With Person of Interest, Parks & Rec, The Blacklist, Blindspot, Scandal, and Quantico just some of the shows starting or returning in the UK over the next few weeks, Unpopcult’s dancecard is pretty much at full capacity. So we’re going to need to be selective.
We will, however, be making time for Limitless, the TV adaptation of the bonkers-but-entertaining 2011 film about a wonder drug which enables the user to maximise his or her potential. Jake McDorman is your man for the enhanced abilities, using them to help FBI agent Debra Morgan from Dexter. And Bradley Cooper, recurring only, reprises his role from the film as Eddie Morra. (Incidentally, when we were watching Alias all those years ago, did any of us anticipate that the dude occasionally playing the lovelorn journalist was going to end up as the biggest star of the whole cast? I certainly didn’t.) Limitless received lukewarm reviews when it started in America, but Unpopcult’s friend e assures us that it’s worth watching, and that it really gets going after a few episodes. Besides which, I actually like procedurals with a silly backstory (see The Blacklist, Blindspot, etc.). So I’ll review the first double-bill, and see how we get on after that (Wednesday 17 February, Sky 1, 9pm).
I’m also going to be watching, if not reviewing, American Crime Story, FX’s true crime anthology, which in its first season offers a dramatic reconstruction of the O.J. Simpson murder case of 1994-95. The show has an astonishing cast: Cuba Gooding, Jr., as the Juice, plus Nathan Lane, David Schwimmer, John Travolta, Courtney B. Vance, Bruce Greenwood, Sarah Paulson, Connie Britton, and others. Glee guys Brad Falchuk and Ryan Murphy are among the exec producers, and the show debuted in America about a fortnight ago to extravagant critical praise. It’s good to see the BBC investing again in quality US drama, and as a bonus it isn’t hanging on to the show for a year or so before showing it (tonight, BBC Two, 9pm).
But we’re not bothering with Heroes Reborn, the revival of a show which should have been put out of its misery long before the axe fell. Our CJ was one of the most stoic defenders of the original Heroes, and not even she is going to be watching (Tuesday 16 February, 5star, 9pm).
Nor with Sky Atlantic’s new HBO import Vinyl, which was simulcast in the middle of the night with its American debut, and appears later this evening in its regular slot. Martin Scorsese – who also directs the pilot – and Mick Jagger are among the exec producers of this drama, set in the music industry of the 1970s. It’s had reasonable reviews in America, but it looks a little bit TV-for-boys to me. Still, I’m listening if anyone wants to tell me I’m missing out (tonight, Sky Atlantic, 9pm).
And finally, season 2 of Better Call Saul is available tomorrow on Netflix.