Hey TV.com, Should I Watch Killer Women?

By Kaitlin Thomas

Jan 07, 2014

Welcome to January, TV.com readers. It's officially the midseason, which means a deluge of new TV shows will soon be hitting your TV screens. Some will be worth a look, and some won't, but the bigger question is this: How do you find the time to figure out which is which? I'm glad you asked, because I'm here to help! Next up in our trusty Hey TV.com, Should I Watch [X] Show? series is ABC's Killer Women. The network has been home to over-the-top dramas for awhile now, so the series should fit right in between the likes of RevengeScandal, and Grey's Anatomy. But should you watch it? Read on to find out.

Killer Women... is this a show about a gang of female serial killers?

Oh, how I wish that's what the show was about; I'd watch the hell out of a show about a gang of female serial killers! Especially if it was a reality series. But unfortunately, Killer Women is a by-the-numbers procedural disguised as a pretty lady who's about to rob you of an hour of your time. It follows a lone female Texas Ranger on an elite squad that's committed to justice as she takes down (literal) lady killers. She's painted as a badass who gets shit done while her male colleagues look down on her for being a woman. Welcome to Texas! (J/K I love you, Texas. Texas forever.)

All right, so who created Killer Women, and who's in it?

The promos really want to drive home the fact that Killer Women is from executive producer Sofia Vergara, as if she's some sort of goddess of TV creation. ABC probably would've been better off if it'd played up the return to television of Battlestar Galactica's Tricia Helfer as Molly Parker, the ballsy Texas Ranger at the center of the series. The role reunites Helfer with former BSG co-star Michael Trucco, who plays Molly's brother Billy. The rest of the cast includes Alex Fernandez as a father-figure Ranger who knew Molly's dad, Marta Milans as Billy's wife Becca, Jeffrey Nordling as Molly's jerk ex-husband, and Marc Blucas (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) as a DEA agent and Molly's current beau. Also, The League's Nadine Velazquez makes for a nice guest-star in the pilot, and Brad Leland (Friday Night Lights' Buddy Garrity) appears briefly because he's contractually obligated to appear in every series about Texas.

When do the women start killing?

Killer Women premieres Tuesday, January 7 at 10pm. That puts it up against Person of Interest on CBS and Chicago Fire on NBC, as well as the Season 5 premieres of Justified and Cougar Town on FX and TBS, respectively.

Who might enjoy Killer Women?

Fans of Sofia Vergara, probably. See also: people who don't want to think too hard about TV, people who don't require heavily serializes plots, people who don't mind too much when a series is only half as good as it could be.

What's killer about Killer Women?

If I'm being honest, I really liked Marc Blucas as DEA agent Dan Winston. His character's relationship with Parker isn't remotely new or even that exciting—they bed each other and use each other for information while dancing around their feelings—but dammit if Blucas and his facial hair didn't win me over somehow. I guess time heals all wounds, Riley Finn. For Battlestar Galactica fans, it's fun to see Helfer back on TV playing another badass (or at least someone who's described as being one, even if she doesn't actually come off that way), especially with Trucco popping in every now and then as her brother.

What should maybe be killed about Killer Women?

Unfortunately, a lot. The pilot is so matter-of-fact that it casts Killer Women as just another boring procedural with flat caricatures and poorly done southern accents. There isn't enough meat to the first case—about a woman who kills an assistant district attorney on her wedding day—to make viewers feel invested in the outcome. All the core characters seem like one-note archetypes, and series opener didn't provide much of reason to care about them. 

There's a lot of talk about Molly being a fierce Ranger, someone who's not to be trifled with, but for most of the first hour, that's all it is: talk. Even when the series attempts to actually show us that Molly's a badass—like when it puts a gun in her hands as she makes a rescue attempt—it falls flat. It's not that Helfer can't handle the material; after all, this is the woman who breathed life into several different versions of Number Six on Battlestar Galactica. No, the problem is that the material isn't there in the first place, as the writing leaves plenty to be desired. For fans hoping to see Helfer in a new and exciting role, Killer Women is probably going to be a letdown. 

However: Despite everything you just read, this isn't necessarily a bad show. If the writing improves in future episodes, the series could evolve into a fun Tuesday-night ride, with plenty of action and sexiness. But for now, it feels a bit like a campy series from the 1990s instead of the badass-in-2014 that it wants to be.

So gimme a verdict—should I watch it?

As hard as it is for me to say this, because I really want to see Helfer succeed, you'd be better off skipping this one. If you want a series featuring a badass protagonist who looks good in boots and a hat, watch Justified. If want a series with a strong female character who looks good with a gun in her hands, you'd be better off waiting 'til summer, when you can spend some time with Helfer's real-life BFF and former BSG castmate Katee Sackhoff in A&E's Western series Longmire.

I think I might like to see a trailer before I make my final decision.

You got it, dude.


Killer Women premieres Tuesday, January 7 at 10pm on ABC.

  • Comments (77)
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  • geoffmaze Mar 14, 2014

    Hot garbage, it made it a whopping 6 episodes, which was 5.5 more than it should have. Couldn't have been any worse than the Following though..

  • marcusj1973 Jan 25, 2014

    So, here I am with little to do on a COLD afternoon when I come across this show again. "Sure, why not? Not like you have anything else better to do" I say and settle in for episodes 2 and 3.

    I think they got the marketing all wrong for this show. Instead of heavily promoting Sophia Vargara trying to channel her inner Tarantino/Rodgriguez (and failing) why not promote what this show actually is...a Texas based cop show about women, both good and bad, with an Hispanic touch.

