When I first found out they were making a new CSI, I rolled my eyes so hard I thought they would get stuck in the back of my head. I mean, did we really need another CSI? Couldn’t they come up with new ideas? I mean crap – they had two other CSI spin-offs that crashed and burned so hard, we haven’t seen a few of the stars from those in anything in a while.
So CSI Cyber is here – yet another spin-off from the original with Grissom and his team. This new team, deals in crimes that starts online – so any crime that has a tech component falls in their lap. Now don’t get me wrong, I love a new television show like the next guy, but can we talk about this one for a second?
First thing’s first they could have come up with a different name. CSI Cyber sounds like something you do in the dark with your laptop with the lights off. The cast – I’m not too sure about. The team is led by Simon Sifter (played by Peter MacNicol – remember him from Ally McBeal and Numb3rs). He’s kind of like the suit that deals with the higher ups and the media and thinks he calls the shot with the actual team. Their true leader is Avery Ryan (can I just say whoever thought up that name needs to take an originality pill?) but she is played by Patricia Arquette (Medium and Boyhood). The rest of the team comprises of James Van Der Beek, Charley Koontz, Bow Wow (I don’t care what you say I will not call him Shad) and Hayley Kiyoko.
Where do I start with this one?
It’s only been one episode but already I think the only thing that will carry this show is JVD, Patricia Arquette and the fact that its a part of the CSI franchise. Watching this show had me on twitter going “really? REALLY??”
This show has nothing to do with Crime Scene investigations. Sure, they whip out a few computer gadgets, solved a riddle my twelve year old niece could then ended with the shock value of a baby, strapped in the back of a car that plunges in a river.
The acting was touch and go for most of it, and so was the writing. Sometimes I blink at the screen trying to think if they really had to write Bow Wow as the typical ‘black guy’ who though had hackers issues, talked like all the other thugs out there. And the first thing he does when he comes on screen is to almost get into a fight with Charley Koontz character. But, to his credit, Shad (man I really don’t like calling him that though it’s his name) held his own. He carried off what was given to him with ease that I didn’t expect (let’s face it since that movie where he played basketball I wasn’t holding my breath). But he was impressive.
Patricia Arquette is a little reserved in this one. I know she’s a fantastic actress because I loved her in Medium, but in this role, she just seemed a little one-toned. I really hope that was only first episode jitters because lord knows I can’t stand a whole season of that. Her character had the same sound to her voice–when she’s angry, when she’s sad–there was a bit of light when she was speaking to the baby but that was about it.
James Van Der Beek stunned me as a cop. I guess actors get training to handle guns etc but he looks natural with the weapon, the way he moves in his vest, all those things work. When he’s in police mode, JVD is flawless. When he has longer stretch of information to convey, it’s a tad problematic. But I don’t remember him playing a cop before–he’s done Dawson, that guy from that apartment about a B in that apartment, a really evil Rocky in the NSFW Power Rangers, a serial killer in Criminal Minds…but I’m hoping he gets better.
The rests of the cast I can take or leave. I think the powers that be need to tweak that cast a little bit more because right now they have no chemistry. I get it was just the first episode but all my favorite shows, even though the characters didn’t know each other or were just beginning to work together, there is some kind of glue, some kind of chemistry. I didn’t feel any with this crew. Then again maybe the cast isn’t the problem. They can only do so much with the script they’re given. If the writers would pull themselves out of the trends and do something different it would be much better. I mean let’s face it, just because Bow Wow was a rapper there is absolutely no need for him to say something like “eenie meenie miny mo, catch a gangster by the toe.” I mean what was that all about? Come on now.
It’s really too bad, because CSI Cyber, once you can stop giggling at the name, it has some serious promise. I guess this review didn’t really help you..