Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Pilot Review: Blood and Oil

Blood and Oil (ABC)
Premiered September 27 at 9pm

There’s always at least one show each season that just doesn’t even come close to interesting me. This is definitely that show, one that focuses on oil in North Dakota, a state I only enjoy traveling to if Fargo is my destination. Part of the reason is that I already watched “Dallas” for a while when it got remade, and with this kind of show, you actually want more soapy drama to make it exciting, even if it’s more absurd and silly as a result. No, this show is rather run-of-the-mill, showcasing a young couple who get into a destructive car accident immediately upon arriving to their new home, and somehow Chace Crawford’s ambitious Billy manages to put down $10,000 and turn it into $75,000 instantly to make Barry Corbin’s landowner a deal that he doesn’t refuse even though the competition is offering nearly double the price. At least Billy and Cody are being smart enough to pay it forward and produce a $50,000 investment check for the people who got them started as soon as they actually have money to play with, but it’s hard to get too attached to anything or anyone on this show since it doesn’t feel realistic or worthwhile. Ending the first episode with a near-deadly attack and the main character of the show about to go up in flames hardly seems like it’s meant to be taken seriously, and though Rock Springs may be booming, I can assure you I won’t be returning for any reason.

How will it work as a series? It didn’t take long for Billy and Cody to grow their net worth exponentially, so I imagine they’ll both be world leaders with private jets by episode three. On a more serious note, they’ve gotten themselves in bed with the top oil moguls in town, and so now it’s just a matter of them going to war on the same side as everyone else tries to sabotage them because that’s clearly the only reasonable way to go about making money in this town.
How long will it last? The ratings for the pilot weren’t spectacular but they weren’t too awful either, but this was not the success that “Quantico” was in its debut airing. Last year, ABC renewed many more shows than I expected, and so it’s possible the network is on a hot streak right now. I wouldn’t predict this show to be one of its more enduring series, but I do think that ABC will give it a chance to see how it does.

Pilot grade: C-

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