#Action, #Cinema, #streaming
Feb 14, 2022
Review: Reacher (Series 2022)
Frequent listeners of The House of Mystery on NBC may remember that I’m not much into watching streaming series television. I prefer film as an art form and enjoy a smaller time investment.
With that said, I knew that I would at least watch the first couple of episodes of Reacher. Reacher is a streaming television series based on Lee Child’s novel The Killing Floor. Not only is Reacher up my alley in terms of content but I also read the novel on which it was based.
The first few episodes didn’t impress me, but I was interested enough by what seemed like an unusually faithful adaption of the book, at least as far as memory served. Sure, they consolidated characters and changed things a bit but it was close enough to bring me back the next day and binge the rest of the episodes. That’s not something I usually do. I’m sure it didn’t hurt having Lee Child as an executive producer.
Jack Reacher was a major in the US Army and an MP (Military Police). He’s like a cross between Sherlock Holmes and Andre the Giant. He has both brains and brawn and doesn’t use either sparingly. He’s capable of both strong empathy and extreme violence but always strives, like his mother believed he would, to do the right thing even when it’s hard.
Reacher is a drifter, and like the old westerns, travels from town to town, situation to situation, getting in and out of trouble.
Jack Reacher is played here by Alan Ritchson (Smallville, Titans). I wasn’t sure about him as Reacher, but he grew on me. It didn’t help that initially, my wife thought he looked and sounded like a musclebound Patrick Warburton (Jeff Bingham in Rules of Engagement). As the series continued, that comparison disappeared (for both of us) and he began to embody Reacher. Ritchson’s acting can be a little wooden at times, but he certainly matches the description of the character in the novel. Is he better than Tom Cruise? Well, I guess that’s up to personal preference.
Malcolm Goodwin (iZombie) plays Oscar Finlay, a fish out of water Chief Detective transfer from Boston (my stomping grounds). He has great chemistry with the rest of the cast and I would love to see him make a cameo from time to time when the series continues. Since Reacher is a self-described hobo, it’s unlikely that many characters from this season would have a large role going forward.
Ditto to Willa Fitzgerald (Dare Me, Alpha House) as Roscoe Conklin (in the book she’s never named, just referred to as Officer Roscoe or Roscoe - this would suggest that Roscoe is her last name in the novel), a small-town cop who acts as Reacher’s love interest and confidant in this season. Fitzgerald’s performance grew on me as well. So much so, that I hate to see her and Goodwin go.
Maria Sten plays Frances Neagley, a former army investigator turned private investigator who works with or for Reacher. Neagley first appeared in the novel Without Fail. Her addition is most likely to add a recurring character to the mix early on to provide the glue to the series.
Reacher doesn’t shy away from the violence or the sexual situations inherent in this type of thriller. However, nothing is overdone and all instances are appropriate for the story.
All in all, this is a great series with no filler. All episodes hum. As far as streaming television is concerned, Reacher gets my highest recommendation.
Reacher is available for streaming on Prime Video.
I have no additions or subtractions to note. Unusual, I know. If it’s not broken…
Rating: Five out of five stars.