It’s taken a while, but I am indeed back to wrap off my Upcoming Pilots assessment. There are two left on my personal docket, neither of particularly standout. At least SuperGirl has the defense of being a CW genre show (and frankly, at least it has potential). The focus of this post, The Player? It fills this year’s “Ugh, why did they make this?!?” slot.
The biggest problem with The Player is that there was no originality. Yes, technically, the show runs with a fresh premise (the uber rich needed something new to gamble on, so a secret organization allows for gambling on the outcomes of situations – kidnappings, attempted murders, etc – based on the calculations and interventions of a supercomputer, with bonus Wesley Snipes for good measure). But the show itself gives every appearance of being a travel advertisement for Vegas, and let’s be honest – Las Vegas(2003-8) did it better.
A friend of mine said she’s interested in this for the pretty faces and Las Vegas scenery, and I can respect that. But I’m not sure it’s worth the time for that kind of payoff (one thing with being a parent, my free time is a lot more valuable to me than it was two years ago). While the premise should be interesting, the characters came across as simply going through the motions rather than actually inhabiting the world. It’s cliches and not-quite-fits, and the most interesting of the bunch was the kidnapping victim. I’d bet dollars to doughnuts that she won’t be a regular.
Is this pretty action flick material? Sure. But if it were a movie, I’d wait until it aired on network TV rather than paying $12 in theaters. It’s possible that it will settle into a groove as the season goes on, but I’d rather not be the fandom canary testing out this particular coal mine.