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Old 09-23-2013, 10:23 PM   #1
astrohip
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The Blacklist "Pilot" 9/23/2013

I had high hopes, read some decent reviews. But not for me, I'm one & done (technically, 1/2 and done).

After 26 different cliches & tropes were rolled out before the first break, I said goodbye. My wife lasted until the next commercial.

Bad guy walks into FBI HQ, sets briefcase down, takes off jacket, starts to unrobe. People just watch him. WTF people would be on terrorist lockdown if that happened. Then when they wake-up, the shooters surround him 360. 360! So they can shoot each other?

She's late her first day. But the helicopters can pick her up. And her husband gets pissed because his wife, AN FBI AGENT, can't break away after lunch to meet the baby doc. ON HER FIRST DAY.

And then the car crash trope. Puhleeze, not again. And then I checked out.

My wife stayed until the break, got up and walked away. I told her not to be swayed because I gave up. She said, no it got even worse.
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Old 09-23-2013, 10:31 PM   #2
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Wow, I had the exact opposite reaction. I thought it was just made of hook. I don't think a first hour of a show has grabbed me like that since Lost.

I have no idea if it can sustain it, but I'm so in.
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:09 PM   #3
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Wow, I had the exact opposite reaction. I thought it was just made of hook. I don't think a first hour of a show has grabbed me like that since Lost.

I have no idea if it can sustain it, but I'm so in.
I'm more with Rob on this one. I thought it was pretty good. Some nice twists and some tension. It had it's problems though. Some of the tropes that Astrohip mentioned but also things like the FBI not seeing the obvious trap with the chemical spill and Spader's character was a bit all too powerful, but overall something that has caught my interest.
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:18 PM   #4
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I'm sorry, but all of the cheesy over the top cliche's was just too much. I almost wonder how the actors kept a straight face through it.
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Old 09-24-2013, 12:28 AM   #5
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I was also terribly bothered by the cliches, tropes, and absurd behaviors. But unfortunately, I am a sucker for a masterful bad guy (or good guy) like Reddington. I am going to keep watching, for at least a few episodes, to see what his plan might be. I just hope he does not turn out to be Elizabeth's father or uncle or something that could have easily been verified with a DNA test.

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Old 09-24-2013, 01:29 AM   #6
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I enjoyed it, but just felt like I was watching a Reader's Digest version of the story. It moved way too fast. I could have done with a 90 minute premiere.

I'm a huge Spader fan so I admit I am biased. It's nice to see that he's lost weight.

But yes, the whole thing was absurd. Highly unrealistic and yeah, there's those cliches too. Still, I was entertained.
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Old 09-24-2013, 01:50 AM   #7
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And her husband gets pissed because his wife, AN FBI AGENT, can't break away after lunch to meet the baby doc. ON HER FIRST DAY.
I, too, was annoyed by that during the call. But in the part you did not watch, it turns out that her husband is a spy or something, so maybe he was just trying to get more information out of her.
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Old 09-24-2013, 04:46 AM   #8
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I'm in. I like Spader and the female lead. Some of it was goofy but it is television so I don't expect perfection. SP is set.
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Old 09-24-2013, 05:10 AM   #9
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In for Spader.

The car crash was particularly annoying because we just saw it last week on another show, but all in all I enjoyed it.
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Old 09-24-2013, 05:23 AM   #10
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The car crash was particularly annoying because we just saw it last week on another show, but all in all I enjoyed it.
Normally the Car Broadside Crash Trope bothers me, a lot (and don't we see it every week on one show or another?)...but at least in this case they set it up so the car was trapped on a bridge with one lane cleared, and specifically attacked when it was turned sideways.

The somewhat more annoying trope in that case was the Omniscient Villain (who was able to set everything up as he did), but since this seems like it's going to be a show about an Omniscient Hero(?) vs. Omniscient Villains every week, I guess we'd better get used to it.

