Monday, February 02, 2009

TNT renews 'Leverage'

TNT announced today that they've ordered a second season of "Leverage."

I'm kinda, sorta still watching, but it's now been demoted to "watch while I sort the laundry" status, and/or "it's the last unwatched thing on the DVR hard drive" status. I still like Timothy Hutton and Aldis Hodge, and Beth Riesgraf is growing on me, but the show's too thin to really hold my attention for long.

When I blogged a few of the episodes in December, the reaction seemed to be that people liked it just enough to watch then, but doubted they'd stick with it once the networks got back in business in January. So is anybody else sticking with it? And, if so, what do you think?

39 comments:

Mac said...

I'm still watching, for basically the reasons you indicate -- Hutton, Hodge, and increasingly Riesgraf. I'm probably going to keep watching, because Tuesdays are a light night for me with "House" moved to Mondays (I don't watch Idol).

R.A. Porter said...

I'm enjoying it quite a bit and continue reviewing the episodes, though I worry that the show will start to lose me if the team continues to be successful all the time. Last week, I never felt the tension the team did over giving the mark money because I knew they would win in the end.

The other problem is TNT reordering the episodes and making character interactions feel a bit strange. One week they're a big happy family and the next they haven't learned to trust each other yet. It reminds me of watching The Breakfast Club which I'm convinced to this day got reels out of order.

Michael said...

I gave up on it. I enjoyed the characters, but the general weekly storyline was the same.

Anonymous said...

Totally watching!! One episode included Doctor Who, kink, World of Warcraft and many other excellent one liners.

And bringing your enemy down with the lemon juice on an appetizer that your client degraded you for earlier? Sweet.

It's popcorn blitz fun that you don't want to and shouldn't take seriously.

I do worry that it will get too pat and formulaic, but I laugh at this as much or more than I do at Psych.

-EmeraldLiz

amysusanne said...

I love it because I love the characters, but it's not the kind of love that requires me to watch it in real time or even a timely manner. I tuned in for Hutton, but I've grown to like the rest quite a bit. I'm not really there for the consistency of the relationships from episode to episode (like R.A. Porter, it's just a mess as far as continuity goes), but I like watching them complete the caper of the week. Plus, they all, especially Hodge, tend to bring the funny. It's more of a summer show, but in the age of the DVR if I want it to be a summer show, I can make it a summer show. Or a Sunday at 8am show. Or a Friday at 3am show. Doesn't matter. I'm happy for its renewal.

Archie said...

It's an interesting show - you don't really feel that motivated to start watching the episode - but once you do, you're decently drawn in.

One complaint I have with it is that it is relatively slow on the action etc in the first half and then things speed up a lot going towards the end. The characters are actually enjoyable, the dialog is catchy - I actually like all the characters, not just Nate or Sophie...

Good show, but I'm glad they also have almost immediate re-runs of episodes.

And to what Mac is saing - yeah, what's up with every channel putting ALL shows at the same time??? I enjoy GG but usually prefer to watch it in between Big Bang Theory and HIMYM .... so fitting House in seems impossible.

Bobman said...

It's not bad, it's definitely usually sitting on the DVR until a boring night or, as you mention, chores. Not appointment viewing, but decent bubble gum fun for when I'm in the mood.

Matt said...

It continues to be good weekend afternoon fare. And yes, the Dr. Who jokes made me giggle. The arc they've tried to introduce (Nate's a drunk, and has/had a thing with Sophie) isn't really working, but it's still decent trash.

And yes, Mondays are a mess, and Fridays actually heading that way with the FNL/Dollhouse/Monk pileup at 9 PM.

Taleena said...

My Hubby and I have a rule that unless we are purposefully saving something (Feasting on Waves comes to mind) anything that sits on the DVR for over a week is dropped from the roster. Life is too short and we have Netflix.

We gave Leverage two chances on the hope that it would be a caper-esque Burn Notice or Hustle. When we picked watching the rest of Kit Kitteredge over Leverage the first time and Futurama repeats the second time it was axed.

M.A.Peel said...

It would be fun if USA and TNT would allow a Leverage/Burn Notice crossover. Let Nate and crew go down to Miami and stumble into the middle of one of Michael's COTW. Interesting matchups: Nate and Michael, Fi and Sophie, Sam and eveyone else.

Andrew said...

