Breaking In

Breaking In

Starring: Christian Slater, Bret Harrison, Odette Annable
Wednesdays @ 9:30 on FOX

Remember the main character from Reaper (Bret Harrison), the guy forced to work in a job he didn't sign up for, who was in over his head working for the Devil, always had a "why me?" expression?  He plays Cameron Price, forced to work in a job he didn't sign up for.

He has a thing for Melanie Garcia (the luscious if oddly-named Odette Annable), but God forbid he ever tell her how he feels and I bet you're just going to fall over in shock when you find out that she is a really great girl but has this jack-ass boyfriend and she can't seem to realize it.

Then there's Cassius "Cash" Sparks, who's a black guy so we know he's cool but he likes Star Wars and Star Trek so we know he's a nerd but he's a black guy so we know he's cool can both be true, TV????

All of these people, quite dysfunctional in their own way, are also (of course) super-geniuses who work at a high-tech firm that specializes in helping companies improve security by "breaking in" to find their weak spots.  So the group does a lot of thievery, but it's all kosher, see?  (You know, like Wall Street or when your girl asks you to tie her up.)

This company was founded by the mercurial, enigmatic and possibly crazy Oz, played by Christian Slater, who at this point needs a lifetime achievement award for not breaking his Jack Nicholson character once in 22 years.

If I sound a bit dismissive maybe I am, but it's only because I feel so overwhelmingly like I've seen the show before.  In my review of The Killing I point out how familiar concepts and story-lines can seem fresh and vital when presented the right way, but in Comedy people are (more or less) playing themselves, and the Writing and execution has to be spot-on.

I've only seen one episode, and it wasn't bad or anything. I just feel like it would have been awesome in 1999.  Or 2003.  Or even 2007.  But here it is 2011.  I've seen Bret Harrison be a reluctant lead.  I've seen the hot brunette who's so great but can't seem to realize she's dating a loser.  I've seen the cool black guy who's also a nerd.  And gods help me, not only has Christian Slater played the same character in every movie since HEATHERS, but we've already seen him as a possibly-crazy worry-about-nothing spy-esque dude just a couple of years ago!

Comedies always take time to gel, so I have no doubt that Cast can flesh out. The writers may find their footing too. I just hope it won't look like so much else out there.

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