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08 July 2008 @ 12:02 pm
Review: Leverage (TNT)  
I know that the last couple of reviews have been lukewarm at best but today, today I bring to you a double scoop of awesome covered in awesomesauce. That is the new show Leverage.

I will say from the get go that if you aren’t a fan of Ocean’s Eleven, Twelve, or Thirteen, if you felt the plots were too confusing, then this is not the show for you. I will also say that I felt Christian Kane was okay in Angel but nothing extraordinary. So you don’t have to worry about this being biased Angel-fangirl squeeing.

Leverage has a very simple plot, steal from the rich to help the poor. That is it, in a nutshell. Of course, modern day Robin Hoods need something for their troubles so why not steal just a little more from the rich to get a little for yourself?

Our slightly criminal (okay, very criminal) heroes are lead by Nate Ford (Timothy Hutton). Nate is an alcoholic, turning to booze after the death of his son. He worked as an insurance recoverer, finding stolen pieces of art or merchandise to keep the insurance company from having to pay out on policies. However, after the same company denied his claim for a treatment for his dying son, he left the business. He is the one honest man among thieves.

He is teamed up with three respective experts in their field. First, there is Alex Hardison (Aldis Hodge), an internet and computer fraud specialist. Alex is anything but your run of the mill ghetto fabulous hustler. Oh no, he might say “bra” every other word but Alex is smart at what he does and a true nerd. We get to know all we need to about him through a fantastically hilarious flashback.

Then there is Eliot Spencer (Christian Kane), a retrieval specialist. Eliot probably gets the best flashback introduction of all. Eliot doesn’t like guns and instead, prefers to keep a calm and level head when dispatching security guards or Russian mafia. The character reminds me a lot of Jason Bourne, only with more personality and heart. It is almost the role that Kane was born to play with that slow drawl of his.

And no team would be complete without the strong women beside their strong men. Parker is a security circum infiltration and alter a thief. Parker is, as Eliot says, twenty pounds of crazy in a five pound bag. Her flashback is the most disturbing of all the team. There isn’t much to say about Parker from the get go aside from the fact that while she may have watched the Mission Impossible movie one too many times, she is very good at navigating the ins and outs of buildings, literally.

Lastly is our presumed love interest for Nate, Sophie Deveraux (Gina Bellman). Sophie is your all around grafter, running the long and short con on whomever she sees as a good mark. She is a horrible actress on stage but put her doing something criminal and she turns into Helen Mirren. She and Nate have a history. Let’s just say it is your classic girl meets boy, boy sees girl stealing a priceless painting, girl shoots boy, boy shoots back.

Nate, Alex, Eliot, and Parker are teamed up together when Victor Dubenich (Saul Rubinek) approaches Nate to steal back some airline plans that were stolen from him by a rival company. Though Nate is reluctant at first, when Victor dangles the chance to get back at his old employer by forcing them to pay out the 15 million dollar policy on the plans, he can’t resist. Nate wants revenge for his dead son. The other three just want the three hundred thousand dollars that Dubenich promised them for the job. (Sophie joins the team later).

It turns out though that the job wasn’t stealing back something stolen, it was flat out stealing. The rest of the pilot is so good that I don’t want to give any spoilers away. Suffice it to say that the group wants to make sure that Dubenich gets what is coming to him. After some serious comeuppance for Dubenich, the group realizes that they did like working together. The only problem is, Nate will not do anything else that hurts innocent people.

The group decides that is fine because let’s face it, the bad guys usually have more money. So they make it their mission to get back at the bad guys. They’ve got all the money and power so it is up to them to give the little guy some leverage. And really, I am one girl who cannot resist a good comeuppance. Just saying that word gives me thrills so it is no wonder that I adore this show already.

I assume that each week we will get to see a different caper from the group. This premise could get very stale very fast if not for a few simple facts. First the cast is so perfectly fit together, they have such amazing chemistry together, that you can’t help but get captivated simply by their interactions with each other. Second is the writing. It’s sharp, crisp, and very funny. The dialogue is amusing and yet feels genuine. Third is the direction and pacing. At no point in the pilot did I get bored. It just flew by. The music is similar to the Ocean’s franchise but it really works in this kind of caper dramady.

This is one that NEEDS to get picked up and that everyone should be tuning into. Even if you aren’t much for caper plots, stay for the amazing and fully developed characters. This is how a pilot should be done. It just pulls you in and you can’t wait to see what this group gets into (or gets out of) again.

YouTube Playlist

And because I can't put it off any longer, Fringe.

Review of Pretty Handsome : Review of True Blood : Review of The Middleman : Review of Book of Daniel
Current Mood: giddygiddy
phantom_queenphantom_queen on July 8th, 2008 09:25 pm (UTC)
You know this sounds similar to a british show that used to be on TV. I think it was called "Hustle"
Kelly: Review Timexlivvielockex on July 17th, 2008 12:00 am (UTC)
I haven't seen "Hustle" but since it is similar to Leverage and I liked the pilot, I will check it out. It wouldn't surprise me at all if they recycled the show. American tv seems to be loving recycling overseas products.
shanmarashanmara on July 9th, 2008 08:44 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much for the playlist!
It's indeed the same mood than Ocean Eleven - and even if I wasn't a fan of Lindsey in 'Angel', CK is perfect here :)
Kelly: Review Timexlivvielockex on July 17th, 2008 12:02 am (UTC)
I am just glad people are liking it. Hopefully it will stay on the air for a few seasons so we can have CK on our tvs more often.
ladysophiekittyladysophiekitty on July 16th, 2008 02:50 am (UTC)
Hey would you mind friending me? I love your icons and fanfiction.
Kelly: Cordy: SQUEExlivvielockex on July 17th, 2008 12:04 am (UTC)
Thanks so much for friending! I am always looking to meet new people. :)
Gaby: tv: ats - cast - ck brokebacks for dbsquaringkarma on July 27th, 2008 08:27 pm (UTC)
I just watched this premiere last night and it was quite excellent. Can't wait for it to premiere!