Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Bounty Hunters

I had the opportunity tonight to see THE BOUNTY HUNTERS, a one-hour pilot intended for CBS' 2005-2006 fall schedule. It didn't go, and I have to wonder why, as it's a pretty decent pilot with good performances and action scenes. One thing not in its favor is that it's a light action/adventure series, which the networks don't seem to be interested in. THE BOUNTY HUNTERS is the kind of series that might have made it to the air in 1985, but today everything has to be dark and trendy and realistic. A show about a family of bounty hunters that tracks bad guys and puts them in jail is just not in vogue, and I think we're the poorer for it.

THE BOUNTY HUNTERS stars veteran Robert Forster (an Oscar nominee for JACKIE BROWN) as Jerry, a widower who has brought his adult sons Colin (David Cubitt, now a regular on MEDIUM) and Matty (Ryan Browning), into the family business. Also a member of Jerry's team is Tess (Lauren Holly of PICKET FENCES fame), his girlfriend, who handles the finances, but itches to get back into the field.

Since THE BOUNTY HUNTERS is an Aaron Spelling production, it has a lot of warmth and humor to go along with the action, which is kind of impressive in the hands of stunt coordinator Spiro Razatos, who's among Hollywood's best. The show opens with a funny chase through a house where the guys are chasing their subject, a college wide receiver dragging behind him the chair he's cuffed to.

If CBS had bought it, I imagine THE BOUNTY HUNTERS would have crossed the action of T.J. HOOKER with the family values of 7TH HEAVEN. Except, of course, this family packs heat. And considering how much time they spend in the garage fixing up old muscle cars, I assume plenty of car chases were in the show's future.

Too bad the series didn't get picked up. It seems tailor-made for CBS' more traditional lineup, and Forster, who had just come off the short-lived KAREN SISCO, could have used a hit.

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