It’s hard to believe the new season has kicked off. And I’m not going to lie, I don’t like when networks do these “special previews” and premiere shows outside of premiere week. One, I’m not ready for it yet. Two, I usually forget the show is premiering because my mind has not kicked into that gear yet. And three, it loses some of the pomp and circumstance (at least in my household) of premiere week. It’s like the start of the NFL season. To me, the season starts the first Sunday of the season. 10-12 games are on the docket for the day (usually my Eagles are one of those teams.) I make my traditional chili, I get the beer chilled, my house is decorated in Eagles green, I have my Eagles jersey on, the phone is shut off, and I watch football for 10-11 straight hours. It’s awesome. The season doesn’t start on Thursday. I hate Thursday games. It’s one thing during holidays when nothing else is on but not every Thursday. So I can’t get excited about that Thursday game because that’s not the start of the season for me. Sunday is. The TV Fall Season is the same way. This isn’t premiere week. Next week is. I have nothing to do at night next week. I will have all my DVRs set up, I will have my schedule of what I’m watching live and what I’ll watch on the DVR later. It’s amazing!! So I don’t know if it hurts or helps shows like The Mysteries of Laura (TMOL) to premiere early. In one regard, there is very little competition so you have a better chance of getting a solid audience. But that can also hurt you if your pilot isn’t the greatest but you build into your momentum and get better as more episodes come around. If the pilot is bad or iffy, you may have already lost people after one episode. It’s also a good thing because it’s been 4-5 months (if you’re Sleepy Hollow 7 months) since we’ve seen our favorite shows so people are itching for something new to watch. And don’t give me the summer season has new shows now because there’s a reason those shows air in the summer (network shows I mean.) It’s because TV viewing goes down significantly in the summer time and therefore not as much pressure for ratings for advertisers. Bottom line, if you’re going to break the premiere week mold, you better have something people will jump on or else you’ve shot yourself in the foot. TMOL might have just shot themselves in the foot. If they get 10 million people to watch again next week, I will quit my real job.
TMOL stars Debra Messing as Det. Laura Diamond. She is one of the top detectives in her precinct struggling to juggle her job, her marriage, and her kids. Certainly not a new premise but one you hope due to casting, will have a new twist or new life breathing into it. And as much as I love Messing, this character is as cliché as they come. Her desk is a mess, her car is a mess, she’s late, she’s disheveled, and she’s unconventional. The problem is, none of this resonates with me. I don’t buy her as a detective let alone the best detective. Seriously, what detective goes to a home to investigate death threats and sits down with the guests and has cake and wine? Even her captain when he is offered wine says “oh I really shouldn’t.” YOU THINK? You are on duty aren’t you? Isn’t there a rule about drinking and being on the job? And this all happens after she shoots a perp in the ear while he’s holding a man hostage in the middle of a busy park. And she picks the ear that closest to the hostage instead of the outside ear. That’s great police work. Then there are her parenting skills. For an interview for a Pre-K school (because her kids were kicked out of the other one) she feeds her kids enough cough syrup so they are calm and almost asleep. She must have overdone it though considering her one son pukes it up. Then when her children are urinating on each other in public, instead of punishing them or freaking out OVER THE FACT HER KIDS ARE PEEING ON EACH OTHER FOR FUN, she asks politely asks them to stop. No wonder her kids are monsters. It also doesn’t help that her husband (soon to be ex) Jake (Josh Lucas) is just a big kid himself…but not in a good way. He’s not Jack Tripper in Three’s Company where he’s funny and goofy and slightly frustrating because he’s just a big kid but he’s so lovable you can’t be mad at him. Plus when he needs to buck up, he does. Jake isn’t close to that. He seems to shirk his parenting duties and when he is around his kids, he’s bringing them pizza and wrestling with them on the couch and then leaves. When his kids are peeing on each other in the park, he thinks it’s funny and it doesn’t seem to phase him at all. You’re probably reading this thinking what’s wrong with a dad bringing his kids pizza and wrestling around with them? Nothing at all….as long as he steps up and is their father when it counts, not just their buddy. I don’t get the impression Jake has time for the serious stuff…only the fun stuff. So from a home life perspective, there isn’t one likable person in the Diamond household.
There was a case that I really didn’t care about. This phone mogul was receiving death threats and everyone (except Laura) thought it was the wife. Turns out it was Laura’s Captain (Elias from Person of Interest) who was the person who killed him because he was having an affair with his wife. Ok I’ll admit I didn’t see that twist coming but it fell flat because the rest of the case was so uninteresting. Because Captain Elias was obviously removed of his duties as captain of the squad. Guess who just so happens to be put in his place? That’s right…Laura’s husband Jake. Which again, isn’t there something against spouses working in the same precinct let alone one reporting to the other?
I really wanted to like this show but I just didn’t. I like a lot of the cast, independent of this show, but they all deserve better than this. The writing is bad, the premise is worse, and there isn’t a likable character on the show. Not to mention this show doesn’t seem to know what they want to be. Is this a comedy? Is this a dramatic cop show with some comedic elements? Is it a family show? And shows don’t have to be channeled into one vain or another…they can cross multiple angles (which Castle does brilliantly.) But this show doesn’t seem to have a direction. On top of that, I just can’t buy that Laura is so good at her job yet so awful a parent. Mostly because I don’t believe she’s as good a detective as we’re being told she is. Kate Beckett, Olivia Benson, Brenda Leigh Johnson….those are good cops. Laura? I guess shooting a perp with precision in the middle of Battery Park is supposed to indicate she’s the best of the best. Or really dumb and really lucky. I’m not sure. But she didn’t come across as a confident, seasoned vet who commands respect in her squad. Add in the husband being forgettable and the kids being beyond disastrous, I have no interest in seeing where Laura goes from here and what her mysteries actually are.