* * * B
Absentia is a Prime series revolving around FBI agent Emily Byrne (Stana Katic) who, after being abducted and presumed dead, returns after 6 years. All three seasons are good. The first revolves around Emily’s search for her abductor. The second moves on to the backstory of why she was abducted in the first place, and focuses on her son Flynn. The third season’s long arching plot does tie back to the first to, but is more stand alone, involving organ transplants and a weaponized virus.
The plot is clever, and keeps you guessing, with many twists and turns. Emily is well characterized as a damaged and almost psychotically dogged person. Her father is perfectly acted by Paul “Belloc” Freeman. The remaining cast are solid. Emily’s ex-husband, who is also an FBI agent, is annoyingly stupid, but his character remains consistently written, so it works.
If you like action, mystery, and crime dramas, you will probably like Absentia. It has the suspense of 24 without the corniness. Emily Byrne, though a bad ass, is not a Mary Sue. She gets knocked out regularly, and has to use her wits as often as her martial arts. Her partner Cal, added in season 2, is similarly bad ass, and has an interesting back story added in season 3.