Breaking In: Welcome to the Contra Club... Again

Breaking In S02E01: "The Contra Club"

I'd never actually heard of Breaking In before its miraculous resurrection by Fox, the same network that killed it last spring at the end of a bite-size, seven-episode first season—but apparently, it’s a show about geeks, and as a geek who has a geek-shaped hole in my heart where the recently ended Chuck used to live, I’m in the market for some new TV fanboy awesomeness.

Breaking In may very well be able to fill that hole.

My curiosity about the elusive first season (and elusive it is, unavailable on Hulu and the magical Netflix Instant Stream—way to make it difficult, Fox) was quelled by tonight's Season 2 premiere, which felt very much like a pilot. The addition of Megan Mullally to the principal cast and the removal of Trevor Moore and Michael Rosenbaum, implies a distinct intention to change something about the series... but what? Without even a “Previously on Breaking In” to bring newbies up to speed, I can’t help but wonder if this second season is intended to be a continuation of an already established story, or a second chance to tell an old story with a shiny new cast.

Despite missing out on Season 1, I found it very easy to get comfortable at the whimsical Contra Security offices. Boss-man Oz (Christian Slater) has a Captain Kirk chair, and Slater’s tongue-in-cheek introduction—a gentle dig at the network that previously ditched the show—roped me in. I’m a sucker for flirting with the fourth wall, okay?

When the underlings at Contra Security, a ragtag group of hackers, thieves, and techies, learned that Oz had agreed to sell the company to conglomerate Optimal Consumer Products (OCP), they attempted to save the day by derailing the deal. Unfortunately, Oz had blown most of Contra’s cash, and unless the company was sold, everyone would be facing a pink slip. The gang pulled together to convince Vice President of Acquisitions at OCP, Veronica Mann (Megan Mullally) to reconsider the sale... by utilizing their skills to crash a board meeting at OCP. Miracle of miracles (something this series excels in, as far as I can tell), it worked and everyone was soon back to pranking temps and awkwardly (not) hitting on co-workers.

There is awesome stuff here, definitely, but there is also ample room for more awesome stuff. Office hijinks are cute and all, but they are the cornerstone of every series that takes place in an office ever. Set yourself apart, Breaking In! You have the geekery and the secret-agent-lite aspect at your disposal and quite frankly, the highlight of this reboot-tastic season premiere was the Contra Club’s infiltration of OCP headquarters. It was fun. It was exciting. The fingerprint-snatching goop was cool. I’d rather see the hackers hack and the thieves thieve than watch Creepy Carol’s endlessly awkward attempts at hanging out with the cool kids. If you want to fill the Chuck void, Breaking In (and you probably won’t, but I’ll at least let you try), I need you to give me more than The Office for geeks. I mean, The Office is pretty geeky on its own, wouldn’t you say?

My own minor nitpicks aside, there’s a lot to work with here. I see a future of Oz and Veronica snarking at one another before inevitably entering the reluctantly attracted-to-one-another stage of their delightfully antagonistic relationship. Veronica’s undercover stint as a hapless office temp to study Contra Security from the inside out was funny. Borderline annoying—I was a little bit relieved when she was revealed to be a psychotic executive—but funny. Snort-inducing one-liners were plentiful (“In my defense, I didn’t know you were important”), and there were just enough nods toward geekery to give the Contra Club some street cred without overdoing it.

And please, please don’t overdo it, Breaking In. No one likes the person who tries too hard. Just look at Creepy Carol.


What’s your take on Breaking In’s resurrection? Are we in reboot territory or hitting the well-beaten path?

Comments (54)
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It was a weak ep compared to most of the first season - Dutch was one of the most charismatic characters and his absence is noted... I even miss the disguise guy.... The Cameron character tries too hard to be 'Chuck' but he's a lot less funny - Oz can be pretty awesome so there is hope there...
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Ugh, this was a weak episode for me... enough so that it took me a few days to even bother commenting on this article, hehe. Megan Mullally, in many ways, is great and funny... but I am so often annoyed by her in the shows I've seen her in.



