TV Review - Terriers ("Pilot Episode")


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Airs: Wednesdays, 9/8c on FX
Genre: Semi-serialized crime comedy-drama
Set-Up: Former LAPD detective Hank (Donal Logue) and his partner Britt (Michael Raymond-James) are two scruffy, low-rent private investigators.  The pilot finds them recapturing Britt's dry cleaner's bulldog and locating the missing daughter of Hank's boozy buddy.  When bodies start piling up, the two find themselves getting in deeper than they originally thought, and taking on a local bigwig named Robert Lindus (Christopher Cousins).  Future episodes promise new one-off mysteries, but the conflict with Lindus will continue.
Verdict: Surprisingly good.  The unappealing ads didn't really do it justice.  Created by Ted Griffin (who wrote the 2001 remake of Ocean's 11) and Executive Produced by Shawn Ryan (The Shield's mastermind), the show has a lot of potential.  It works as a comedy, a drama, and a mystery-of-the-week-type procedural.   Logue is an appealing lead (always has been), and the pilot features some stylish direction from Hustle & Flow's Craig Brewer.  An exciting, unexpected fight in a parking garage is probably the highlight of the episode.  Terriers has a rich, gritty look to it and the dialogue is snappy.  Though the personal, romantic lives of Hank and Britt fail to generate much interest, the relationship between Hank and his former colleague, Det. Mark Gustafson (Prison Break's Rockmond Dunbar), is a tad more intriguing and the first mystery out of the box was engaging.  I like that the central conflict is not resolved in the pilot, and instead designed to last an entire season.  That's thinking ahead.  That's also the kind of continuing storyline that will keep me hooked and coming back for more.  Knowing that Shawn Ryan will pen a handful of future episodes gives me added reassurance, as any Shield fan can attest.
Add to DVR?: Yes - season pass.

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