Welcome to my first review of the new year, TV Tourists!
ABC has premiered its new short-run (only eight episodes) series, Killer Women, starring Tricia Helfer (Battlestar Galactica), Marc Blucas (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Michael Trucco (also Battlestar Galactica) and Alex Fernandez (Devious Maids, Dallas).
Executive produced by Sofia Vergara (Modern Family) and created by Hannah Shakespeare, this high-octane, sexy new action series follows the exploits of Molly Parker (Helfer), the sole female member of the elite Texas Rangers, the notorious lawmen who patrol the violent Lonestar State frontier.
Backing her up on the homefront are her brother Billy (Trucco) and his wife Nessa (Marta Milans). Not so much so is her soon-to-be-ex-husband Jake (Jeffrey Nordling, Body of Proof). Luckily she's getting busy with sexy DEA Agent Dan Winston (Blucas), though the two really have very little chemistry in my opinion (and dude cannot pull off that facial hair).
Aside from the relationships, the real action of the series comes from the pursuit and capture of the criminal-of-the-week ... in this case, women. As the previews have toted, "8 weeks, 8 killers, one tough Texas Ranger." If there's one thing Helfer knows how to do on screen, it's kick ass. She pulls off the tough-gal act well. The Texas accent ... which tends to go in and out ... not so much.
The show certainly doesn't hold back, kicking off the pilot with a fast-paced murder - scorned woman in red stilettos blows away ex-lover's bride at the wedding (point of humor: after the woman takes off in her car, multiple attendees at the church proceed to pull out a crapload of guns and shoot after her ... how Texan?). But Molly sees that not is all as it appears to be, setting her up to be a standout at her job. Always nice to see a show centering around a strong, intelligent, savvy woman.
Unfortunately I don't see anything particular new or outstanding here. The real problem is, what starts out looking like a wild and crazy ride quickly turns into a rather heavy-handed drama. I think the show would fare better to live up to what was hyped in all the previews ... more Tarantino, less Lifetime. After all, KW is on the network that brings you juicy goodness like Revenge and Scandal. This show needs to be heightened to that level.
It's interesting that Killer Women is going head-to-head with FX's Justified and that Helfer could be seen as the female equivalent to Timothy Olyphant's U.S. Marshal Raylen Givens. I think Justified is a much richer show with characters that are meatier and more layered, but to be fair, that show has been on for years and this is the just pilot episode of KW. But with only eight initial episodes, the show needed to make a bigger splash than I think it does. I'm sure male viewers will appreciate how much Helfer's amazing physique is on display, though.
It's not like there's a big commitment here ... a well-enough, two-month ride. But if you're hunkering for real Texas-based fun, may I recommend catching up onTNT's Dallas, which comes back Jan. 13. That is a very twisted, tasty treat! And, as previously mentioned, there's Justified, now airing.
BOTTOM LINE: Not entirely roped in, but may stick around for the octet of eps.
Killer Women airs Tuesdays at 10 pm on ABC.