There’s a certain genre of television that I’m not very friendly with, and it’s something I should confess before anyone goes too far in this review. It’s a genre that is dominated by shows with initials as their names these days, and they are geared actually toward people somewhere around my age. I find them awful in general, stunted by broken, goofy dialog that often seems to be written by people who have never heard people speak in real life, and pushed along by action scenes that are curiously hokey, but with delusions of grandeur.
If such shows are your bag, and you can deal with Ashley Judd as an ex-CIA badass (but, I repeat myself), then I’ve got a show for you.
Veering off from most shows in this genre, Missing is another installment of the long arc vs. truly episodic shows, and follows Becca (Ashley Judd) in her quest to find her missing son. We kick off ten years before the events in question, and we watch as Becca’s husband, Paul (Sean Bean), is murdered. He was CIA, and Becca has apparently been living a PTA life since she became a single mother.
Michael (Nick Eversman), the son, is now going off to Rome as part of some amazing study opportunity (or whatever), and when he goes missing, Becca has to hunt him down.
That’s the basic rundown anyway. Becca goes to Rome to try to find out what happened to her son, and before we know it, she’s attacked, and there are a bunch of spooks trying to figure out what’s she doing, and why she’s a spook who fell off the radar, and it’s all aiming at slick feints within feints.
Missing has a certain budgetary gloss of seriousness about it, and it plays out as though conned by its own gravitas. There is something of a fun idea going on somewhere behind the scenes, but the balance in what makes it to the screen is not only difficult to digest, but is at times bordering on the laughable. Becca, apparently from the CIA school of close-quarter combat that advocates flailing wildly in the general direction of your opponent, takes down elite assassins, and is moreover given to bursts of mom-drenalin when she sees a picture of her son.
There’s a constant conflict at play between the show’s tone and it’s choices of plot steps and dialog, and viewers will likely find that the mix is just too much to take.
On the other hand, it wouldn’t be the first time I was wrong about a show that had the possible makings of a guilty pleasure hit, and this one has them in spades. What it does do well, so far (through the first two episodes), is move itself along to the next point of impact at a good clip. Sure, that was a goofy piece of dialog, or that fight scene was a laugh, but we’re already on to five things after that, so who has time to process the complaints? Plus, it has great locations, and it works the cliffhanger-esque, teasing structure that made The Killing so popular last year (until it ended and pissed everyone off).
I’m being overly harsh frankly, and the appeal of the show focusing so largely on its main character will likely serve it well, but I don’t have the highest hopes for its lifespan, and am certainly not sucked in myself. There’s no doubt that this show could perform well in certain markets, but it doesn’t come across in its establishment phase as proving that a primetime network slot is that market… and I rather hope it isn’t if I’m being honest.
How far would you go to save the only thing you have left in the world? After a murder took Paul Winstone’s life, his wife Becca (Ashley Judd) and their son Michael struggled to rebuild their lives. Now, ten years later, Michael goes missing under suspicious circumstances, and Becca will do anything it takes to find him.
Ever since Michael saw his father Paul blown up when he was just 8-years old, Becca has always been a tad overprotective. But she couldn’t say no to Michael’s amazing opportunity to study in Rome. Just a few weeks into his trip, however, Michael disappears. Becca flies to Rome for answers, but no one takes her seriously—so she takes matters into her own hands. You see, Becca isn’t just a mother looking for her son. Both she and Michael’s father used to be lethal CIA agents, and whoever took Michael messed with the wrong mother. Now, if Becca wants to find her son alive, she will have to rely on old friends and reopen old wounds. Her resourcefulness, skill and determination will be put to the test—but a mother’s love knows no limits.
Exotic locations and thrilling twists will keep you riveted in Missing, the new drama from creator, executive producer and writer Gregory Poirier (National Treasure: Book of Secrets) and executive producers Gina Matthews and Grant Scharbo (The Gates) and Steve Shill and James Parriott.