Promise of Darkness
Episode 1.5 - Aug. 28, 2005
After the previous week's heavy dose of Lee
Tergesen as undercover Eddie Drake, this episode was a
disappointment -- and not just because of Lee's relative lack of
This episode epitomizes a lot
of what has been bad about "Wanted": Overkill in the violence
department, inconsistent character development and poor writing.
Lee had some fine moments, but the episode was
doomed once the assignments were handed out and Eddie Drake was left
behind. Lee/Eddie makes scenes come alive and the actors around him
better. Subtract Eddie Drake from the action, and well ... you have
This week, the task force was on the trail of a
child rapist-and-killer who had recently escaped from prison. When
Lt. Rose divides up the team to chase down leads, he leaves Drake
behind with the tech wizard, Rodney Gronbeck (Josey Scott).
So while the others are doing real police work,
Drake mops the floor and trades barbs with
Gronbeck. A later scene in a surveillance van also provides some
character development for Eddie Drake:
Drake proclaims why he won't have kids: "They
either grown up to be a Martin Beckwith [the bad guy] or theyíre
killed by one."
Gronbeck: "Thatís a really positive outlook on life."
Drake, while eating a sandwich and pickle: "Iím just saying
... the world we live in..."
Gronbeck: "With all the tuna salad you stuck your pickle in
over the years who knows how many kids you got running around out
there, un-be-know-anst to you."
Drake disgustedly discards his half-eaten pickle and corrects
Gronbeck's Southernese: "Unbeknownst..."
Gronbeck doesn't back down: "Itís un-be-know-anst where I come
Lee: "Where do you come from?"
But before we learn any more, the action picks up again with a
lively gunshot to the head at the house they're watching.
Most of the episode is focused on the Jimmy McGloin character's rage
over the crime, the criminal, pornography and his own victimization.
It's not subtle, to say the least.
The series had aimed to spotlight the surreal,
schizophrenic nature of police work at this level -- showing how the
unspeakable brutality of the job overwhelms domestic life. Similarly
the show depicts law enforcement professionals having to act as a
team to get the job done, but then flinging wisecracks and insults
at one another during their down time.
"Wanted" succeeds better in the
latter regard, and would do better to stick to that formula.
Especially with the chief wise-ass, Eddie Drake, taking the lead.