The River: Season 1 (2012)

Season 1
The River

Critics Consensus

Despite its gimmicky premise and occasionally silly storylines, The River is a moderately scary and clever supernatural thriller.



Critic Ratings: 27


Audience Score

User Ratings: 28
User image


Air date: Feb 7, 2012
Air date: Feb 7, 2012
Air date: Feb 14, 2012
Air date: Feb 21, 2012
Air date: Feb 28, 2012
Air date: Mar 6, 2012
Air date: Mar 13, 2012
Air date: Mar 20, 2012

The River: Season 1 Photos

Tv Season Info

In season 1 of this paranormal drama, famed TV explorer Emmett Cole (Bruce Greenwood) goes missing while looking for "magic" in an uncharted part of the Amazon basin. Six months later, his wife Tess (Leslie Hope), son Lincoln (Joe Anderson) and a film crew set out to find him. With supernatural encounters and powerful curses around almost every corner, their search proves to be more dangerous, and deadly, than any of them could have imagined. Steven Spielberg and Oren Peli are executive producers.


Bruce Greenwood
as Emmet Cole
Joe Anderson (VI)
as Lincoln Cole
Leslie Hope
as Tess Cole
Eloise Mumford
as Lena Landry
Paul Blackthorne
as Clark Quietly
Thomas Kretschmann
as Capt. Kurt Brynildson
Daniel Zacapa
as Emilio Valenzuela
Shaun Parkes
as Andreus Jude "A.J." Poulain
Paulina Gaitan
as Jahel Valenzuela
Lee Tergesen
as Russ Landry
Jeff Galfer
as Sammy Kirsch
Katie Featherston
as Rosetta "Rabbit" Fischer
Corben Turner
as Lincoln (8 years old)
Jose Pablo Cantillo
as Manny Centeno
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for The River Season 1

All Critics (27) | Top Critics (16)

All these characters seem modestly interesting, but none, at least on first acquaintance, feel compelling. Nor are we drawn into their quest.

Feb 7, 2012 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

Depending on your tolerance, it's either a ridiculous presentation best suited to a drinking game or a paranormal adventure that owes everything to "Lost."

Feb 7, 2012 | Full Review…

The River seems like stale tap water, unworthy of any prolonged big drink of time or effort.

Feb 7, 2012 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…
Top Critic

Be not afraid. Be very not afraid. (But you will be amused.)

Feb 7, 2012 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…
Top Critic

The creators deserve credit for one thing: There is nothing that looks like this show on television right now.

Feb 7, 2012 | Full Review…

Skarsgård's acting chops make this a must-see oddity.

Sep 7, 2018 | Full Review…

You may not be terrified while you watch, but you'll definitely be intrigued.

Apr 11, 2018 | Full Review…

The river itself, oddly enough, isn't that interesting.

Feb 7, 2012 | Full Review…

We hope that it embraces its inner Lost and heads right on in to the heart of darkness.

Feb 7, 2012 | Rating: 7/10 | Full Review…

The format feels more gimmicky than revelatory.

Feb 7, 2012 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The River: Season 1

  • Apr 06, 2016
    The overaching premise of trying to find the lost father was very interesting. It is also suprisingly scary! Some episodes aren't as good as others. The cast as a whole give great performances! The series ends, but not perfectly. They answer a question and then ask another. But even though the other question they ask is very intriguing, and the second season could have been great, (they were actually given an order of 8 episodes for the first season) you aren't THAT angry about it. The series as a whole is well acted, has a very high production value, a great premise, and is very scary. And it ends well enough that you aren't angry!
  • Dec 04, 2013
    Very good mini-series, since it did get cancelled. I understand since it could not viably be dragged into an on-going show. Still very entertaining and fun.

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