Prompted by several men of my acquaintance, I succumbed to the hype and watched the Reacher show on Amazon’s “Prime” channel yesterday — yeah, unto the entire first season so nobody could accuse me of missing the good part or the ending, or whatever.
Apart from an insanely-ridiculous plot with more holes than a mesh facemark, the entire premise of the show (stolen wholesale from the Then Came Bronson TV series of 1969-70, only with ultra- violence added) is at about comic-book level, i.e. aimed at the nine-year-old boy mentality.
Loner comes to town, finds rampant injustice, fights against it (literally), kills everyone, wins in the end. Clint Eastwood’s Pale Rider did it better and more convincingly, in two hours.
I am getting so sick of people fighting in movies, landing what would be crippling blows in real life, only to jump back into the fray and land equally-devastating blows on the opponent.
Pro tip: when someone is head-butted in the face, the result is a broken nose, broken jaw, broken cheekbone (or all the above), and temporary befuddlement if not outright unconsciousness. In almost every fight scene in this foul waste of time, the fighters would land not one, but several head-butts on each other, with seemingly no ill effects on either. Even worse, after the fight was over, nobody showed any ill-effects — no bruising, no fractures, nada.
In one risible fight, Our Hero Reacher gets hit not once but seven times in the ribs with a crowbar. I hate to spoil the secret, but one blow in the ribs with a crowbar is Game Over — broken ribs, punctured lungs, organ damage — and trying to block the blow with a forearm ends with a broken arm. And worse, when we see him later (in a predictable sex scene which made me howl with laughter, so awkwardly was it staged), there were absolutely no signs of him having been in mortal combat but a few minutes earlier.
I also think the Desert Eagle was loaded with .22 LR bullets, so little did it recoil. Please.
Finally, the casting. Uh huh: a 6’5″ musclebound protagonist with a steely stare? Shrimpy dwarf Tom Cruise was more convincing in the movie version, because at least he could hide in a crowd if he had to. This man-mountain would stand out on Muscle Beach in L.A.
One-dimensional: the character, the plot, the bad guys, everything. Oh, and answer me this: mid-summer in a small town in Georgia, and nobody’s perspiring outdoors?
This show is quite possibly the worst thing I’ve ever seen on TV, and any future series is going to be roundly ignored, with prejudice.