When I first heard a new show called The Catch was joining the Shondaland roster, I was intrigued. When I found out Mireille Enos and Peter Krause were at the helm, I got downright excited. Unfortunately, though, that initial rush of anticipation waned quickly.
The freefall started when I watched the trailer.
Let me say right off the bat that Enos looks stunning. Stunning! Given some of my favorite roles from her are considerably low-key stylewise (think World War Z), it’s fun to see her in the capacity of the proverbial knockout.
Visually, The Catch looks to be pretty impressive, too — if not a bit gimmicky. And because I was an unabashedly devoted fan of both Six Feet Under and Parenthood, I’ll watch essentially anything with Peter Krause in it. So what’s the problem, right?
So, ICYMI, here’s a brief rundown of the plot. Enos plays Alice Vaughan, LA’s top private investigator. She comes across as totally in command of herself, if not also everyone around her. Basically, you don’t want to get on her bad side.
She is engaged to a seemingly unassuming man named Christopher, and the two seem happy by any standard.
Until, that is, he clears out her condo and her entire life savings. At that point, she puts two and two together — Christopher is Mr. X, the elusive con man her team has been trailing for years. And so begins the elaborate cat-and-mouse chase the show will revolve around.
Again, sounds decent enough, wouldn’t you say? Yet, here we are. To describe my lackluster feelings about the show, I’m going to have to break out a Sex and the City reference, as I am wont to do. I make no apologies.
During a memorable stretch of the iconic HBO series, Carrie and her friends head to the Hamptons for a summer vacation. When Carrie pops back into the city for a book launch party, she meets a handsome doctor who happens to have a house in the Hamptons. Hello, meet cute!
They decide to rendezvous beneath her beach umbrella the following day. He shows up: handsome, polite, smart, funny, obviously rich. When Carrie says she isn’t sure she’s interested, Miranda points out he’s “good on paper.” To which Samantha replies, “You know the rule — good on paper, bad in bed.”
Did you follow that? ‘Cause that conversation sums up how I feel about The Catch. It has all the right elements to be great; it does. But something is just… missing.
Maybe it’s because this plot has been done before. Maybe it’s because I always wonder about shows that have such singular targets. Once Christopher (also known as Ben in his bad guy form) gets caught, the thrill is gone.
That leads me to my next big issue with the show. If you’ll recall, I’m a big fan of both Enos and Krause — both of whom have starred in shows I was hopelessly hooked on before they ended, far too soon, in my opinion.
For Krause, first, it was Six Feet Under, which lasted only four years. This may seem like a decent arc for some shows, but Six Feet Under was original and brilliant and merited a few more seasons. Then it was Dirty Sexy Money, a guilty pleasure I was bummed to see get canceled after only two seasons. Lastly, it was the wound that is still fresh for me: Parenthood, which ended last year following a five-year run (Movie! Movie! Movie!).
As for Enos, she made The Killing a show I couldn’t stop watching. The fact that it only got three seasons is a crying shame, seriously.
My concern then is that if these shows that were so compelling and promising ended far too soon, will The Catch wind up being another — and possibly even shorter-lived — show that inevitably bums me out because it gets dropped? And, worse, rips two of my favorite actors from my TV lineup in one fell swoop?
That, my friends, is what I’m afraid of.