly Effect manipulates his past. Quinn seizes, and in the middle of epileptic thralls recollects past events or events yet to happen. It’s as if The Fates were drunk on ambrosia when they weaved the thread of Quinn’s life, crisscrossing moments and causing them to lose temporal significance.

The story of Stream flows back and forth “through three phases of Jodi’s life: her past as an intelligent but headstrong teen; her present in a psychiatric facility, and her future as an adult clinging to a normal life after years of tribulation.”

I’m not sure how much acting prowess it takes to appear like a post-op partial lobotomy patient, but Goldberg (who’s no stranger to sci-fi) plays the older, troubled and befuddled Quinn well. During the excellently edited, kinda freaky flashbacks/forwards that drive the action of the series, Quinn’s scared looks and silent pleas for help make you want to know the stories behind her visions and how the hell she ended up in such bad shape.

In addition to the appearance by Dominic Marcus, you can catch Ajay Naidu and a host of other film and television talent in the next five episodes of Stream released over the next five weeks. Contrary to the TV-14 warning, the series won’t make night lights a necessity, but the premiere just may intrigue you enough to tune into to see what happens next.

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