Monday, June 10, 2013

Review - King & Maxwell

There's no shortage of TV shows featuring hot, antagonistic, witty banter-happy crime-fighting partners, but there are ones that are SO much better than TNT's new series King & Maxwell.

TNT seems to like ampersand titles - Rizzoli & Isles, Franklin & Bash - but this new drama about disgraced ex-secret service agents-turned-private-eyes is far less entertaining, especially compared to R&I, which is really fun.


Sean King (Jon Tenney, The Closer) and Michelle Maxwell (Rebecca Romijn, Eastwick, Ugly Betty) are atypical PIs. Their unique skills give them a leg up on conventional law enforcement. Maxwell is a former elite athlete who uses her brains, beauty and Beltway connections to solve cases. King's career in the Secret Service ended when the presidential candidate he was assigned to protect was assassinated, sending him on a downward spiral. Today, King has added a law degree to his arsenal of skills, allowing him to navigate the system in ways a typical private investigator never could. Along the way, King and Maxwell clash over everything, from her garbage-strewn car to his love of wine over beer.

Yep.  Nothing really groundbreaking here, but it's summer and you expect the nets to deliver shows that are light on depth and heavy on sexy and polarizing personalities that clash in an amusing way.  K&M is trying too hard and just isn't fun.  Romijn  is completely miscast - frankly, I have never seen her excel in any role she's done, yet she keeps getting cast.  One of her opening lines, "we're not cops, we're private investigators," is delivered so flatly and unconvincingly, I had to roll my eyes. I in now way buy her as a PI and definitely not as a secret service agent.  Tenney isn't bad, but he has very little to work with.  The premiere case was boring, the supporting cast isn't memorable ... eck.

Honestly, I knew I wasn't going to like this show just from watching the many promos leading up to tonight's premiere.  TNT of course was heralding all the supposedly humorous, playful moments to lure you in, but they fail to do so.  My low expectations were completely met.

If you are looking for a similar show with leads who are both great in their characters and ooze chemistry, look to ABC's Castle (which coincidentally is in massive syndication on TNT) and its stars Nathan Fillion and Stana Katic.  For another fun clashing of partners, check out the aforementioned Rizzoli & Isles, starring Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander, which returns June 25.

BOTTOM LINE:  Don't bother with this lackluster offering.

King & Maxwell airs Mondays at 10 p.m. on TNT.

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