Posted April 13, 2016
By SAMANTHA COHEN
There is an overall premise that viewers look forward to when they watch ABC’s Thursday night programming produced by none other than ABC’S golden girl Shonda Rhimes and that is the epic, didn’t-see-it-coming twists and crazy plots.
However, in ABC’S new series “The Catch,” there was zero surprising, gasping moments, just boring spelled out events that create an uninteresting storyline with underwhelming actors.
“The Catch” is a fill in for “How To Get Away With Murder” on ABC’S hugely viewed Thursday night lineup along side “Scandal” and “Grey’s Anatomy.” The show is disappointing compared to all the other Shonda Rhimes programs. Typically everything Rhimes touches is amazing but “The Catch” lacks excitement, drama and creativity.
Based in Los Angeles, Alice Vaughan (Mireille Enos) plays a high-class private investigator whose job is to protect her high-class clients and catch con artists along the way. However, she gets conned herself when her fiance turns out to be a con artist who disappears, taking all her money and important information about her clients.
Enos is best known for her leading role on “The Killing.” Her character on “The Catch” is the complete opposite from the one she plays on “The Killing”. Her fans see Enos in a more glamorous persona rather than a bulky sweater-wearing character. This is a lighter, more fun, character than the dark, somber one on “The Killing.”
There is a “formula” to all Shondaland dramas that center around a type A career woman who has a romantic connection to a handsome leading man. In this case, it is Benjamin Jones (Peter Krause). Alice knows him as Christopher Hall, a successful venture capitalist, her perfect fiance. He is handsome, successful and charming. But there’s a “catch” that we find out about within the first 30 minutes of the pilot. Christopher is actually Benjamin Jones, a member of a team of con artists who include Margot (Sonya Walger), his mistress and boss and Reginald (Alimi Ballard).
The plot is very clear and simple right off the bat. “The Catch” is purely a chase to find Ben and get revenge, nothing exciting or abstract. There were a few seeds planted in the pilot that could potentially blossom into interesting storylines including the genuine feelings Ben has for Alice and how that is going to affect both teams.
It was interesting to see the lack of raw emotion in Alice after finding out whom her real fiancé was and that she herself had be conned. She instantly went into hunt mode to catch him and prove to herself and her colleagues that she was still the best and brightest at her job.
Throughout the first episode, we are introduced to Mr. X, the mystery thief who Alice and her team have been trying to track down. Little do they know Mr. X is none other than Christopher. In the beginning of the episode we see Alice and her team on a mission to finally catch Mr. X.
The audience is shown a shot of Alice standing two feet away from her fiancé who is looking right at her, but she turns her back before she can recognize him. We then see her coming home to tell her fiancé about Mr. X and at this point the audience members are the only ones who are aware of the betrayal while Alice has no clue. The reveal was less than enticing and drama filled compared to Shonda’s other shows.
The second episode moves right into the continuation of Ben’s betrayal and Alice’s drive to not only catch Ben but to prove that she can identify the good from the bad.
It continues to have a lack of focus showing a variety of storylines all in one episode including Ben’s next con job involving a princess and Alice taking on a client (Jeffery Bloom) who was accused and acquitted of killing his much older wife. This storyline mirrors that of Olivia Pope from “Scandal.”
Alice takes the case on to prove she still has what it takes to identify a con artist. The wife killer story has been seen time and time again, but they tried to put a twist on it using Alice’s connection to the betrayal she is currently facing.
Throughout both episodes audience members are shown flashback moments of Alice and Christopher’s relationship from the beginning and the clues she missed along the way. Both Enos and Krause play lackluster characters and have little chemistry than other characters on Rhime’s other programs.
Although Alice’s work environment acts as a perfect engine for a case-by-case adventure each week, after seeing two episodes the show’s balance and lack of focus going from Alice and Ben’s storyline to Alice and Ben’s individual team storylines it creates an unclear view as to how the shows episodes will be structured.
With only two episodes aired under its belt, this show is far from horrible but definitely lacks excitement and drama that the other dominating shows such as “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Scandal” do for ABC Thursday. It will be interesting to see how the show progresses and if it will be able to catch its audience attention.
- “The Catch”
- Created by: Jennifer Schuur and Helen Gregory
- Executive Produced: Shondalands’s Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers
- Developed by: Allan Heinberg
- Starring: Mireille Enos, Peter Krause, Sonya Walger, Rose Rollins, Jacky Ido, Jay Hayden and Alimi Ballard
- Aires: Thursday nights at 10 p.m. Eastern on ABC
- Format: 60 minutes
- Genre: romantic drama
- Viewers: Adults ages 18 and up
- Rating: 3 out of 5 stars