Sunday, July 14, 2013

Pilot Review: The Bridge

The Bridge (FX)
Premiered July 10 at 10pm

When a new show premieres on FX, it’s worth taking note. I haven’t loved all of the network’s offerings, and some have taken a bit of time to grow on me. Like so many shows before it, this is a remake of a show that aired previously in another country. It’s actually quite reminiscent of another current show that is based on a Danish series, “The Killing.” This dark, moody drama seems isolated in its caseload yet is sure to have other occasional threads as it explores the dynamic of its two unlikely partners. The notion of a crime series, especially one that is not a procedural, which features an American cop and a Mexican cop working together to take down a killer operating on both sides of the border is definitely intriguing, and this show isn’t for the faint of heart, showing a severed body that turns out to be the top half of one woman and the bottom half of another. In terms of casting, I think Demian Bichir is a great choice. He was so fantastic on “Weeds” and here gets to be funny and charming, bringing snacks to his first visit to the El Paso police station and cracking jokes while holding on for dear life on car rides. While I did like Diane Kruger in “Inglourious Basterds,” the idea of casting a non-American actress in a role that needs to be one hundred percent American feels inauthentic. Ted Levine and Annabeth Gish are both proven supporting TV players, and I’m already pleased with what I’ve seen of both of them. I think that Gish’s Charlotte will have a much bigger role to play that should breath some life and creativity into what could be a depressing and dull primary case. I haven’t yet made up on my mind on this one, but I’m willing to come back to see how episode two feels.

How will it work as a series? It looks like Bichir’s Marco and Kruger’s Sonya will be teamed up as they investigate the disappearances of these many women and are taunted by whoever it is trying to bring about a twisted, violent sense of justice. That should make for a compelling if gloomy look at international cooperation and conflicting personalities.
How long will it last? FX tends to invest in its programs, and I think that this is one that it will try hard to make sure sticks. The ratings for the pilot were great, and the show has been receiving positive reviews as well. I suspect that a second season pickup will be coming in the next few weeks.

Pilot grade: B

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