The first episode of this show doesn't air until March 25th, but I managed to get my hands on the press kit, which contains (along with the press releases and the extremely creative promotional lolly-pops) the DVD of the 2-hour pilot, and if the subsequent shows are as well-written and absorbing as this initial offering, I will most certainly make damn sure I don't miss any of them.
I've always enjoyed Ving Rhames' work; he manages to bring humanity and substance to any role he undertakes, whether he's portraying a good guy, a bad guy, or anything in-between. Here, as the infamous Kojak, he's perfectly on the mark, managing to be tough without making it an ego thing, genuinely sensitive when it's called for, and thoroughly able to do what needs to be done (even if it's in conflict with the 'rules'). The part is tailor-made for him, and I would go so far as to say that if you'd never seen the original show, with Telly S. in the title role, you would swear the part was created FOR Rhames.
The pilot episode starts out good, gets better and better and still better, and by the time it was over, I was ready to sign up (in fact, I did - went to the USA Network's site and submitted my email so I could get the weekly newsletter). The plot has many traditional elements of the genre, of course, but it's the WAY it's done, the WAY it's written and executed that elevate it above the fray. I only hope the rest of the episodes live up to this initial offering. I have a feeling they will.
It's happened before here at IMDb that I've been the first person to post a comment on a movie or a show, but this is the first time that I've actually gotten to be one of the first 5 voters. It's an honor to be able to cast one of these first 5 votes for such a promising and inspired new venture.
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