Midseason TV procedurals are here. In 2019, one that promised to entertain while throwing in some pulse-pounding action is Whiskey Cavalier. Debuting on ABC, this show is a copycat by many of its tropes, but also “new” in others.
Whiskey Cavalier, Pilot (2019) TV Review
He may be a tough FBI agent, but when it comes to his heart, Will ‘Whiskey’ Chase (Scott Foley) is a softie. He’s just been dumped by the love of his life, and it’s playing with his emotions. But when it comes time to his job, Will shakes it off, and steps into his role of responsibility seriously.
Just when his boss decides Will needs to take some time, he ends up assigned to find Edgar Standish (Tyler James Williams), a man who hacked Homeland. While on his mission, Will meets Frankie Trowbridge (Lauren Cohan). Feisty and not without her own agenda, Frankie and her CIA training is about to give Will a bit of a challenge.
In the aftermath of Castle’s demise, I cannot help but feel like ABC is desperate to find its replacement. Take Two couldn’t capture that vibe, so this new show seems like it might hope to recapture some of the wit that was Detective Kate Beckett and Richard Castle’s rapport. Created by David Hemingson, the series, he says, is influenced by Moonlighting. While the love-hate, will-they-won’t-they banter does play into this script (like Moonlighting), I think this one has some wrinkles to iron out.
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Speaking only to my TV experience, I don’t think any network (in the near future) will find their Castle and Beckett. There was just something about those two that works TV magic. Foley and Cohan are good together, and do share some humorous strings of banter, but overall, they’ve got nothing that stands apart. My caveat to this, which I apply to 90-some percent of the TV shows I try, is the fairness meter which is 3-5 episodes. This script takes a few too many liberties (for my preference) in the characteristics of our two leads to make it endearing.
If I’m being honest, this is entertaining. It’s the kind of show I’ll watch another episode (or two of), and suspect come away with warmer feelings. The cast is fantastic, and also includes Josh Hopkins and Ana Ortiz, who many will recognize from Ugly Betty. Beyond this, the pilot story does a good job of co-mingling humor with some adventure, and I like how it works the plot into the team’s integration.
Whiskey Cavalier has the globe-trotting appeal of the Jason Bourne movies with the humor of your favorite TV comedy. For this viewer, that’s a win-win.ABC rolls out a new comedy in the will-they-won't-they tradition of 'Castle.' How does it rank for you? #WhiskeyCavalier, Pilot – A New Comedy That Tries to be 'Better' Click To Tweet
Content: there’s some sexual innuendo, and some minor profanity. Things explode, and bad guys get shot. The show is TV14.