An Intelligence Community
CBS (ended 2014)

Hey you! This isn't a review, it's a PREview. Huge difference. Most notably, the "P." Also, these PREviews are based on early cuts of pilots that might change drastically by the time they officially hit the air, so we can't properly review them. But we CAN give you an idea of what to expect. In this series of early looks at the new shows of fall 2013, there's no contemplating, no deep analysis; just super-duper quick thoughts on what we just watched that we're passing on to you. We'll revisit each previewed show in the fall with the hyper-intellectual breakdowns and fart jokes you're used to from us goons here at TV.com. 



Intelligence – Mondays at 10pm on CBS (Midseason)

STARRING AND CREATED BY: Sawyer is returning to TV! Josh Holloway (Lost) stars, with Marg Helgenberger (CSI), Meghan Ory (Once Upon a Time), Michael Rady (Emily Owens, M.D.), John Billingsley (True Blood), and James Martinez there for support. The series is based on an unpublished novel by John Dixon, and was adapted for television by Michael Seitzman (North Country, 2012's passed-over pilot Americana).


THE GIST: Gabriel (Holloway) is a Cyber Command agent (and possible Ralph Lauren male model) with a special tech upgrade implanted in his brain. A microchip allows him to tap into "the information grid," which means he can access data satellites, the internet, radio, and the other invisible information that flies through the air straight from his brain! It's like Google Glass, minus the fashion disaster. He's basically the government's most prized weapon, but his human instincts get in the way of him being 100-percent cooperative. To keep him in line and give him someone to flirt with, Gabriel's no-fun boss Lillian (Helgenberger) assigns him a pretty handler/babysitter (Ory). Lots of people who don't speak English get shot. 


SNAP JUDGMENT: This techno-mumbo-jumbo-babble-shooting-punching-one-lining thriller sits comfortably in CBS's rocking chair as an example of crowd-pleasing patriotic action-science-fiction. Hunky Holloway continues to be a threat to most guys' heterosexuality, and he's pretty perfect for the role of Gabriel, which is a mish-mash of Jason Bourne, the guy from Human Target, and a Bluetooth headset. The pilot's strength is in its legitimately great action sequences, as Holloway's stunt double jumps off walls and through cars, often using his power-up to wiggle out of difficult situations. It seems like Ory and Holloway might be able to develop some sort of chemistry as well, because that's what hot people do. I also got the sense that Intelligence might dip into serialized story territory, much like CBS's other gizmo thriller Person of Interest. It's worth a watch if you're into fun shooters from major networks. Your dad will LOVE this.


PILOTITIS DIAGNOSIS: Intelligence's pilot uses a pretty nifty trick to get some exposition out of the way. Gabriel will walk around a freeze-framed scene that he's reconstructed in his head and details will appear like pop-up windows. The rest of the backstory is unapologetically laid out by Helgenberger's Lillian, in matter-of-fact fashion just to get it over with, which was probably a smart decision. Just get it done and move on! In general, the pilot does a good job of getting straight to business.


FACES TO LOOK OUT FOR: Ory already has a following from her gig on Once Upon a Time, but this will be the first time America really gets to see her without the dyed hair and heavy makeup. Holloway can also take his stardom to the next level.


RANDOM THOUGHTS: The idea of Gabriel being able to tap into the information superhighway is neat, but it's also one of those things that the writers can turn on or off at will to convenient get him out of unfortunate situation—or keep him stuck in one. How many times will we see Gabriel get captured while the bad guys run jammers so he can't get a signal? The show doesn't have as smart of a premise as Person of Interest, where The Machine isn't under the control of its users.


EXCITEMENT LEVEL: Unless something changes, Intelligence won't be a GREAT show, but it should be entertaining enough to get by. On a scale of 1 to 10, how about a solid 7?



PILOT PREVIEW POWER RANKINGS:
(Where we rank the fall season's pilots based on very early impressions)


DRAMA
1. Almost Human - J.J. Abrams and J.H. Wyman's robotic buddy-cop drama

2. Intelligence - Josh Holloway stars as a Cyber Command agent who has Wi-Fi in his brain


COMEDY
1. Trophy Wife - Malin Akerman marries into a big family and ends up with two ex-wives and three stepchildren in the process 

2. About a Boy - Jason Katims' TV adaptation of the film adaption of Nick Hornby's novel about a man-boy friendship


Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 3/31/2014

Season 1 : Episode 13

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Is that Michael Jackson on the picture with Holloway? I'm sorry, I just can't get over this impression.
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If Josh is starring ... im on ! I Like the trailers and the premise of his brain being upgraded.
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i also think it's a new 'chuck' but really it's 'jake 4.0' which was before chuck about a guy who accidently is infected with nanites.. lead played by covert affairs 'augy' i forget his name.
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Jake 2.0 was a great show. It was much more down-to-earth and serious than Chuck ever was, Chuck tried too hard full of boring clichés.

