TV Recap: Intelligence, Series Premiere

Intelligence_S1_CBS poster

Plot: U.S. Cyber Command intelligence operative agent Gabriel Vaughn (Josh Holloway) uses a microchip implanted in his brain to protect the United States from its enemies.

I’m going to be completely honest here, the only reason why I wanted to watch CBS’ new drama Intelligence in the first place is Josh Holloway. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen him on LOST and I really missed watching him on my television screen on a weekly basis. Holloway was so great as Sawyer that a very tiny part of me thought that this show might not be so terrible … but the show turned out to be worse than what it led on.

Photo Credit: CBS
Photo Credit: CBS

Before I rant about the problems I had with the show’s pilot, I want to put out there that it had serious potential. A drama about computerized human operative agent is a really cool idea. The more I think about what I wanted it to be, the more I think of a 2014 version of Alias — only Holloway’s character Gabriel is a bad guy that you want to route for. He has the same insanity as Walter White (Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad) or Francis Underwood (Kevin Spacey, House of Cards), with the snark of Sawyer from LOST. That would have been a character and a show worth watching.

But instead, we had Holloway’s character Gabriel, who was just so uninteresting, it was almost laughable. I couldn’t get over the way he put his finger to his face when he was “getting something” (i.e. searching the web with his brain). So lame. He wasn’t snarky either which was extremely disappointing. Holloway is so much better than this computerized dud.

While Gabriel was pretty dull, he was not, by a wide margin, as bad as his support — especially the two lead women, Lillian (Marg Helenberger) and Riley (Meghan Ory). These women were boring with a capital B. Out of the two of them, you would think that Riley would be somewhat intriguing since her role in the show was to protect Gabriel, but she does a terrible job at that. Apparently, they said that she was a part of the Secret Service at one point before her new role at the U.S. Cyber Command, but if I were the President, I wouldn’t want this girl protecting me. For half the show, she essentially stood by as Holloway looked out for himself and the other half she was contained in a room by herself. She was absolutely useless. Lillian had no expression on her face whatsoever, but at least her role as a stone wasn’t that far off compared to Riley’s. It was really pathetic, but kind of funny to watch.

Hate to say this because I wanted to give this show the benefit of the doubt, but Intelligence is not worth watching. There’s nothing that makes it stand out from the billions of dramas that deal with secret spies, private investigators, and government agencies. As for Holloway, I sincerely hope when this show gets canceled he hops on a breakout series. He’s a good actor, he just needs to be in the right role in order to excel.