I was really reminded of Human Target watching this episode. It's as if FOX has kind of a go-to move for shows they almost cancel but bring back for a second season:

1) Add a new female boss;

2) Add a new female and British secondary character; and

3) Change the opening theme song in some way.



I didn't like those changes with Human Target, and I don't like em with Breaking In. It changes the tone and flow of the show too much.
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That is a great point. Human Target was one of the best shows fox has come up with in a while. And the aspects they introduced in the last season brought the quality down a lot. Shame on Fox. That and The Good Guys should have gone anywhere
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Amen! Hated those changes to Human Target! The need to take tips from sister station FX on how to get out of the way of a great show.
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An article announcing this show coming back stated Michael Rosenbaum would be returning but that he was working elsewhere for the first new shows. He was great!! :)
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When did oz loose his gonads? He was like a evil mastermind fighting for good in season 1, this first episode makes him seem incompetent in comparison. I miss Trevor Moore too his role was small but hilarious. Like the scene with the nerf battle and buddy is camouflaged like the wall, and when he ate all the lasagna classic little bits but they worked. I just finished watching season 1 out of boredom never gave the show a chance when i saw the pilot when it first aired but i soon found myself steamrolling through 7 seven episodes and nearly died form excitement when i noticed season 2. ......... I instead died form disappointment as I watched a solid funny show descend into madness after being molested by fox.
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Yeah if you'd have seen the first season you'd know there's no sense of holding back on this show. I'm hoping they real it back in and allow some humanity into the show, because that's what got it killed the first time. Everything was so over the top it came off like they were trying to hard every ep.
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kinda sad that Odette Anabel is only a special guest star. She isn't a permanent member of season 2 yet.....
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I'd guess the billing of guest star was a move on the agents part. She is a regular of the series.
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So saddened to hear about Michael Rosenbaum not being in the show. Dutch noooooooooooo!
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HOW DOES NOBODY KNOW WHO TREVOR MOORE IS?! AND HE'S GONE AND IS NEVER COMING BACK *crying on floor*
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I remeber in the season 1 series/season finale that cameron was starting to see an old friend from school. I also remeber the "jealous" look melanie was giving them. I was wondering if that wil be explain or pursued in this season? Hopefully it'll last this time it's a great show.
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Oz is still awesome, but i think it is too bad that George (the master of disguises), and Doug (the douch), have been pulled aside. The only good reason i can find for this, is that they went to a new series while the show was cancelled. But that said i think it well go a new direction, but still be Breaking In with Break'in's going wrong. But now there will be this bitch, bitching up, but as Oz would have said "I'll allow it".
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I think this new season is about bringing in new viewers so you can't really say much about how different season 2 already looks from season 1 as season 1 seems a long time ago now and the first five minutes revealed that.

as to the news Odette may only be in five episodes, you just know the character of Cameron will fall for the good looking British assistant when Melanie isn't in the office...and then hilarious hijinks ensue when Mel returns.
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I LOVED the season finale in a way I have fallen for very few shows. And that's even with my hatred of Slater's face. I'm definitely going to check into the new season. Can't believe I haven't done that yet.
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I totally agree with you randomjester187
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The first season was good and funny. The season 2 premiere was like annoyingly cheesy. I don't like the new women roles.

Is this like trying to turn into the new 'Office'...? I don't want lame stupid office high jinks. I want season 1 material.



ALSO, I HATE that the intro has been CUT short and that great season 1 beginning song doesn't play out anymore.
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I didn't catch the new episode... but last scene had a lot of cut-a-ways to the various office pranks Cash would pull on Cameron. Putting his car upside down, pasting his desk and its contents to the ceiling, etc. Cameron got even in a simple yet devious way.



Likewise, one time Cameron got mad and stuck Josh's tie into the paper shredder.

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100% agree with you there. I really enjoyed the first season and was hopefull when i saw the opening line. I like Megan Mullaly, i loved her in Party Down, she was great in Parks and Rec and her probably most likeable quality is that she is married to Nick Offerman, but recently she is all over the place, Happy Endings, Breaking In, Up All Night. In Addition her role in Breaking In is borderline annoying and i dont like being annoyed by someone i actually like.

