If you’re new to all things Sharknado, don’t be fooled by the third sequel’s poster art or subtitle: “The Fourth Awakens” is not “Sharknado in Space” (that was part three, duh!). Whereas previous installments of SyFy’s surprise-smash were contained to Los Angeles, New York, and Washington, D.C., respectively (with a brief stint in orbit), this outing sees ex-surfer-turned-savior Fin Shepard (Ian Ziering) and his family chasing carnivorous cyclones across America. Writer Thunder Levin and director Anthony C. Ferrante quadruple down on the Mad Magazine silliness and pseudo-science (sharknado-sensing defense systems?!). Conversely, the production values have improved (no joke), practically robbing Fourth of the series’ crucial Z-grade-effects charm. The inevitable (and now in-production) fifth chapter promises to take the carnage international. I just hope Ferrante and company realize they’re on the precipice of mediocrity. Sharknado is the rare franchise where better is not better. My advice: go bad, or go home.
Listen to Kicking the Seat Podcast #201 to hear Ian venture to the heart of the Sharknado with series writer Thunder Levin!