Wednesday, August 30, 2006

TV premiering tonight: Justice

I've been really disappointed in Fox's entire slate of new shows; it's the only major network that doesn't have a single new offering that I plan to watch beyond the first episode. This show is maybe not as bad as last week's Vanished, but it's not any good, either, and it's so obviously the product of the Jerry Bruckheimer factory plugging one new element (a high-profile L.A. law firm) into their existing (and very successful) procedural format. Since it's on Fox, everything has been amped up annoyingly, and while I can usually tolerate something like CSI or Without a Trace even if I don't exactly like it, this show just gave me a headache, with all the characters constantly yelling and the breakneck pace and the busy camera work and Victor Garber, who was so great on Alias, delivering every line with as much smarm as possible.

And all of this isn't quite enough to distract you from the fact that the show is built around yet another humdrum mystery, and the gimmick of showing what really happened at the end after the verdict is read didn't work on Fox's 2004 summer show The Jury, which at least had a little more dramatic weight. Like Vanished, this will probably get decent enough ratings, but it's not going to become a big hit or get people talking. It's like Fox has just stopped trying this season since 99 percent of America watches American Idol, and that's all they need. Fox, Wednesdays, 9 p.m.

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