Fall TV Pilot Review: Ironside

Fall TV Pilot Review: Ironside


Airs: Wednesdays at 9:00/8:00c on NBC

Premise: Brash detective Robert Ironside (Blair Underwood) solves tough crimes and outsmarts criminals, all while confined to a wheelchair!

Behind the Scenes: This is a remake of the Raymond Burr-starring series that aired from 1967-1975.  Subject of some controversy given the fact that producers cast Underwood in the role instead of a paraplegic actor.

The Good: Underwood is a born TV star, and is always compelling, even when the material can’t rise to his level.

The Bad: There’s only so much Underwood can do with such a piss-poor, cliche-ridden script.  It’s amazing how quickly the show just falls into the procedural rigamarole.  Not even four minutes in, and we’re already doing the interview-the-witness thing.  The opening case, a homicide disguised as a suicide, could not be any more obvious and unsurprising if it tried.  The producers aren’t even smart enough to withhold how Ironside ended up in a wheelchair – giving that up by the half-hour mark in an extremely overwrought and misjudged sequence that cuts between a flashback of the injury and Ironside getting angry while lifting weights.

Stick Around for Next Week?: No.  This is one dull and unpleasant drama.  Worse than Lucky 7, if you can believe it.

Grade: D-

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