Saturday, March 10, 2012

A BETTER TRADE THAN WHATEVER DAN SNYDER HAS ORCHESTRATED: I haven't watched Person of Interest with any regularity, largely due to a murderous timeslot, but they hyped this week's episode so much and the commercials suggested the show finally found the sense of humor that has helped other CBS procedurals break out, and with ABC in rerun mode, I decided to DVR it, and while I still admire the show's clever transitions and visual style, I still find it fundamentally broken. The problem isn't in the concept or the writing, but in the lead casting--Jim Caviezel (who I've liked in some things, most notably Frequency) is so wooden and bland as the action hero that it stops the show dead (Michael Emerson and Taraji P. Henson, on the other hand, are perfectly fine). Imagine the show just slightly tweaked, with someone with a little more edge playing Reese or an equivalent role--say, a Josh Holloway, or, if they really wanted a "movie star," Christian Slater--and I think you'd have a show that'd be much better than the one we've got.


  1. Shani7:17 PM

    Should we credit Greg Hoblit's direction?  Because I agree with you that Frequency was the only role in which Caviezel seemed alive.

    Josh Holloway would have been TERRIFIC in the part.

  2. Adam C.8:28 PM

    I still have trouble understanding how it is that Holloway has had exactly two roles since Lost ended (what was essentially a glorified cameo on Community in the paintball sequel episode, and the latest Mission: Impossible movie - which I haven't seen, so for all I know it's another small part).  What. The. Hell?

  3. Shani8:43 PM

    His part in MI was heartbreakingly small.  He'd have been great as the character (a fellow operative) for the whole flick.

    Maybe he's enjoying life with his Lost residuals?

  4. J. Bowman11:51 AM

    Would replacing Caviezel with Slater just make it My Own Worst Enemy?

    (In asking this, I admit that I saw maybe four episodes of MOWE, and that's four more than I've seen of Person, so my commercial-generated impression may be way off here. I ask anyway.)

  5. Becca3:58 PM

    I admit I tuned in to a few minutes of this ep, mostly because I'm a sucker for hype. I'd watched a couple eps already early on, and had given up on it. I tuned in to the scene where Jim climbs in to Taraji's car, and they banter a bit. Seriously, it's a joke he's playing on everyone, right? He's TERRIBLE. Like, aggressively, actively terrible. Wooden doesn't even begin to describe it. It can't be real. 

    And I agree that Holloway would have been great in the role! They'd have had to tweak the show a bit, but Emerson would have been a great straight foil against his easy charm. 

  6. Adam C.4:05 PM

    <span>Maybe he's enjoying life with his Lost residuals?</span>

    Hey, if so, then God bless - pretty sure I remember reading that he and his wife had a kid fairly recently, so I'd hardly begrudge him some good quality time at home. But it'd be great to see him again in a substantial part sometime soon.  

  7. Watchman4:50 PM

    We've watched it from the beginning.  The woodeness of John Reese I have to think is intentional.  They have been telling in bits and pieces through flashbacks how he came to be a broken man and it seems that is supposed to be a big waving read flag to show rather than tell how far gone he was. 

    And for those of you who haven't been watching and thought he was flat this week...well let's just say that by far this episode showed the most emotional range of the season. 

  8. Alan and Dan pushed him quite hard for the lead in the ill-fated NBC Rockford Files reboot.  The problem he may be facing is that he's so identified with playing Sawyer that it's hard for him to get another part.

  9. Jessica6:36 PM

    It is a small role, unfortunately. Although with a different haircut it took me half the movie to figure out it was Josh Holloway.

  10. Jessica6:39 PM

    I have to agree with this assessment...Caviziel may not be the most charismatic performer but I think the flatness of the character is intentional and as long as Caviziel has it in him to tweak his performance as he "repairs" over the seasons (if he does...please let it happen..) it's not a bad choice.

  11. Adam C.7:39 PM

    I remember that, Matt, though as I recall it was more in the nature of suggesting "what if JH had been cast" after the Dermot Mulroney-led version failed (unsurprisingly) to get off the ground - I could be wrong on the timing, but I think the show was more or less a dead letter by the time Alan and Dan were discussing Holloway on the podcast.

    I think we can also "what if" on the Gambit/X-Men rumors - as I think I heard it, he could never commit to enough time out of his Lost schedule to join those films.  Had he been able to work that out, and had the ensuing counterfactual X-Men films with a Gambit character been any good, he could have blunted the "strong ID with Sawyer" problem right there.

    I think now, whether or not there's an ID-with-Sawyer issue at its root, it could be that he's just been out of the pop culture eye for too long.