LAX

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

For those of you out there who are as overly committed (as I am)to watching every possible new fall show, you will have noticed that NBC, in an attempt to juice as much viewership as possible out of the Olympics, is flooding the airwaves with their new shows well in advance of the competition. While the numbers are good, NBC may have wanted to realize that getting a huge market share might not be beneficial when you really have nothing good to offer.

Aside from the exceedingly horrible Father of the Pride, NBC seems intent in wallowing in mediocrity this year - LAX being the latest example. Most of the show feels lifted from other, (arguably) better shows - lots of walking-and-talking shots (West Wing, ER), endless musical montages (Cold Case), assorted sexual tension among coworkers and pervasive wackiness among incidental characters (altogether too many to mention, let's go with Moonlighting, though that implies significantly too much quality) The show's grab-bag approach to tone applies to content, as the pilot contains about 5 or 6 plotlines, which seems a tad overambitious for a pilot episode.

I'm not sure if the overstuffed feeling of the episode is the reason I am complete disinterested in any of the characters here. Certainly, I would not consider myself a fan of either Heather Locklear or Blair Underwood. I'm not sure I've ever regularly watched a series of which Ms. Locklear was a cast member (aside from some occasional viewing of T.J. Hooker as a very young kid), so I don't bring the same baggage (negative or positive) that others might bring to the series. Without the trans-textual context, I find her to be barely acceptable as a protagonist of a series, particularly one who's supposed to be overly professional and competitive, since she aggressively exudes the air of a moron. Blair Underwood is fine, I guess, though utterly devoid of any personality or charisma (for all I know, he's a lively, likeable fellow in person, and his on-screen persona is a carefully crafted piece of acting) The supporting cast was, again, vaguely tolerable, but completely forgettable.

The really alarming aspect of all of this is that this is probably the third best new show NBC has aired so far this year.

Rating: C (Frantic, yet dull)

Reviewed by Padgett Arango
Contents
The Hills Have Eyes 2

Hostel Part II

Six Degrees

Shark

Jericho

Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip

Justice

The Hills Have Eyes

Love Monkey

Out of Practice

Head Cases

Crunchwrap Supreme

The Exorcism of Emily Rose

Batman Begins

Garden State

Hero

13 Going On 30

LAX

Starman

quirkyalone.net

Kill Bill, Vol. 2

Line of Fire

We Shall All Be Healed

Happy Family

Arrested Development

Love Actually

A Minute with Stan Hooper

Tarzan

Karen Sisco

Stop All the World Now

Cold Case

Skin

10-8

Joan of Arcadia

Eve

Luis

Lost In Translation

House of 1000 Corpses

Bubba Ho-Tep

Darkness Falls

Pirates of the Caribbean

The Amazing Race

Treasure Island

FearDotCom

Adaptation

To Hit Armor Class Zero

Without A Trace

8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter

Life With Bonnie

Jalapeņo Cheeseburger

The Mothman Prophecies

Happy Campers

The Man Who Wasn't There

Kiss of the Dragon

Josie & the Pussycats

Hedwig and the Angry Inch

Dr. Pepper

Know By Heart

Waking Life

L.I.E.

Thirteen Ghosts

Earthlink presents Chang and Eng

New York and Country Bar

Change

Motivation and Water Tower Grammar

Crossing Philly

Makeout Club

Undeclared

The Gap

The Abolition of Work

3000 Miles to Graceland

Kolobos

Duets

The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

Diesel Sweeties

The Cold Six Thousand

The Grilled Stuft Burrito (Rebuttal)

60 Second Wipeout

The Patriot

Grilled Stuft Burrito

Cowgirls

Crystalline

Frankenfinger E.P.

One Force Down

Shake

Both Our Secrets

Happy Birthday Captain Columbus!

Fight Club

Whatever It Takes

Committed

That Skinny Motherfucker with the High Voice?

Joe Dirt

The Veggie Whopper

Taco Bell Nachos

Palmetto

Godzilla vs. Monster Zero

The Terror of Mechagodzilla

To The Center

Infiniti+Infiniti

American Psycho

The Del Shredder

What Lies Beneath

The Cheesy Gordita Crunch

Bring It On

Chill Factor

Alan Mendelsohn, the Boy from Mars

Bad Company

The Blair Witch Project

Hyacinths and Thistles

Lake of Dracula

We'll Have a Time

Home Depot

Snow Day

The Virgin Suicides