Channel Surfing: Legends – Chemistry

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Another week come and gone, and Sean Bean is still alive: all in all, a good week for television!

It’s late at night on an empty road…  a family is pulled over by some men dressed as police in what quickly turns out to be a kidnapping and the murder of two actual police officers.  While this normally wouldn’t involve the FBI’s undercover ops (DCO) – at least not right away – this case is special (duh… otherwise it wouldn’t be in the show); the father is an old Russian chemist responsible for one of the deadliest weaponized toxins created by Russia.  Unfortunately, the toxin didn’t remain in the hands of the Russian government (though I’m not sure that’s such a hot place for it either…) – they just happened to sell it to some bad guys who just happened to run out before they had caused all the mayhem they wanted.  Under the threat of his wife and daughter’s death, the guy sees no alternative but to help them create more of the toxin.

They seem rather intent on playing up the division between Martin and his handler, Crystal, as she seeks to have him put on leave – she seems to have the support of the staff psychiatrist and their Director, Nelson.  But first…  first they have to solve this one case – the stakes are too high to leave their best field agent out of the loop, and it be a pretty crappy show if they benched the character the whole show is centered on too – just saying.

Meanwhile, Martin is looking to ID the homeless man from last week’s show who was murdered, and he seeks help from one of the FBI’s agents downstairs, Tony Rice (Morris Chestnut).  Tony quickly discovers that Martin was on the scene for the murder, and seeing no other suspects on surveillance footage becomes suspicious of Martin; he goes so far as to launch an unauthorized tail on Martin.

Back to the case!  We’re introduced to another DCO operative, Troy, as they attempt to infiltrate the group(s) they think are responsible.  Unfortunately for Troy, you shouldn’t get too attached to him as he’s killed in a hail of bullets.  Fortunately for Martin and Crystal, a series of unlikely coincidences keep them from being in the same room even though they’re in the same building, and the escape.

With the death of one of their operatives, the trail going cold, and the stakes as high as they are due the nature of the work being done – the DCO sees no other alternative than for them to get further involved and they resurrect one of Martin’s old legends, an arms dealer named Dante Auerbach.

Throughout the show Martin exhibits how difficult it can be to switch back and forth between identities and the mental toll it can take on a person, and we can see what kind of effect the homeless man had on Martin: he’s full of questions and doubts about his own identity.  This should play a minor role moving through the show, and act as a long-term story-arc that can tie things together when they’re moving slowly or need filler.

When it comes to the shows characters, Bean does a masterful job portraying his character – he’s believable and compelling, and he continues to be the shining star of this show.  I hope they begin to do more with Larter’s character; so far she’s a one-dimensional character in my mind, and that’s a crime when she and her character have so much potential.  Gates does a decent job as the Director, but he’s not going to get a lot of play in a show like this and he probably shouldn’t.  Majorino’s role as the tech-wizard is okay…  it could be better though, and the writing makes it a little unbelievable – nobody can get stuff done that fast, I don’t care how good you are.  The introduction of Chestnut’s character is intriguing, but I find it a little unbelievable that a guy in the transportation department is going to defy direct orders to tail a top operative in the DCO (this could lead to a lot of different issues in the future for everybody involved)…  just saying.  I hope they come up with some more plausible storyline here as well.

Overall, I was wrong I guess when I predicted the show would be episodic in nature – I’m looking forward to seeing what happens there.  This show is a good weeknight show where you can do things while you’re watching it and not worry about missing too much; it’s good but not great; and I think it will still continue to live or die with Sean Bean – not a bad actor to pin your show on.

What did you think?

Legends airs on TNT Wednesdays at 9

~ J.T. Riles ~

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Categories: Channel Surfing

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