Wednesday, September 20, 2006

'Jericho' is Under a Cloud of Suspicion

The tiny town of Jericho, Kansas has no idea what it's in for, and either do viewers. Thanks to the wonderful folks at CBS, I have seen the first two episodes of their new drama Jericho (premieres tonight at 8 p.m.). I'm not really sure what to think about it. Chock that up to my mixed reaction. The series asks you if you're prepared for the next major natural disaster or terrorist attack. With Katrina still fresh on our minds and the 5-year anniversary of 9/11 still weighing on our emotions, the question is timely, but is it too much? The show itself is very good. I was engrossed with the characters, plot, setting, special effects and every other element from the beginning. It has a rockin' soundtrack and an ending that will give you with a serious case of the chills (and the second episode's ending will leave you speechless, angry, and overcome with emotion). So yeah, this is one powerful show. There are a few cliches thrown in, but overall, the writing is solid and the cast is strong. The only problem is the show's premise. A mushroom-cloud explosion in the distance cuts off all forms of communication; leaving the residents of Jericho unsure about what just happened, where and who/how many were affected. Their small town becomes more isolated and more chaotic as they try to deal with the possible realizations. Expect to be at the edge of your seat more than once, to get a little choked up on occasion and to want to hug your loved ones after the closing credits. As with most shows, the second episode is better than the pilot, but even the pilot is good. That is, if you can get past the doomsday scenario and just enjoy the ride. For now, I'm going to buckle myself in and hold on loosely because the first two episodes definitely piqued my interest.

THE 411
PREMISE: A mushroom-cloud explosion in the distance plunges the town of Jericho into chaos
STARRING: Skeet Ulrich, Gerald McRaney, Ashley Scott, Pamela Reed, Sprague Grayden (Joan of Arcadia)
EXECUTIVE PRODUCERs: Jon Turteltaub, Stephen Chbosky and Carol Barbee
EXTRA BONUS: Plenty of chill-inducing moments
BOTTOM LINE: Not for those who are still emotional over 9/11. GRADE: B
PREMIERES: Wednesday, September 20th (TONIGHT) at 8 p.m. (EST) on CBS. For more information, visit

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