Following the format of Fox's "The Following," CBS kicked off "Hostages." The show has a 15-episode first season, no matter how it does in the ratings. Plus, in a departure from typical CBS fare, "Hostages" features a singular narrative that will run through the season. And it looks like it's going to feature a lot of glowering from stars Toni Collette and Dylan McDermott, mostly directed at one another.
Collette plays Dr. Ellen Sanders, a surgeon who's been selected to perform an operation on the President of the United States. The night before the surgery, McDermott and his men break into her house and take her family hostage. McDermott portrays FBI agent Duncan Carlisle, so why is he trying to have Dr. Sanders kill the president? That's one of the lingering questions, as Carlisle seems to think he's doing something bad to accomplish something good.
As for the good doctor, Sanders proved that she's not just going to go along with this, despite the leverage Carlisle has on her. She had the president actually injected with blood thinners, forcing his surgery to be postponed. At the press conference afterward, that she knew Carlisle would be watching, Sanders was asked if she was upset or discouraged.
Looking directly into the camera, Sanders said, "No. I don’t give up that easily." In other words, your move, Carlisle.
HuffPost's Mo Ryan is still feeling out the new drama. She said she liked the leads, but is that enough? "As for the rest of the characters, they're a standard-issue broadcast network family so far," she wrote. "And that's where ‘Hostages’ will stand or fall: If we don't care about the people in the title group, there's not much inducement to continue watching beyond week 2 or 3.”
Entertainment Weekly's Jeff Jensen wasn't hooked just yet, either. "Where the hell does this go from here?” he was left wondering. "[It’s an] admirable risk for CBS, which is stepping outside its comfort zone of procedural, formulaic police dramas with this edgy serial. 'Hostages' could be an involving thriller-soap falling somewhere along the '24'-'Homeland'-'Scandal' axis…if it doesn't get in the way of itself.”
Find out where "Hostages" goes next as the serial drama continues on Mondays at 10 p.m. ET on CBS.
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