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|Index||72 reviews in total|
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Although this certainly won't win any awards and will always draw
comparisons to the BBC's "Hu$tle" and the "Ocean" movies, it makes for
a fun hour of TV watching, carving out a nice niche in American TV.
Timothy Hutton provides an effective counter to the sometimes "devil may care" attitude of his team members as Nathan Ford, a divorced alcoholic who has had difficulty getting over the death of his son, and rightfully blames his old company for not providing the health care he needed to survive. When a desperate executive hires him to recover some stolen airline plans, he takes the job of leading a group of con artists and thieves to retrieve them. However, when the job becomes more than it appears, it's up to Nate to keep the team together and turn the tables. Even though everybody in the group became financially set for life after the first episode, the lure of helping out others keeps them coming back for more.
Although we've seen shows like this before ("The A-Team" is the closest comparison), there's something lighter and more fun about this hi-tech redux of a group of cons helping out those who have no one to turn to. The characters grow on you as the show progresses, most notably high-tech uber-geek Alec Hardison (Aldis Hodge) and the goofy, lithe, acrobatic Parker (Beth Riesgraf). Nate's on again-off again repartee with Sophie Devereaux (Coupling's Gina Bellman) has hit both highs and lows in the show. Some consider Eliot Spencer (Christian Kane), as the team's "muscle," to be a weak point in the show. However, there is a good rapport between Eliot and Hardison, similar to Jack Cates and Reggie Hammond from the "48 Hrs." movies.
Overall, it's a good addition to the TNT library of shows. Not it's best show, but it's certainly worthy of another season.
Leverage might after a first show look like a series replica of Oceans
Eleven with even the same generic music attached to some scenes, it
fares deeper into a storyline you might expect being left on the
cutting room floor of that same movie. Revenge being a large element of
the series and changing plots, schemes and situations putting a viewer
on the wrong foot this show delivers what all the polish and high-speed
actors in forenamed picture couldn't actually deliver: credibility!
Many TV fans were loving a show like Thief (2006) but for the big audience that's called TV this is too grimy and realistic. Don't expect somebody to get actually hurt in "Leverage". The grimy and therefor risky aspect of the show has been rooted out carefully and in comes a storyline that could have been a "A-team" episode. Maybe halfway the season Colonel Decker will start chasing the headliners of this show but until then it's a risk-free show that won't be canceled.
Agreed, whoever thought of this format was far from a genius (the genius invented "Thief 2006") but he'll have a job for that much longer mixing Oceans Eleven, Thief and the A-team together in a show that doesn't offend, hurt, kill or mame people and yet stays funny and interesting to watch.
Leverage is a good TV-show among other good TV-shows but will eventually wind up in decay like other good TV-shows will. In one more season it will be more boring to watch then the new episode of Prison Break. Maybe it will generate the same cult status and devotion with viewers they will keep watching and it survives 2 seasons more. I hope so since this quiche of TV-shows is the most entertaining and relaxing show i've seen this year...
9/10 (won't last 2 seasons)
P.S A delight to see Gina Bellman again after a brilliant role in Coupling. She's a under-appreciated actress if u ask me.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is a show that I should, by rights, love - it's got a talented
cast, witty capers, and above-average production values thanks
partially to Executive Producer Dean Devlin (STARGATE, INDEPENDENCE
DAY). Gina Bellman as scam artist extraordinaire and inept stage/film
actress Sophie Devereaux, Aldis Hodge as offbeat superhacker Alec
Hardison, Christian Kane as hunky Hard Man Eliot Spencer and Beth
Riesgarf as borderline-feral burglar Parker all splendidly inhabit
their gimmicky roles and make them work as actual living, breathing
people you're happy to spend an hour each week with.
Unfortunately, it *also* has that Frothy Comedy-Drama Kryptonite known as "The Oscar-Winning Lead Actor Who NEVER Lets You Forget It" in Timothy Hutton. Yes, he can *certainly* act - he proves it to you every chance he gets, and the movie or series he's in ends up getting thrown seriously off-kilter by all the opportunities the Producers or Director give him to remind us What a Great Academy-Award Winning Actor He Is. Here he's not *just* a crack ex-insurance investigator turned heroic criminal mastermind - oh, no, THAT wouldn't give him enough to do! He's *also* lost his son to his heartless former insurance company employers, shares a strong attraction with Sophie which neither of them have acted on past a kiss or two, is divorced though his ex-wife still loves him enough to be jealous of his never-consummated relationship with Sophie, has a highly-ambivalent relationship with his small-time Irish gangster father, and often gets to (over)play some highly showy character or another in their Scam O' the Week. Oh, and did I mention he's a drunk who has climbed on and fallen off the wagon more times than NYPD BLUE's Andy Sipowicz...?