    So far, we've had a woman blackmailed into killing to save her family, a woman assassin who preyed on abusive husbands and a woman veteran trying to right government wrongs and helping with military benefits.

    Attempted style aside, it's not a bad show and the focus on law enforcement as well as criminal activity from a female perspective where both hero and protagonists are women is original enough a concept for me to get behind. It's a Texas version of (the cancelled way too soon) 'Prime Suspect' of a woman earning respect in the all boys club.

    It will eventually need a little more substance over style and some actual character and story depth over the cliches, but IMO, the intent of what is being attempted is enough for me to give this series a shot.

  • marcusj1973 Jan 25, 2014

    And upon discovering it's been cancelled two episodes in...I guess none of that matters. Though this confirms the failed marketing because while certainly not great, it wasn't 2 episodes bad. Viewers didn't give the show a shot.

    I dunno if it would have done better than the 0.9 and 0.7 it did If promoted for what it actually was, but at least it would have gone out on it's own merrits.

  • jordan8916 Jan 22, 2014

    I, too really love this show. The actors and story lines are great. It's a nice twist from the intense, man driven cop shows. The episodes are light and easy to watch and bringing in a little bit of romance always adds that extra spark. I always loved Walker Texas Ranger, which was so popular for so long, and now having an independent, sexy/smart and beautiful woman as Texas Ranger brings us into the 21st century. Sofia Vergara is a genius. I hope this show does well!

  • hollyleery Jan 17, 2014

    I really love this show. True, I've always been a fan of Marc Blucas but even though there isn't a lot to think about and it's kind of fluff, sometimes you just need that. It's sad there's only eight episodes, I don't think you can formulate anything in that amount of time.

  • saintmark Jan 16, 2014

    Having seen 2 episodes so far I must admit that I kinda enjoy the show, even if some of it is cliche.

  • marcusj1973 Jan 09, 2014

    Because I'm an idiot and slightly curious, I watched the pilot...UGH!!!

    The writing was awful, the acting no better and the overall feel...UGH! It's like a laymen with no actual knowledge on how to create a film had a Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez marathon and told Sofia Vergara all about the cool movie they saw. She then turned around and tried to describe what she had been told to the director of this show and said, "We should do that"

    No style. No finesse. No slick camera angles. None of the things that make those gritty films so cool. Just cheezy post production work to try and re-create the same effect. No soul.

    Perhaps in this Tarantino/Rodriguez for dummies book which is the template for this series, somebody missed the chapter about tongue in cheek. That 'Dusk Till Dawn', 'Grindhouse', and the Mexico Trilogy aren't supposed to entirely be taken seriously.

    'Killer Women' is a hot mess.

  • babelak Jan 09, 2014

    So, the pilot was pretty clumsy. Some terrible dialogue and a pretty flimsy plot. Writing needs to be tighter, maybe throw in a few curve balls. The original Argentinian show (Mujeres Asesinas) upon which this was based sounds much more interesting, tbh, I'd rather watch that with subtitles than another standard procedural like this. Has anyone seen that, and if so, was it any good? Right on the money about Justified and Longmire being much, much better options for those who might be jonesing for a cowboy hat. Will give it at least one more chance to grab me, I think.

  • TrevPlatt Jan 08, 2014

    Wow, that was terrible.
    "Everybody knows the Rangers are the best interrogators in the world."
    Just off the top of my head... SAS, MOSAD, CIA, Scotland Yard, FBI, NCIS, my Grandmother, MI5 & MI6, the Russian and Chinese secret police, US Military Police, Homeland Security, The Secret Service and Kate Beckett.
    And what's with that red screen? Are they trying to make it look like a cheap Tarantino/Rodriguez knock off? The dialogue was poor, the shoot-outs were ridiculous and it was suffering from a deadly case of pilot-itis. And why is it that every man in a position of power has to be a complete dick except for the one she is dating? Not all guy's are arseholes Ms. Vergara! This is worst thing about the 4 Episode Test, I know there are three more of these to suffer through 9there's still that 1 % chance it comes good).

  • Grumpyclown Jan 09, 2014

    Did you notice how bad Tricia Helfer was in the shootout scene - she had her eyes closed most of the time!
    Her delivery of some of the awful dialogue was a saving grace, but not enough to keep me watching.
    But this does show that she can act, its just a pity the material is so poor

  • TrevPlatt Jan 09, 2014

    I was referring to the fact that they were all shooting four feet away from each other and couldn't hit shit, except when DEA Riley Finn (or whatever he's called in this one) managed to shoot the leg of an unlabelled container whilst reversing a car and yet the driver of the car chasing them was no more than two car lengths away and was probably the easiest target - and wasn't it convenient that the container even held a highly flammable substance? They'd have been fucked if it was full of water... or empty! But yeah, she needs to learn to shoot a gun if she's going to be a Texas Ranger, although you'd have thought she'd have done that four months ago!

    The writing was terrible and the dialogue was straight out of "Michael Bay's Action Film Making for Dummies". I still hate that opening scene though were the gorgeous woman in a bright red dress carrying a gun walks down the middle isle of a church during a wedding right up to the bride shoots her twice, 'runs' out of there and down a dozen stone steps in high heel shoes and she's in the car driving away before any of the many "Law Enforcement Professionals" attending the wedding have even realised that the bride's dress isn't white any more.

    It was very bad is what I'm saying, not quite Betrayal bad, but not far off.

  • gem-in-eye Jan 08, 2014

    Caprica, how can I not give it at least the four episode test. Is Longmire any good?

  • TrevPlatt Jan 08, 2014

    Longmire is great, I highly recommend it.

  • mcsuarez1974 Jan 08, 2014

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