'Chase' review: Loaded with action, missing some heart
In the premiere, the Marshals, which also include Amaury Nolasco, Rose Rollins and Jesse Metcalf, track Mason Boyle ( Travis Fimmel), a felon who escaped from prison five years ago and has been robbing and shooting families as he tries to escape to Mexico.
The action comes fast and furious, but by episode's end more is known (and more sympathy felt) about fugitive Boyle than it is for any of the main characters. The few nuggets dropped in about Kelly Giddish's Annie Frost are heavy-handed and obvious. Oh, a female cop who had a traumatic childhood? It'd be more surprising if she grew up in a normal, happy home.
Other stock characters include wet-behind-the-ears Marshal Luke Watson (Metcalf) and potential love interest Marshal Jimmy Godfrey (Hauser). We are already anticipating the first time Watson has to shoot a fugitive and can't handle the pressure, or the "Moonlighting"-esque dynamic between Hauser and Giddish.
We understand that a debut for a show like this has to be heavy on the action and light on the characters. But we hope the ensuing episodes take time to explore each of the U.S. Marshal team, much like how "CSI" or "The Mentalist" explored their main characters during their first few seasons.
Action will only take the show so far, but eventually viewers need to care about the characters or they don't have a reason to keep watching and "Chase" turns into a show that gets watched as an afterthought, not as appointment viewing.
"Chase" premieres Monday (Sept. 20) at 10 p.m. ET on NBC. Watch this sneak peek trailer below.
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Photo credit: NBC