ABC dabbled with the shorter seasons that are common on cable and overseas with the eight-episode "Red Widow." The first two aired as part of a two-hour premiere, meaning the total Season 1 commitment is less than two months. But will viewers get behind this saga of a mob wife who learned just how deep inside her husband was only after he was gunned down in their driveway in front of their young son?
Considering how short the run will be, there wasn't much going on in these first two hours. After Marta's husband was shot down, she discovered a massive debt he owed to a local mobster. When the mobster assured her he had nothing to do with the death of her husband, he also made it very clear that she and her children were now responsible for his debt.
She recruited a down-on-his-luck divorced man by flirting with him, stealing his motorcycle and then trying to convince him to help her. He initially balked, but after she confessed to who she is, what she did and why she needed him that he agreed to help. After all, he's got nothing else to lose.
Critics seemed to agree that "Red Widow" isn't great television, but Television Without Pity took pity on it and said it might be worth sticking around just because it's such a short season. USA Today, on the other hand, says simply to skip it, calling it "tragic for all involved," and a nonsensical mess.
"Red Widow" settles into its normal 10 p.m. EST timeslot starting next Sunday on ABC.
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