Rewind: ‘Roswell’ revisited

What was it about?

Roswell, New Mexico: home to one of the most famous UFO crashes of all time. Developed by Friday Night Lights exec Jason Katims from Melinda Metz’s Roswell High book series, Roswell took the idea of the crash and ran with it, but instead of going down a purely science fiction route, the makers focused more on their characters.

In 1999, schoolgirl Liz Parker discovers that three of her schoolmates, Max and Isabel Evans and Michael Guerin, are aliens – survivors of the 1947 crash. Cue the FBI trying to hunt them down, a local sheriff on the warpath, alien races coming from all sides and a jealous ex-boyfriend in tow.

Who was in it?

The biggest star to come from Roswell was Grey’s Anatomy actress Katherine Heigl (Isabel). Now a rom-com regular, Heigl often outshone her co-stars Shiri Appleby (Liz) and Colin Hanks (Alex), who was more recently seen playing a frankly chilling serial killer on Dexter.

Meanwhile, William Sadler (Sheriff Jim Valenti) – famed for his role as the Grim Reaper in the hit movie Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey – has since popped up in recurring roles in Fringe, The Pacific and Hawaii Five-0.

Best moment?

There are so many to choose from! What Roswell did best was not to cast aside the teenage angst and the character growth in the place of plot development or over-ambitous CGI effects.

If we had to choose a favourite, we’d go with the torture scene in Season 1. It looked brutal, and your heart really goes out to the character involved.

Last seen?

This is one of those shows that has that ‘ended too soon’ feel about it. Running for only three seasons, Roswell didn’t have time to grow stale, which perhaps we should be thankful for. Every episode was fresh and kept the show moving, with the show finale wrapping things up neater than the likes of The 4440 but still leaving viewers hungry for more.

The third season saw the small group narrowly escaping the FBI once again and leaving Roswell for adventures unknown.

The future?

While the show has been off-air for more than a decade, reappearing with occasional re-runs on E4, the following behind the small group of aliens and humans still keeps growing, maintaining a strong online presence. There has been some campaigns from the fan-base to revisit the series. Sadly, unlike similarly-cancelled shows Farscape, Futurama and Firefly, the Roswell fans haven’t had much luck.

If you’re looking for something sci-fi with a lot of heart, look no further than this old gem!

> Buy the Complete Series boxset on Amazon.

Do you miss Roswell? Let us know below…