Jimmy Smits is the head of a sprawling Cuban-American family in the deep south of Florida. Dubbed as “an Hispanic Dallas” his clan run a rum and sugar business. It all sounds like a coffee-coloured version of Brothers and Sisters. But few of the characters are as likable as the sentimental Walker family.
Despite the inclusion of strong performers like Rita Moreno, much of the opening episode is quite laboured. And although it is penned by a Cuban-US scriptwriter this feels a lot like Cubans living an American Dream, just with a telenovela style. In fact had it been given a little bit more salsa in the opening episode it might have made me want to return for a second ep. Maybe it will hit its strides once the pilot has finished setting up its mammoth cast.
Journeyman is best described as a new Quantum Leap. Kevin McKidd (yet another UK acting American) is a newspaper reporter in San Francisco who travels through time. How he achieves this isn’t altogether clear in the opening ep. But stepping into a cab isn’t recommended if you’re heading to California.
All of the time travel sequences, in which he lands back in the 1980s, bamboozle our hero, and he tries to rationalise them as memory lapses.
On initial viewing this was somewhat frustrating until a twist began to unfold in the second half of the pilot. It was thenthat I became more intrigued at what Journeyman had in store. Maybe I will travel back to my TV for a second dose.
James Roday stars as a guy who, since childhood was trained by his father (Corbin Bernsen) to have a photogenic memory and heightened observational skills. By adult life its all second nature to him.
So much so that, following helpful police tip offs, he falls into a job as a Psychic Detective. He pulls in pal Dule Hill to assist, a role that is effectively his “straight man.”
Psych is light in tone, an easy mix of comedy and mystery that sits right at home beside Monk.
Roday is so assured in this affable role, he comes across as more Ben Stiller than Ben Stiller.
With the series already in production on series two, the signs are good that this will hold up as entertaining summer fare.
Cane premieres 8:30pm Wednesday Nov 28
Psych premieres 9:30pm Tuesday December 4
Journeyman premieres 8:30pm Thursday December 6