Fall TV Pilot Review: Hostages

Fall TV Pilot Review: Hostages


Airs: Mondays at 10/9c on CBS

Premise: A family is taken hostage by a group of kidnappers led by FBI agent Dylan McDermott (not Dermot Mulroney), and their freedom is conditioned on surgeon mom (Toni Colette) killing the President, upon whom she is scheduled to operate.

Behind the Scenes: Jerry Bruckheimer, fresh from his recent separation from Disney, is an executive producer.  Co-creator Jeffrey Nachmanoff wrote 2004's The Day After Tomorrow.

The Good: Always great to see the hugely talented Toni Colette on a TV screen.  She plays mom characters and women in distress to a tee, and this is a perfect role for her.  Slick production values and decent pacing - doesn't rush through its set-up like so many other pilots these days.  The kidnappers are not one-dimensional bad guys (think Ed Harris in The Rock).

The Bad: Dylan McDermott is a big 'ol yawn of a villain.  He sleepwalks through the pilot, and lacks the necessary balance of menace and charisma needed for the role.  The story quickly induces eye-rolling in the viewer, and already teeters toward absurdity.  This first hour moved fast enough and didn't make any huge mistakes, so some of the flaws were easy to overlook, but there is no way the show can sustain this premise for an entire season without becoming a parody of itself.  It could have the makings of a guilty pleasure but it takes itself too seriously for anybody to enjoy it as such.

Stick Around for Next Week?: Nah.  It tries to be a network version of Homeland, but it's just not up to snuff.  Colette deserves a better vehicle.

Grade: C

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