And then there was the logical question of, even assuming he could set up the crash as he did, why would he? The object of the exercise was to capture the little girl, so tossing the SUV she's in around like that would seem to pose potential obstacles to the ultimate success of the plan...

But again, that's clearly the kind of show this is going to be, and as long as Spader is as smarmily pompous and Boone is as cutely determined and the story continues to be an over-the-top rocket ride, I'll be in. At least, until/unless the rocket crashes and explodes.
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Old 09-24-2013, 05:39 AM   #11
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And then there was the logical question of, even assuming he could set up the crash as he did, why would he? The object of the exercise was to capture the little girl, so tossing the SUV she's in around like that would seem to pose potential obstacles to the ultimate success of the plan...
Not to mention the stupid threat with the mask and the smoke bomb. Sheesh, take the mask for herself, tell the girl to hold her breath and close her eyes, then shoot the bastard! Or put the mask on the girl, close one eye and hold your breath, and then throw the bomb out again and shoot the bastard! Or just shoot the bastard through the door while the idiot is counting on his fingers. At least shoot him through the hand!

I really hate the trope of just trusting bad guys who obviously have no morals (kidnapping a little girl) to not hurt people because you do what they say.

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Old 09-24-2013, 06:02 AM   #12
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I enjoyed it, though it was late when I watched it and I think I fell asleep towards the end. I'll rewatch with my wife later.
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Old 09-24-2013, 06:32 AM   #13
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Everything was just too contrived and convenient for my tastes.

Everyone in the right place at exactly the right moment, especially Spader and his bomb-disarming buddy appearing out of nowhere at the park at exactly the right moment to permit the last wire to clipped with 10 seconds left on the countdown clock (really? countdown clock?).

My hope is they stuffed 90 minutes of material into 60 minutes as noted above, to set the hook with any one a dozen manipulative plot devices from every crime drama from the last 10 years, hoping we'll be back. Maybe week 2 will settle in to a fresh new story?
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Old 09-24-2013, 06:41 AM   #14
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Quite a bit like Silence of the Lambs.
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Old 09-24-2013, 07:00 AM   #15
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Cliches or not, we enjoyed it.
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Old 09-24-2013, 07:19 AM   #16
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Ok, I went back and finished it last night laying in bed. Still no go for me. It seems a lot like Revolution, a show I liked and watched for 2/3 of its season, before finally giving up. Liked the concept, but the writing drove me away. I can see that here.

We have the super-omniscient bad guy. I'm tired of that. The super-newbie good guy. I'm tired of that. The husband with the secret. Too many tired old writing gimmicks. It was mildly entertaining, but not enough (IMHO) to keep watching.

I figure Red is a deep-cover agent. Didn't they say he was an FBI guy who suddenly and without warning went bad? The Concierge of Crime? (Really, that's the best they could come up with?) And now he's back for whatever reason, to work with junior agent to stop bad guys? I say he's deep under, and really a good guy.

The timer that stops at 00:10 seconds, the bomb expert who shows up in the nick of time, the bad guy who's standing on a building ledge. I guess if I really liked it, you overlook that. But now I'm pulling an Under the Dumb where I can't let the nits go unpicked.

And the bit where Red won't give up any info unless newbie "tells him something". Waaaaaaay too much Hannibal in that scene for me. And Spader ain't no Hopkins.

I'm not here to threadcrap, really, just share what bothered me. And with a 6-tuner Roamio, I'll keep recording it. Just in case, ya' know.
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Old 09-24-2013, 07:24 AM   #17
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After watching The Dome for the past 3 months anything seems worthwhile.
I liked it.
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Old 09-24-2013, 07:45 AM   #18
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After watching The Dome for the past 3 months anything seems worthwhile.
I liked it.
Well, I gave up on The Dome fairly early on (when the truck crashed into the water tower), and I liked this a lot. It's awfully goofy, yes, but (so far, at least) it's a GOOD goofy, not a let's-mock-the-stupid-viewer goofy.

