Touch: heartwarming television

“It’s my job to keep track of those numbers to make connections for those who need to find each other — the ones whose lives need to touch.”

Described by one reviewer as “a supernatural drama,” the new series Touch — starring Kiefer Sutherland and Danny Glover — on the Fox network (Mondays, 8pm Central, debuting March 19) delves more into the quantum, metaphysical realm by exploring the effect of synchronicity on our lives. In fact, it theorizes that synchronicity is not a random act of the universe, but a series of connections that we play a part in creating. Does a television series really go that far in saying that? Not directly, but those schooled in metaphysics will make that leap.

Touch introduces us to Martin Bohm (Kiefer Sutherland) whose wife died on 9/11 and is now left to care for his 11-year-old son, Jake (David Mazouz), an autistic boy who up until now has never touched his dad, let alone spoken to him. He spends his time playing with old cell phones and obsessively writing down numbers.

The pilot episode, which aired on January 25, focuses on an upcoming day, March 18, and the numbers 3-1-8 play a pivotal role as they synchronistically appear everywhere, from the number of a school district on the back of a bus to the address of Professor Arthur Teller (Danny Glover), an autism specialist, to whom Martin turns for keys to understanding his son’s lack of speech and inability to connect with him on a personal level.

Professor Teller tells Martin that his son is extremely gifted, for understanding the power of universal patterns (i.e. the fibonacci sequence, The Golden Mean) innately. In fact, the professor says young Jake has the ability to comprehend the complexity of connections in everyday life unlike anybody else.

“If we could (do that), life would be magical beyond our wildest dreams,” Teller says to Martin. “A quantum entanglement of cause and effect, where everything and everyone reflects on each other – every action, every breath, every conscious thought, connected.”

Connection – within and without the universe – is the underpinning of this new series. The series opens with a voiceover from the mute Jake, telling us about “the red thread of fate,” a Chinese fable that says a red thread is looped around the ankles of all the people that are supposed to come in contact with each other over the course of a lifetime. This thread can stretch and it can bend and it can tangle, but it cannot break.

Touch, brought to us by Tim Kring (“Heroes”), is very detailed, and more information and connections will be known with each viewing. And, this series is a potential tear-jerker. My wife, who watched the show with me, said the program affected her like the best motion pictures. “I felt joy and awe,” she said, “because of the reality of good that can come from connections.”

Missed the pilot episode? View it online here.

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