Hostages Premiere

hostagesThe Hostages premiere was tonight on CBS.  This is one of the new fall shows that I was looking forward to watching and since it’s on Monday night, and I’m a guy, it has to be DVR’d.

Hostages stars Dylan McDermott (American Horror Story) and Toni Collette (United States of Tara) and is executive produced by heavyweight producer Jerry Bruckheimer (Beverly Hills Cop, The Rock).

The pilot episode of Hostages aired tonight and since it was on CBS, I’m sure it got good ratings (not football good ratings but good for anything that’s not football on a football night).  What are my thoughts?

Well, after watching the Hostages premiere, I’m 50/50 on the show.  There was some good and there was some bad and there was some ugly.

The Good:

Dylan McDermott is excellent.  He is playing FBI agent Duncan Carlisle who, for some reason, wants the President to die.  We meet his character at the start of the show at a bank robbery turned hostage situation.  Agent Carlisle proceeds to end the situation like a boss setting up his bad-ass credentials for us the viewer.  There is some view of his family situation, which isn’t good, that we are lead to believe has something to do with his decision to assassinate the President but of course we don’t yet know all the details.  I’m curious to see what the reason is behind Agent Carlisle’s actions.

The story line is intriguing.  We have seen other movies and TV shows where the President is threatened with assassination but we haven’t seen one like this.  The hostage taking team lead by Agent Carlisle has seemingly thought of every detail and has boxed Dr. Sanders (Toni Collette) in to a corner where she will have no choice but to do as they wish and kill the President.  We as viewers can’t help but put ourselves in Dr. Sanders’ shoes and wonder what we would do in a similar situation.  Would we kill an innocent person to save our family?  We are going to find out.

The Bad:

Too much was introduced too fast regarding all of the problems facing each member of the Sanders family.  The dad has issues, the daughter has issues, and the son has issues, all separate from the fact that they have been taken hostage and are facing death at the hands of people who are serious about killing them if the need arises.  I get that this is a pilot episode and we need to get some things established, but the main story was enough for an introduction.  I think they could have done a better job with this aspect of the story line.

The Ugly:

I don’t like Toni Collette.  Not at all.  There is just something harsh about her that grates on my nerves and I’m not buying her as some kind of a genius that will stand up to a team of people who are specifically trained for the hostage situation that they are all in and that she will no doubt out smart them.

The worst part of the show by far however was the music.  Ok people.  We get it.  This is a tense drama.  The music doesn’t have to beat that in to our brains for every minute of the show.  It was getting distracting actually.  They need to tone the ominous music down.  I know this is CBS and they are used to morons watching shows on this network and they have to dumb it down so I get it but geez, not even fans of 2 Broke Girls are dumb enough to need that kind of music non-stop to get the point.


Overall I’d give this show a B-.  There is potential there but it could also go south very quickly.  I had initial concerns about the plot for this show being able to sustain a regular series.  It feels like this would be better suited for a mini-series or a TV movie.  I’m not sure how they are going to get any long-term life out of this show and I worry that it will turn in to Prison Break where once they got out of prison the show spiraled downhill quickly.  How long can we watch this family be held hostage while the doctor decides if she will kill the President or not?  For me, it’s not long.

Hostages airs on CBS Mondays at 9:00.  If you are unfamiliar with the show, here is the trailer:

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