NBC’s ‘Ironside’ Early Preview

NBC’s latest foray into the crime-drama genre comes in the form of Ironside, a remake of a 1960s detective show. It follows Robert Ironside (Blair Underwood), a tough detective from New York City, who is confined to a wheelchair after an on the job shooting. Along with his team of hand picked detectives, he solves the toughest crimes in the city without letting his disability get in the way. Although television is no doubt over saturated with crime dramas and procedurals, ‘Ironside’ manages to infuse a bit of heart and intrigue into the all too familiar formula.

When we first meet Detective Ironside we get a sense that his approach to police work is a bit unconventional. At time, Underwood’s portrayal comes off a bit tacky, as if he’s trying too hard to be tough, but as the pilot unfolds we see that maybe underneath that hard exterior, he is still very much trying to deal with his feelings about being confined to a wheelchair. A bright spot among the cast is Brent Sexton (from The Killing) playing Ironside’s ex-partner Gary. In flashbacks that are beautifully understated, we get a glimpse at the history between the two and the events that lead us to see the characters in their current lights. The flashbacks are weaved seamlessly into the story helping, rather than disrupting, the narrative. Another plus is the rest of the ensemble of detectives that work with Ironside. Virgil (Pablo Schreiber, aka “Pornstache” on Orange Is The New Black), Holly (Spencer Grammer), and Teddy (Neal Bledsoe) are all introduced to the audience with just enough background to make them intriguing. The “family” dynamic amongst the team that is so common in long running police procedurals is definitely present and the cast meshes well together. The way the case of the week unfolded had a bit more flair and feeling than the often clinical feel you might find on, say, Law & Order. 

Ironside has a strong lead and supporting cast of characters and their background stories seem to hold an important place in where the show will go week by week. If nothing else, the cast itself is reason to tune in and give this one a go. Though the television waters are murky with crime dramas and procedurals, Ironside might have the stamina to wade through.

The pilot of Ironside can currently be viewed on Hulu.

Posted on September 13, 2013, in Drama, Hulu, Network Television, Primetime and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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