The saddest part is, Hutton himself seems to recognize his acting issues at some level, and sometimes he can get past all the Chances to Act he gets and simply inhabit a character brilliantly. His Archie Goodwin in the NERO WOLFE pilot "The Golden Spiders" and in the two-part episode "Death of a Doxy" were as spot-on a portrayal of Rex Stout's affably wiseacre private eye as I've ever seen (which is what makes his overly manic, mannered Archie in most of the rest of the series *so* frustrating!). Here, his Nate Ford will occasionally simply switch off all the Grief and the Yearning and the Drinking and the Schticking and just be a *very* smart modern Robin Hood, leading his criminal Merry Men & Women to do slightly bad things for really good reasons - and having a blast doing it.
THAT is the show I hoped I'd get - and want to see more of. Hutton needs to pack away his Inner Oscar for keeps - because until he does he's a drag on every show and movie he's involved in.
After watching two seasons of Leverage, it seems appropriate to review
it. I enjoyed every moment of watching it and it's not a bad show at
all. Some cons were easy to guess, others were not. Interesting
characters, but I haven't learnt much about most of them so far. There
was some back story to Nathan Ford's character and to Parker too, but
very little on the rest. This makes it difficult to relate to them and
the impact of the cons less effective on me as a viewer.
I have to admit, I watched the British show Hustle first, and I must agree with another reviewer and say that Hustle is better. So if you like and enjoy Leverage, watching Hustle is a must! In my opinion, the cons in Hustle are much more elaborate/intricate and the narrative is played out really well. I'm sure other reviewers have mentioned how the pauses in Hustle are entertaining and when a character breaks the fourth wall, it's amusing, intriguing and it's like you're being taught how to be a grifter - which is simply fantastic! This also brings out the personalities for each of the characters. I have to say the characters in Hustle are more unique than those in Leverage - especially when it comes to the team leaders. I prefer the cocky Mickey Stone (from Hustle) with a bad past and something to hide than the tragic hero that Nate Ford is. NOT saying that I don't like Nate, but with him already beating the insurance company that hurt his son, it doesn't seem like there could be more development in that area.
Nevertheless, Leverage is a good show and I only hope to find out more about Parker and Eliot in particular. If you enjoy watching the real bad guys go down, and seeing justice served (especially the rich and corrupt), this is definitely something that will brighten up your night.
I stumbled across this series by accident. It's got Gina Bellman in it,
who starred in one of my all-time favorite shows: Coupling So I gave it
a try and watched the pilot. Six episodes later, I am sort of hooked.
Sure, it's corny sometimes. Sure, all of the "good guys" have sheer unlimited knowledge of practically everything, including languages from Chinese to Serbian.
Sure, they have one of those "magic" computers that can tap into everything into fractions of a second.
Sure it's absolute BS if you think about it.
And sure, the plot usually has holes to make any swiss cheese proud.
But first I am a sucker for this kind of show and secondly it's just fun to watch anyway. It probably will never get a Globe, but I can't wait to see the next episode nonetheless.
This could have been a great show had they not constantly been beating the anti corporate drum. The message was tedious and disingenuous. It got worse each succeeding season. We enjoyed the show when it first came out. I am a big fan of Gina Bellman from her Coupling days on the BBC. The interaction between the characters was good but there were many instances where the acting seemed forced. It was especially noticeable from Timothy Hutton. The plots seemed designed to support an anti free market agenda and it's message stopped being "Lets go after bad companies" to "All big companies are bad". We stopped watching at the end of the 2011 season and I am not surprised it was canceled due to lack of interest.
I love the premise of this show. Then again, one of my favorite shows
of the past decade or so was the all-too-quickly-canceled Firefly, and
this show has a bit in common with that thematically speaking. To be
specific, it deals with people doing the "right thing" in an
extra-legal way, so to speak.