The problem is the good stuff is just enough to keep me coming back, but I hate myself a little bit for it. The episode on the plane from maybe two or three weeks ago was awful, but the elements with Hardison going undercover at the office and ingratiating himself with the other employees was awesome.

I think the biggest overall problem is that the team is so infallible. Even on a show like House where you know they will solve the mystery, there is some tension in figuring out HOW they will solve the mystery. With this the solutions always seem so light and the plans so spelled out that I am never left wondering how they will pull themselves out of things.

Can it just be the Hardison Show?

Bobman said...

The episode on the plane from maybe two or three weeks ago was awful,

God, I had blocked that out, but the ridiculous landing on the bridge thanks to some last second BS hacking was almost too much for me to take.

Eric said...

In other scheduling news, can I assume that ABC Family declining to renew Kyle XY is the stake in the heart of The Middleman?

emperorhand said...

I gave up on it after a few episodes since the entire show feels like a poor man's Hustle. The wit, the flash, the sparks that the latter show has aren't present in Leverage. I know that the characters in Hustle are going to succeed in their con but the enjoyment is in the execution. With Leverage, it simply feels too much like an also-ran.

Rick said...

Exactly as promised, once Lost, BSG, & others started back up, this was dropped. Nothing against it, I just have better things to give my tv time over to.

Kensington said...

I had zero interest conceptually but find Gina Bellman so sexy that I wanted to give it a shot. Never did, but if they're making Dr. Who references, I might have to finally give it a look.

Sleepyhead said...

I finally got around to watching the pilot (!!). All the other episodes were immediately deleted from the DVR.

Leverage THINKS it has all the style, slickness and slight-nod cool of Ocean's 11 and Hustle.

Leverage ACTUALLY has all the stiff performances, terrible effects, and "realism" of "Hercules: The Legendary Journeys". But Hercules knew what it was, and the writing was way better.

Anonymous said...

I DVR-ed a few episodes based upon the fact that you were covering them. This is yet another procedural with characters who have little understanding of their profession, even if that profession is the grift. I got the impression that the writers were more concerned with placing quirky characters in episodic situations so that they could say clever things to one another than writing a show about true grifters with hearts of gold. (And again, just like with "Lie to Me," the team seems to have a huge budget.). Unfortunately, this show doesn't seem to have the charm of "Hustle," so I stopped watching after a single episode. Oh, well.

jim treacher said...

We get it: Corporations are bad.

belinda said...

Yup. No longer watching weekly, unless it happens to be on while I'm doing things around the house. I appreciate these types of shows, but the cons they write up are too unimaginative (Hustle I think does a much better job of this, except for the season when they're in the states) to keep my interest as a fun nonthinking type show. And Hutton and Kane's hair were starting to grate on me.

Though, I did enjoy Voodoo in it. He gives the bit of comedy into the show that's much needed to cover up the boring cons.

Beth said...

I'm seeing the character relationships developing, so that's keeping me on board. Plus--the fun. I'm not asking much: just be more entertaining than a lawyer or cop show--OK! For the thinky-thoughts, BSG, Heroes, Lost, etc.

Karen said...

I know it's not good, or good for me, but I like the characters--actually, all the characters, even Elliot--so I'm still in.

There are just enough good lines now and then to keep me giggling, too.

I don't fret too much over the plots. If I did, I'd have stopped watching House ages ago.

Mary Ann said...

I've stuck with it, though it is a borderline show for me and may get dropped if anything else makes its way into my TV rotation. There are at least a few good lines every episode (usually courtesy of Hodge) and the capers are reasonably entertaining. I agree with R.A. Porter that the show would be improved if the team was occasionally unsuccessful, and the hints at a Nate-Sophie pairing do nothing for me, but overall the show works as mindless entertainment.

paulf said...

I'm watching, and enjoying.

I wish they'd air the episodes in something resembling the original order though.

Kensington said...

"I wish they'd air the episodes in something resembling the original order though."

Oh! See, now that sort of thing drives me nuts? Why does these networks try to out think the creators? Show the darn things in their proper order!

Maura said...

I'm not particularly interested in the Nate/Sophie pairing either, but what's really bugging me is how Sophie's suddenly freaking out about it. She was so whiny and neurotic in the wedding episode, I wanted to smack her. (I realize that could be a result of the episodes being shown out of order.)

