TV MADNESS #8: LAST RESORT

“Last Resort” co-creator Shawn Ryan is one of my favorite creative forces working in television today. His first big series was the revolutionary “The Shield” for FX. That series changed the way we saw cop shows. It gave birth to a new breed of cop show.

Since then Ryan has worked some of the best in the business. He helped David Mamet on “The Unit”. He worked with David Greenwalt on “Angel”.

He also created the underrated cop show “The Chicago Code” with Jennifer Beals and Jason Clarke.

He produced the utterly brilliant “show no one saw” “Terriers” with Donal Logue.

And he just wrote the pilot for the “Beverly Hills Cop” TV show starring Eddie Murphy.

“Last Resort” stars Andre Braugher as a submarine captain who questions his orders to fire nuclear weapons on an unsuspecting Pakistan. The confirmation code didn’t come through the proper channels.

His First Officer (Scott Speedman) concurs on them questioning the orders. Soon they find themselves being fired upon by their own navy and are deemed renegades.

Braugher’s captain takes the 150-man submarine to a NATO listening station where they warn the world to stay away. They hope to buy some time and figure out, why they are at war? Who is behind their orders? And eventually find their way back home.

The show’s pilot is directed by Martin Campbell, who directed “Casino Royale” and “Green Lantern”. The pilot is quite intriguing and a great example of just how original a TV show can be with a little leeway.

One big lingering question I have after watching the pilot is what are they going for with Andre Braugher’s Captain.

That last scene got me thinking they could be going the Captain Nemo or Captain Ahab route. Is he unstable? Will power get to him? Is the submarine going to become the Nautilus? Will Scott Speedman turn into a modern day version of Ned Land?

There have been many comparisons to “Jericho” but this isn’t science fiction. It is also not a “ship show” where it all takes place on the sub like say “Seaquest” Season One was.  If anything it is almost a naval spy/conspiracy show.

I am quite a fan of Andre Braugher, Scott Speedman and Autumn Reeser so I will be watching this show for as long as it is on.

But will it find an audience on TV’s busiest night, Thursday? And on ABC? It’s really a shame its not on CBS because this would be perfect to go on Fridays after “Blue Bloods”. I’ll expect ABC to move the show by midseason to earlier in the week.

Just hope it lasts. I am really intrigued to see what stories they want to tell with this premise.

GIVE IT: 4 episodes

WATCH OR DVR: DVR

PILOT RATING:  4 out of 5

“LAST RESORT” BEGINS SEPTEMBER 27 ON ABC.

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