But that is where the similarity ends. The aspects of Firefly that made it (in my opinion) great TV are all turned around here to make this very lackluster TV. For example, the crew of Firefly lived in a morally ambiguous territory. Their goal was to simply stay alive and free. Pursuit of that goal lead them into situations in which they had to make a choice. To get what they wanted, they would be required to take from someone else who needed. That was the overarching moral dilemma in that show: is it alright to take from someone else in need to fulfill your own needs? So in short, Firefly presented everyday reality/morality for most people in a fantasy environment.
On the other hand, the cast of Leverage doesn't really face moral dilemmas. Instead, they are like superheros who only do for others with almost no thought of their own welfare. They aren't in need, they are rich. Being rich and without need, they are boring.
And they are superheros in this show, with all of the teenage fantasy ideas that come along with that. The computer guy has access to anything digital he needs without a bead of sweat; the fighter can dispatch anyone of any size without even getting his hair mussed; the thief can go anywhere she likes without even coming close to being detected; and the grifter, despite being the worst actress anyone has ever seen on the stage, never comes close to being discovered when she is on the con.
All in all, this show seems like a great modern Robin Hood premise that was knocked out by some 13 year-old kids who thought it would be really cool to be high tech superheros and stick it to the man. And it would be kind of cool, admittedly...but it isn't very interesting to watch.
Not to go political...well yes, to go political...this show is really emblematic of U.S. political, moral and philosophical thought. Things are black and white, good and bad. There are those who are powerful and those who are not, and what we are all waiting for is a savior. There is none of the reality of life here--that what we are all faced with is our own limited resources, getting by as best we can. Fantasizing about a savior is fun for a minute or two, but I find it far more interesting to explore real life, even in a fantasy scenario, and the moral/ethical/political/philosophical dilemmas we are faced with in real life.
Unfortunately, this show is none of that. It begins and ends with the savior fantasy. Yawn!
I don't remember watching all the TV program of Leverage, but what i
did manage to watch i loved.
I since collected all the series on DVD and i can still watch them over and over again, which to me is very rare and a joy and is never boring.
I loved the characters, their interactions and their development and i think the show could have lasted much longer.
I was a bit disappointed that there would be no more leverage, i think that in some ways it may have went under the radar for a lot of people, i know for a fact that some times i missed it on TV and not because i wasn't interested, but sometimes i did not realise it was back on etc.
I hope that leverage could return, whether with TV series or movie idea and i hope that the team will come together again. But in the mean time i will continue to watch the series over and over and i just found out about leverage books today.
I wish all the actors and crew of Leverage well and thank you its been a joy to watch.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
A Foot in Mouth: Brutally Honest Review.
***Contains Spoilers*** Leverage in my mind is an example of how to make an extremely entertaining, engaging and very fun TV shows with some outstanding casting, very well written characters and some of the quirkiest story lines is a beautifully executed ice cream cone of perfection. Yummy! I was really upset when they cancelled this show after season 5, but I really think they should bring it back! The premise of the show is essentially a group of the 4 best highly skilled criminal operatives in the world ranging from a hacker, grafter, cat burglar and a hitter are brought together under the supervision of an ex-insurance investigator to pull a heist that goes slightly wrong, so then they start to help average everyday people get leverage over large corporations, millionaires, the authorities and pretty much anyone who tries to screw over us honest hardworking everyday people.
One of the most important things for me is not only the portrayal of the characters on screen but the chemistry of the characters, if I am invested in the characters and their mates I don't care what the story is I will watch it, examples: Castle, NCIS, NCIS: LA, NCIS: New Orleans, Person of Interest, CSI, Elementary, Death in Paradise The thing that shines throughout these TV shows is not only a phenomenal cast and the writing, but the relationships between the characters.
Leverage has an amazing cast who play some very lovable characters with their physical, emotional and verbal banter with the backing of their dramatic, flawed and charismatic performances, with a teaspoon of deliciously funny and a dollop of whipped quirkiness and not forgetting a chocolate flake this show has everything you want. Except the flake that's mine!
After watching the first episode of this show I knew I was hooked. The first show was amazing, at first I did not know what this show was about because I came in half way through the show but hell thats all that it took to get me. In my English class we were studying a book by Steven Johnson called everything bad is good for you and we had to compare it to a television show my was of course television unfortunately it did not support Johnson's main idea of the book but you know what.... Damn Johnson this show is awesome it has technology, wit, intelligence, comedy but most of all it has poise. The characters I really enjoy the missions that this leverage team goes on because it does show good in what we believe bad people are. This new day version of the the A-team will sweep you off your feet and blow your mind away.
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