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October 18 2003

Sneak peek at Tru Calling premiere. puts the first 13 minutes of Eliza Dushku's new show online (Flash Player 7 required).

And I was wondering when "Crossing Jordan" was coming back...
I hope the best for Ms. Eliza Dushku. Really I do. She's bright, talented, and from her voice to her ..well, the rest of her, let's face it she's about the sexiest thing on television this fall. Dushku is an incredible actress, and a dazzling personality. However, the theory that Dushku could read a phone book and make it entertaining? Tru Calling proves she's not quite that good. Tru Calling is about as interesting to watch as the fourtieth viewing of It's A Wonderful Life, the colorized version. I've seen daytime soap operas with more believability, and I've seen religious programming with more humor. I don't know if it's the editing or the writing or the sound, but this show drags like a queen. It drags like my last cigarette. Watching a comedian die on stage is less painful and humiliating. I was looking forward to commercial interruptions. That's how bad it was (which I'm sure the advertisers really like). Tru Calling plays like an afterschool special for grownups. It's depressing, predictable, corny, pretentious, and sucks the life right out of any room playing it. In fact I'm a zombie now after watching this preview. Dushku needs a vehicle. She's born to lead a tv series. This ain't it, and all the people surrounding Dushku on this project should be ashamed of themselves. They had what shoulda been a sure thing: just make Dushku look good and how can you possibly go wrong? Well. They went wrong. The *tongue in cheek* MASTERMINDS behind the Americanization of "Coupling" coulda done more to further Dushku's career - did the producers behind Tru Calling seriously want to jeopardize Dushku's chances of achieving mainstream stardom? Cuz this looks like a purposeful attempt to insure she never works in Television City again. It's a travesty.

Not that Dushku gets off the hook. She performed the role satisfactorily and carries her end of the load, but she's somewhere above phoning it in and somewhere below Cybil Shepherd's performance in Moonlighting. Dushku just doesn't seem to sincerely believe this character, and so her performance doesn't sell us to it. What, is Tru Davies already dead inside? She's just going through the motions of her life like a puppet because after her mom's death she's got nothing to live for? If so, this gives us no reason to tune in. If that's not so, then Dushku never got a handle on who this character is and what honestly drives her to get up every morning. So again, this gives us no reason to tune in. Honestly. If Tru Calling were an improvement on the idea of "Faith the series" (which was basically gonna be a cross between The Fugitive and Renegade let's be fair), I'd jump on the Tru bandwagon and push the show with all I got. I've seen student films that deserve more attention than Tru Calling. There's a reason why series like Strange Luck and First Edition failed. And I LIKED those. Tru Calling needs to get some liposuction to its ass and collagen in its lips fast, or it won't last a season.

And if Crossing Jordon EVER comes back, I'm selling my TV! ...Oh wait I get it, Pro.
I read in an interview with the director that they cut out a lot of running that was originally in the pilot, because it was a little too Run Lola, Run -- but maybe that would've picked up the pace a little itsy bit.

Also, if they want to capitalize on her sexiness, they need to spend a couple more seconds than they did on that "in her underwear" shot. Ok, sorry. Is it objectification if another woman is the one doing the objectifying? Ooops. Bad lesbian. ;-)

I don't think I can be quite as harsh as you, ZachsMind, without having seen the whole thing, but the first thirteen minutes don't bode terribly well. I'd rather see her get Punk'd again, as embarrassing as that was.
If this is an hour long show, taking into account commercial interruptions, opening credits and the like, the end result is 42-48 minutes of actual story. 13 minutes is almost a third of that. Usually if you haven't captured the audience by the teaser, it's game over. I'm not saying Dushku running around in spiderman underwear is necessary. I think the premise itself is a problem, and the writing is not helping. This show has a major identity crisis. It wants to be nighttime soap opera but it also wants to be scifi or horror or romance or.. it's just all over the map and ends up a vague nothing. Joan of Arcadia has the same exact problem. It doesn't know what it wants to be, and ends up being nothing. Objectifying Dushku may not be ethical, but it would have saved the show long enough for them to make a better premise out of it. The teaser consisted of children being snarky at a funeral. Had I been watching it on tv and had no knowledge of Dushku as an actress, I woulda changed the channel. It's game over.
Damn, I was hoping for the better, not the worse.
I watched the original pilot, and it was pretty crap. I'm not expecting the final version to be much better...ah, poor, lovely Eliza. She deserves so much better...

Next fall...
on WB/UPN...

We can dream.

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