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September 26, 2011 | By Mary McNamara, Los Angeles Times Television Critic
Easily the most exciting show of the fall season, Fox's "Terra Nova" has such obvious, instant and demographically diverse appeal — sci-fi fans, fantasy fans, 5-year-olds, 50-year-olds, Al Gore — that you have to wonder why no one thought of it before. Perhaps because headlining executive producer Steven Spielberg was occupied with other projects, or perhaps because as simple as the concept seems — "Lost in Space" meets just plain "Lost" plus dinosaurs — it isn't really. Not at all. Part post-apocalyptic epic, part family drama, part monster-thriller, the two-hour premiere of "Terra Nova" manages to introduce a panoply of narrative threads and themes while telling a remarkably clean story, both in terms of plot line and tone; "Terra Nova" is whole-family friendly.
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