Hey TV.com, Should I Watch NBC's Crisis?

By Kaitlin Thomas

Mar 14, 2014

We're deep into the mid-season now, fellow TV fans. Pretty soon it's going to be summer and you'll be too busy playing volleyball on the beach or going swimming in your neighbor's pool to care about television at all. Hahaha. That was a joke. Everyone knows people who watch a lot of TV struggle to move from the couch to the bathroom, let alone do strenuous physical activity. Anyway, all season long we've been guiding you and helping you make decisions about which shows to watch. Up next is NBC's hostage drama Crisis, which continues the hot new trend of television shows with one-word titles. But is it worth it? Or will it also continue NBC's trend of rather lackluster TV? Let's find out in the latest version of Hey TV.com, Is This Show a Stinking Pile of Garbage or Not?

What's the crisis at the center of Crisis?

Not to be confused with CBS's HostagesCrisis is a drama series that follows the unfolding of a hostage situation involving the children of Washington, D.C.'s elite, including the daughter of a top CEO, the child of an international diplomat, and even the President's son. Taken hostage during a field trip with their teacher and a parent chaperone, the entire operation is the work of a brilliant evil mastermind who has thought of everything, down to video surveillance of the FBI agents working the case, and removing the trackers the parents had implanted under their children's skin. This dude/dudette means business.

Who created Crisis, and who stars in it?

Crisis was created by Rand Ravich (Life) and is executive produced by Ravich, Far Shariat (I Love You Phillip Morris), and Phillip Noyce (The Giver). It stars Gillian Anderson (HannibalThe X-Files) as Meg Fitch, the CEO of a global IT company, Dermot Mulroney (New Girl) as ex-CIA analyst Francis Gibson, Lance Gross (House of Payne) as Secret Service rookie Marcus Finley, Rachael Taylor (666 Park Avenue) as FBI agent Susie Dunn, James Lafferty (One Tree Hill) as high school teacher Mr. Nash, and Michael Beach as FBI Director Olsen. Rounding out the cast are Max Martini (Pacific Rim) as Koz, Halston Sage (Neighbors) as Amber Fitch, Stevie Lynne Jones (Runaways) as Beth Ann Gibson, Max Schneider (How to Rock) as Ian Martinez, and Joshua Erenberg (Suburgatory) as Anton Roth.

When does the Crisis begin?

Crisis premieres Sunday, March 16 at 10pm on NBC, which means you'll have to choose between CrisisThe Mentalist on CBS, Revenge on ABC, and Talking Dead on AMC. 

Who might enjoy Crisis?

Fans of Hostages, probably! But also fans of One Tree Hill who are happy to see James Lafferty back on their televisions. See also: fans of Dylan McDermott who tuned in thinking he was on this show and not Dermot Mulroney, but stuck around anyway because they still don't know the difference. I also wouldn't count out fans of silly shows with seemingly invincible villains.

What makes Crisis stand out?

Gillian Anderson, obviously, but that's a given. Crisis is by no means a great series, nor it is groundbreaking, but it is relatively successfully in pulling off a twist in the pilot that similar series could have botched. It's not surprising that the best moments are those involving the hostage situation, and not the scenes involving the FBI and the parents of the children taken hostage, but I'd also say that the series could benefit from going even more campy and dramatic. It's so over-the-top already that making the villain even more cartoonish could turn it into one of those, "Oh my God, this is so ridiculous I need to see WTF is going to happen next" kind of shows.

What maybe isn't so great about Crisis?

Crisis asks a lot of its audience. And I mean a lot. Not only is there an entire notebook that details every step of the master plan, but it's completely handwritten. Come on! No one writes anything by hand anymore! And also, if this has-thought-of-everything-brilliant-mastermind is as brilliant as the show makes them out to be, why do they have a notebook that could obviously be traced back to them or used against them?

The pilot also has a lot of story to get through in an hour, which results in some very important developments being glossed over or ignored all together. For instance, the episode jumps from the children being taken hostage to the FBI discussing how this could have happened, but the pilot never shows us how they were alerted to the missing children in the first place. Considering a lack of cell phone service plays a large role in one of the storylines in the pilot, it's confusing. 

So, should I watch it?

You probably thought I'd say no, but I'm going to say yes because of the possibility of crazy over-the-top drama. 

Gimme a trailer! Gimme a trailer!

Okay, here you go!



Crisis premieres Sunday, March 16 at 10pm on NBC.

  • Comments (48)
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  • lottadi Mar 26, 2014

    NO, this is really bad.

  • w8sdz Mar 15, 2014

    NBC really messed up on this one. I missed the Pilot - many others may have missed it. Now they are starting with Episode 2. That's doesn't give us a proper set-up to understand the premise of the series. They should have started this run with the Pilot, as they've done with others that aired pilots months in advance.

  • lottadi Mar 26, 2014

    You won't miss a thing, don't waste your time.

  • w8sdz Apr 05, 2014

    I didn't waste my time - I decided not to watch the series. I don't like the idea of depicting violence against government officials and/or their families. After reading a synopsis of the plot it was clear that this will be a continuous stream of kidnapping and killing of families, trying to force people to do things they would otherwise not want to do. This could become a playbook for extremists.

  • lottadi Apr 05, 2014

    Also the acting was way worse than usual and the entire mess is just annoying.

  • LOST-TWD-PP-GOT Mar 15, 2014

    I'll probably give it a try, just because of Gillian Anderson. But it's going to have to wait, most likely until summer. I already have all 21 hours of primetime filled. And i'm catching up on 24 & Supernatural, with my morning coffee and dinner. I considered watching it on the Saturday encore, but i watch The Sopranos, Revolution, and Hannibal. So summer it is.

  • sleepy-sonic Mar 15, 2014

    So this is a Hostages clone then?

  • Muderboy Mar 15, 2014

    First of all, why is your Veronica Mars story no longer on the home page, Kaitlin? As for Crisis, I'll give it a go...

  • thekaitling Mar 15, 2014


  • atuladitya25 Mar 15, 2014

    TV Litmus needed!

  • AndreaSinclai Mar 15, 2014

    my husband and I previewed the pilot episode and were blown away! he's obsessed, has been bugging me about when it comes on for the past month now.

  • Dec1964 Mar 15, 2014

    Yes i am definitly watching this show.

  • SamuelMartel Mar 15, 2014

    I sooooooo feel you...

    Took me about 15 minutes to programm my DVR for all the shows on Sunday. Thank god True detective is done because there wasn't any room left to record.

    I'll check it out. Almost wishing I won't like it... then I won't have to watch it. I can barely keep up with all the shows I watch between work, gym, working on the house... And summer is coming. Even less time. aaaaaargh.

  • alcalde Mar 15, 2014

    &See; also: fans of Dylan McDermott who tuned in thinking he was on this
    &show; and not Dermot Mulroney, but stuck around anyway because they
    &still; don't know the difference.

    You joke, but as I was reading the review I said to myself, "Oh, the guy from American Horror Story! Awesome!" and it wasn't until this sentence and a quick Google search in response that I realized I was mistaken. :-(

    Also, is this show the spiritual cousin of iconic 1991 movie Toy Soldiers?

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