Compare Nate/Sophie to Michael/Fiona on Burn Notice. Michael and Fiona being unsure, their bit of back and forth - all that feels very natural and rings true. But I'm not buying it from Nate and Sophie. Also, what's up with Nate being an alcoholic? Were they telling instead of showing in last week's episode, or have I not been paying attention?

Other than that, I really like Leverage. I watch it every week, and I look forward to it. I like how the characters are developing (except for Sophie's aforementioned neurosis over Nate), and think the cast has nice chemistry. I expect to stick with it.

Otto Man said...

I like it and I'm looking forward to the second go-round.

Motherboy said...

"...but the elements with Hardison going undercover at the office and ingratiating himself with the other employees was awesome...."

OK, I must confess...This entire time--what's it been so far? SEVEN EPISODES--I thought everyone was calling him "Artisan."

Yeah, when Artisan took over that company meeting and even convinced everyone it was his birthday, that was great. "I'll really miss that guy." "I never liked that guy." When no one had ever seen him before in their lives. The birthday hats were the crowning touch.

I really like this show. When I see it in my queue, it's one of the first I watch. I'm glad for the 2nd season.

And I sort of like "Artisan" better.

Anonymous said...

This is sad news. I was looking forward to Timothy Hutton and Aldis Hodge's next projects, whatever they might have been.

D. said...

I'm definitely still enjoying the show. It is far from the best show on television, but it helped me make it through the deadzone of December television, and beats the pants off of any of the procedurals filling up most of the drama slots. And I even enjoy it more than Burn Notice, although I realize I'm in the minority on that front...

Anonymous said...

More than Burn Notice? Now that's some serious talkin.

You can't take my Westen from me. :)

-EmeraldLiz

Joseph said...

You nailed it, Alan - this (and Burn Notice) are my Sunday morning, "watch-while-I-do-laundry" shows.

Matt S. said...

i'm glad they're bringing it back...i was pretty convinced the lack of buzz on this sealed its doom...i liked the first three or four eps which are all that i've seen so far...i've been steadily taping the eps (they fit nicely after eps of Fringe i just have to remember to change the channel at 10) they make a nice alternative to SVU or Without A Trace (which is what I'm currently watching in that hour---I still miss Boston Legal in that timeslot tho to be honest--Eli Stone was a fine replacement then...curse you ABC) but i've never felt like it was a must-watch show the way I do about Burn Notice (which I love and am so happy that that show has caught on the way it has.) Still I do fully intend on catching up on the eps i have left---prob will soon...and I'm generally glad that TNT decided to renew it as it does show confidence.

Also ABC FAM cans Kyle XY---what the hell ABC Fam? they just put out a big dvd of its massive 2nd season which I rented and caught up on so i could be nice and familiar with the 3rd season only to be smacked in the face because its not doing as well as their secret life of an american girl or greek??? gahh they could've at least given it one more try for goodness' sakes.

youcandoit said...

This show has sucked me in, although like others have said, the Nate as a drunk story has to end soon. The main thing that I watch for is the interaction between Hardison, Elliot, and Parker. That is A+ stuff. (Hodge will always be Voodoo to me)

R.A. Porter said...

@youcandoit I certainly *hope* that Nate isn't magically cured of his alcoholism. This isn't Saved by the Bell and he isn't popping caffeine pills.

Last night's episode showed how deep his addiction is rooted and it gives me hope the show will be able to maintain tension and drama through a few seasons.

If anyone's interested, they can read my review of last night's episode here.

justforfun said...

I'm watching and then watching again. I LOVE IT! Like Anonymous, I love the cross references.And, like Mac I started watching because of Hutton and Hodge, but now I'm REALLY liking Riesgraf and Kane. I don't care if they win every week. This is TV. They're SUPPOSED to win every week. It's HOW they figure out how to win that's fun.

chris said...

I am still watching, over and over I'm watching. Please could someone tell me, whose picture is it hanging on the wall, the portrait of founding father (?) they cart out before they blow the place? What Aaron Burr? Benedict Arnold? NoT George Washington or Alexander Hamilton? Help me

R.A. Porter said...

@chris, that's a portrait of Nate, done by Hardison, as the "founder" of the company - Harlan Leverage III.

Anonymous said...

My wife and I are watching and looking forward to a new season! We do Tivo it and watch it when convenient but then again we Tivo every show we watch now. Reminds of Mission Impossible from long ago. Fun. Now great but fun and an escape for an hour a week.