Minor complaint, having seen the whole first season, i expected some Oz badassery at the end. Like, Contra was Never in dept, but he wanted to get closer to OCP or something like that. First season Oz would have never told the truth. Thats why he was hilarious.
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I enjoyed the first season and was quite excited about the season 2 premiere, but halfway through the show, I find myself wondering if it's the same show as it was. The new character just doesn't work for me, not to mention her voice is just annoying...Stop trying to fix something that's not broken, leave the show as it was back in season 1, it was fine back then and will continue to be fine if you just let it be fox..
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Just plain fun. Christian Slater is perfect in the role (no surprise there). I enjoyed it last season, and I anticipate liking it this season. Any scripted show without vampires will get a chance from me.
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The first season every episode was them breaking in to places, this first episode of the second season was very different then what i expected, I dont know why they spent so much tine in the office this time, seems like if they wanted this show to survive they should have started with a bang instead of this, hopefully the rest is better
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Watch "Take the Movie and Run," easily the best episode of season 1, and it will become very clear what you're missing, and how different season 2 is thusfar.
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After reading the comments, I had to google Trevor Moore because I had no idea who he was. *facepalm* I guess I don't miss him LOL.



Still fun! I'm a fan of season one and I thought the premier episode was funny. Yay, I'm happy Megan Mullally joined the show! If I'm trying to like "New Girl" (and failing to do so until now) I can certainly watch this one too.
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I didn't remember who Trevor was either but Rosenbaum was from Smallville. I always like Meg since Will and Grace show. I'm just glad BI is back! LOL
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I wonder if not turning back to the show was his choice or not!
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I agree, this seemed a lot like a pilot rather than the start of a second season. It might be because of the rebranding it with new actors and the dismissing of others. I am going to miss Trevor Moore, not so much the character he played because that was well weird. But he was/ is? so good on The Whitest Kids U know. I was surprised to not see him. But the show can live without him. However, They need Rosenbaum, not necessarily in every episode, because the man and the character is a scene stealer. But bringing him back every one and a while would be a good thing.



As for the episode. I agree it wasn't their best. But since it was an introduction of Mullaly and her assistant and reintroducing the rest of the cast. I can forgive it for that. I will appreciate the hijinks as they occur over the rest of the season.



I think they have he ingredients so to speak for a great show. The contrast of comedy styles between Slater and Mullaly will be interesting to see how it plays out. However I agree with some below that they need to reign her in a little. She can be grating. And the rest will be great as well.
More+
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Great!.. I really like that show!!
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I liked it. I don't really miss Michael Rosenbaum's character. I found him to be a little over-the-top and annoying so many times. However, I would want Odette Annabelle to be a series regular. Her character is very funny to me. I also liked Mulally with her one-liners; some had me in tears! I loved the slow-motion walk in the beginning, and when she kind of shoved her way to the front, I was ROTFL! Creepy Carol was quite hilarious, too!
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I believe Oddette was the prison nurse from House recently. She is cute but not sleazy cute like so many other TV hos who miraculously get repeat roles but not from their talent. lol She is refreshing!
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Did you see that Odette Annable was listed as a Special Guest Star instead of a regular cast member? I'm already not happy with the changes... If she's not going to stay on the show, it's going to have to get a lot better and fast for me to stick around.
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She's reportedly only set to appear in 5 episodes this season (out of 13). Because of her commitment to HOUSE she made while the show was "cancelled."



It sucks. I think she's great, but the show is changing a bunch which is not what it needed.
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But God willing, if Breaking In survives to see season 3, there will be no more House. Then again, this is Fox we're talking about.
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I loved the first season, and I am okay with the leaving of Trevor Moore, though I didn't mind Michael Rosenbaum and wouldn't mind seeing him as an occasional guest star, but Mulally made up for them. She is a funny woman.



As people have mentioned below, this show does do a lot of away from the office stuff, or at least they did last season. The car stealing bit and the high school kid bit were particular favourites of mine. I love the way this show works, and if they can keep it up, I will be happy.
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MaryAnn! As a big Breaking In fan (and Chuck fan) I'm glad you liked this episode. I would highly recommend the first season though which is less office dialogue and more focus on missions and relationships on those missions. This season is a new direction sort of, so it'll take time to get used to.
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I thought Id try this show again after dropping it when it failed the 4 episode test but I couldn't make it past the first 5 min. its just that bad.
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Mullally to me, is a one-trick pony. If she is going to be an asset, she'll need to up her game. Cute and sassy is twinkies. Great in small doses, but try living on them. In season one this team walked a line of comedic timing with just enough real-world edge to work.

