Reacher – Season 1 (Amazon Prime)
Before we get too deep into it here, let me just start out by saying that I’m a fan of Lee Childs’ Reacher novels. I like to read them between sci-fi or fantasy stuff I tend to gravitate towards. They are no masterpieces in any way, but taken for what they are, I think they are good entertainment for the moment. Secondly, I’m one of those people that think that casting Tom Cruise as Reacher in the movie-adaptions was a very weird choice. He sure tried to bring the spirit, but something just felt wrong there.
So, I had some hopes, although realistic ones, going into this new show, where the production chose to cast Alan Ritchson as Reacher. I’ve not seen him in anything since Blue Mountain State, so it was a bit hard to let go of that role seeing him in this. But it doesn’t take too long to warm up to his depiction of the famous protagonist. Sure, he might look a bit too young, and has a tongue-in-cheek smirk a lot of the time, but I think he does a good job. He has got the size and he’s a pretty convincing brawler when it comes to the fight scenes.
If you haven’t read the books, don’t go in expecting a new True Detective kind of show here. The story does take off quite quickly with Reacher being arrested for a murder the moment he sets his foot in the small town in the middle of nowhere. I’m not gonna go into the story almost at all, but it quickly turns personal. We get some flashbacks throughout the show, explaining the Reacher family dynamics and what has made Reacher into what he is.
There are some twists and turns throughout the show, some that can be seen from miles away, and some that are a bit more surprising. Some of the characters feels like a caricature of what they are supposed to portray, especially the bad guys. Reacher is Reacher throughout though, having no problems bashing some heads in whenever he feels the need be, but at least it’s in self-defense, most of the time. He’s practically invincible throughout, with the exception of some moment when he all of sudden gets his ass kicked by a character that he sure shouldn’t get beaten by.
The supporting cast does a totally okay job, and there is a lot of banter and more comedic moments sprinkled into all of the episodes and there is some chemistry between the main characters. Once I knew what the show was about, and what tone they were going for, I found myself enjoying it. It might be because I’ve read the books, and perhaps also because I’ve not read the particular book that this season is based upon, which made the story not that obvious for me. The showdown feels like something taken from Lethal Weapon or Die Hard, and is a pretty satisfactory, although a very much expected, ending.
Watch it if you’re a fan of the books, I think that you’ll like it, as they are catching the tone of the books in a decent way. If you haven’t read the books, there’s better crime/thriller shows out there for sure, but it could also serve as a nice introduction to the Reacher-world, if you take it for what it is. I had fun at least and I’m looking forward to a second season.