The Dome was tedious and stupid from the beginning, although I gave it a chance. This is, for me, pop-culture crack. So far.
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Old 09-24-2013, 08:10 AM   #19
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I'm in for now. Not the best pilot I've ever seen but it was entertaining enough for me to keep watching.
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Old 09-24-2013, 09:33 AM   #20
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It has a lot of cliches, but my wife and I still enjoyed it. We miss campy action shows like this and it feels like a slightly meatier Nikita mixed with some Silence of the Lambs. I am sure we will grow weary of it quickly, but for now it's a keeper.

The logistics of the car crash were fine in terms of the crash. As mentioned, it makes no sense that they would actually initiate the car crash, and it's unclear to me why they were the only people on that bridge.

What are the chances that Red is NOT her father?
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Old 09-24-2013, 09:42 AM   #21
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What are the chances that Red is NOT her father?
Oh, I'd say at least 2%. Maybe even 3%.
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Old 09-24-2013, 09:55 AM   #22
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I thought it was completely stupid. I'll just let it sort itself out based on whatever accumulates for me to watch as the season gets underway. I can't see this one lasting, though. It was pretty much a goner for all the advance hype they were giving it because they had cast James Spader in the role. Maybe they can turn stupid into entertaining. You never can quite tell up front.
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Old 09-24-2013, 10:59 AM   #23
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I tuned in because of James Spader. That's the same reason I'll stick around some.

Lots of clichés. The car broadside didn't bug me because I was still complaining to the TV set that a convoy of security vehicles stops in the confined space of the bridge, gets bunched up and makes a U-turn. If you have that many people there to protect the little girl you don't do something stupid like that.

It was a little freaky that on two different shows I watched yesterday I saw an official stab a prisoner in custody in the right side of the neck with a pen.
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Old 09-24-2013, 11:22 AM   #24
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Ratings were quite good.

We'll see what happens next week. I'll give it another chance.
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Old 09-24-2013, 11:49 AM   #25
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Ratings were quite good.

We'll see what happens next week. I'll give it another chance.
Having The Voice as a lead in definitely helped it in the ratings. I'm sure it will drop next week but even a full ratings point drop would be really good for NBC. Hostages on the other hand looks like it could be in trouble. A 1.8 on CBS is not good.
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Old 09-24-2013, 12:22 PM   #26
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Quite a bit like Silence of the Lambs.
Yes. I thought this immediately and started to switch channels since I loathe those movies. However, the intel is about terroristic psychos which is more interesting to me.
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:00 PM   #27
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Actually wasn't so bad. Pleasantly surprised.

Don't really pay much attention to new shows, etc., unless a Tivo ad catches my attention.

Thanks for the heads up.
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:36 PM   #28
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I'm more with Rob on this one. I thought it was pretty good. Some nice twists and some tension. It had it's problems though. Some of the tropes that Astrohip mentioned but also things like the FBI not seeing the obvious trap with the chemical spill and Spader's character was a bit all too powerful, but overall something that has caught my interest.
I pretty much agree with this.

This show was on my radar because I like the idea of Spader portraying a sociopath.

The chemical spill trap was the one thing that nearly pulled me out of the show as it was so stupid but Spader and Boone are making this work for me for now.

I'm in for a few more episodes.
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:39 PM   #29
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What are the chances that Red is NOT her father?
The real question is do they know, or are they making it up as they go along?
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Old 09-24-2013, 03:57 PM   #30
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Well, I gave up on The Dome fairly early on (when the truck crashed into the water tower), and I liked this a lot. It's awfully goofy, yes, but (so far, at least) it's a GOOD goofy, not a let's-mock-the-stupid-viewer goofy.
Yeah, I also gave up on The Dome a while ago, but I thought The Blacklist was pretty good and I'll be sticking with it for now.

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The chemical spill trap was the one thing that nearly pulled me out of the show as it was so stupid but Spader and Boone are making this work for me for now.
Yes, this was VERY DUMB! I'm yelling at the TV, ITS A TRAP!! But of course the good guys say OK, we'll just make a U turn here - no problem!!

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