Keep the English muffin, and put the twinkie in the back of the fridge!!
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Twinkies don't require refrigeration. They can survive a nuclear holocaust.



Pretty sure the same can be said about Megan Mullally
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LOL, ok, put the twinkie in the back of the closet in the shoebox next to my Amazing Fantasy #15.
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Mullally is just hilarious. What a great addition to the cast. Also, the opening scene was hilarious and very much reminded me of Futurama's return. I'm just really glad this show wasn't cancelled.
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The last season wasn't just confined to the office, they actually had clients who hired them to test their security, so I'm assuming that this was a kind-of reboot. Ditching Rosenbaum was a must. I like the guy, he's a decent actor, but his character in the first season was far too over the top - he ruined the chemistry. I didn't mind Trevor Moore as Josh Armstrong - "a disguise expert" - but I think the show works just as well with or without him.



Mullally is a great addition to the cast, providing a character to be a foil for Slaters 'Oz' - something which was lacking in season 1.



I'm glad Breaking In is back, the opening scene, reminiscent of that Family Guy episode from so many years ago now, was played perfectly. I actually think they did a better job of it than Family Guy, the subtlety was an improvement and made the whole scene funnier. I really hope the show becomes a hit this time around so that Fox finds it easy to renew.



And lets be honest, the more Odette Annable is on our screeen the better.

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Giant desk accessories is the best prank ever. Also, funniest part of the episode, which is unfortunate since it was essentially a Family Guy cut-away.
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I loved season 1 and was upset when it was not picked up. Then I was elated when it was picked up. But when I heard news that Dutch and Josh (Trevor Moore) were not going to be in season 2 I knew it was over. Those two were hilarious and Dutch stole every scene he was in.

I thought this first episode was not funny at all, I don't remember even laughing, and Megan Mullally is just not funny but very annoying. R.I.P. Breaking In, my money is on it not even playing out the full season.
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Totally agree - Megan Mullaly is not funny - the whole bed squeak joke made me cringe - also, I didn't even realize the disguise guy wasn't back until I read it in this comment thread - hopefully it gets better than the first episdoe...
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Didn't like this Episode at all. Megan Mullamey was annoying as always and the case was pretty weak. Another letdown is that will only appear in 5 Episodes...
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Needed more ROSENBAUM!
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I haven't seen the episode yet, but I'm seriously disappointed that his character is gone. He played such a great douche, and very few people can do that and make you like them. Also, I liked Trevor Moore's master-of-disguise character. Shame they're both gone.



At least Megan Mullally is in it now. I'm a fan of hers.
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i miss Michael Rosenbaum bring him back why does this happen in every show he is in its like Smallville with Lex Luthor all over again.
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This episode was alright, but my main reason for originally watching the show was because Michael Rosenbaum was in it, so I'm not sure how it's going to fare without him in my opinion.
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I know I'm in the minority but I hate Megan mullamey. She plays the SAME character with the same voice and same quirkyness in everything, and to be honest it annoys the shit out of me. LIked the first season, will miss Rosenbaum but Odette Will keep me tuning in.
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Wow.... that was absolutely TERRIBLE. I did watch the first season, and I liked it. Watching this episode makes me question if I liked it, or if they totally changed it to be this steaming pile of garbage. Out of all the shows to bring back..... really Fox? FIREFLY!!! Needless to say, deleted my series record. Can't say enough about how just TERRIBLE this episode was.
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Interesting, because you didn't actually say anything about what made it so terrible.
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Trevor was quite good in the first season, although a bit sidelined
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Wow, I watched the first season and totally forgot about Trevor Moore being in the show.. I guess that says something huh? But I am sad to see Michael not returning, enjoyed his character. I did enjoy the episode though and I was thinking to myself how it works as a

"pilot" for new viewers.
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