As for this one, unfortunately it's too popularistic to be a great show as Tim said, but it could be entertaining, for a while.
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I agree with the other posters who say it seems alot like Chuck. An attractive handler,,,hmm wonder where that will lead...Nothing truly original...though that doesnt surprise me these days...
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Sounds great! But when you say at the top of the article "Mondays at 10pm on CBS (Midseason)", you actually mean that it premieres Feb 24, 2014, right?
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Reminds me a lot of Chuck, so i think i'm going to love it! =)
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So this is Chuck if Bryce hadn't destroyed the intersect mainframe.
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This sounds just like Jake 2.0.
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darn beat me to it ;)
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Sounds like Knight Rider on foot.
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This whole seeing information or whatever sounds to me just like the same wonky premise that revolution had. Writers with no idea about physics just coming up with stuff. If it's done right i won't care. But since i couldn't bear Revolution for more than a few episodes i can't imagine me watching this.
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Forget Continuum. Why am I having flashbacks to a 1972 NBC series called "Search" (besides being really old)? It had elite agents with communication and tracking implants, and TV cameras built into jewelry, all operating under the supervision of a NASA-like control center. They didn't have the internet or GPS back then, but if they had, it would have been thrown in too, without a doubt. I guess it's hard to come up with something really new.

Come to think of it, didn't one of Shakespeare's plays have something like this in it?
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I hope this turns out to be a very watchable series. it is getting very hard to find good shows some of them pass the time others if you don't get to see them you are not worried. at the end of the day I am looking forward to getting back into September and all the good shows like NCIS, NCIS:LA Hawaii 5-O and such.
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i loved Chuck so will give it a try
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i was really interested in this...and still kinda am, but i just started watching CONTINUUM and she has a lot of tech in her head too since she's from 2077. i'll still dvr it.
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I liked this better when it was called Jake 2.0.
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Thank you! Before there was Chuck, there was Jake 2.0... and it was good.
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Hello Charles Carmichael.
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I will definitely watch this show.

GO SAWYER!
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So it's Chuck. As a drama.
Pass.
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Should use a more unique name, there was a Canadian TV series called Intelligence that was an absolutely superb TV series, its name deserves to be retired and honoured!
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Based on what I heard this sounds better than Almost Human.
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I'm actually a little more excited for this over Almost Human based off of the trailers... but hey, I'm a sucker for cliffhangers, and the Intelligence one sets up the only small hint that its going to be slightly serialised. Bring on The Evil Female Asian with a special tech upgrade implanted in her brain!

I know Chuck's been mentioned, but what about Jake 2.0? Anyone remember that? It was around before Chuck, and Intelligence looks quite similar.
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I think it sounds interesting. I'll give this a go.
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I'm here for Sawyer. For better or for worse. Since I can't be married to him in real life, I will show my dedication by watching every. single. episode. No matter how bad it is.....but I'm pretty confident it will be awesome :)
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I definitely want to see how Josh does so I'm in. To me it's mind blowing he hasn't been in something big or good since LOST. Three years plus is way too long for him. And love Meghan Ory so may be a winner for me.
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when does this premier?
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Monday, February 24, 2014
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I like CONTINUUM so I guess I will trial it.
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Slow news week, eh. We already want to see this, but we can't till the snow falls. So, put it in a drawer and let us know when it is more impending. Hey, why all the hostility below? Hey, Chuck wasn't all that good, especially near the end...
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Sounds good enough to check without high expectations.
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Sounds like the only thing Intelligence (dumb name) has going for it is Holloway, and quite honestly Holloway without Sawyer's badittude isn't enough reason for me to tune in.
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So, pretty much Chuck without the comedy? Haha god damnit
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I didn't even make that connection...I loved Chuck, mostly because of Zachary Levi, and since this has Josh Holloway I'm sure it will live up to my expectations :)
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Exactly what I was thinking while reading that. "It sounds like 'Chuck' if it had been a drama.'"
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Continuum Lite:
The witty, pretty American version without all those messy themes that force the audience to think...
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With any luck we also dropped the horribly uninteresting lead, who is only slightly more watchable than a photograph.
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I too was bored by Continuum....but not because of the lead, I just thought the pacing was terrible and couldn't get into it.
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Let's just say we disagree about that, and leave it there.
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I will check out a few episodes, but if it's too much of a procedural, it won't be many. I need a story, but this is CBS, so I don't expect more than 5 minutes at the end of every other episode devoted to some kind of arc. CBS sucks that way. If it hadn't been for Person of Interest and The good wife, which have managed to be good shows in spite of the CBS constraints, I would have just dismissed all new CBS shows without watching.
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7's a fairly decent raiting. I would have probably assumed 6. is it as bad or better than hawaii five 0 where they can do anything entertaining enough except for every episode they have some shit extras give a sob story over piano music and it never accomplishes anything?

person of interest i generally think of as a fluke in the sea of other cbs shows.
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POI and The Good Wife--two best dramas on network TV. Hawaii 5-Oh, not so much and not nearly as good as Human Target which could dance with the first two without missing a step--I miss Indira Varma...
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6 at best*
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Really enjoying these Tim, but wish that you were getting them out faster. We know, we know - we shouldn't be complaining, but they're enjoyable and you've got 30 pilots to get through so time is of the essence!
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Not so much. If I'm hungry I don't go down and watch a guy cook a steak. If it ain't ready, I don't wanna hear about it--YET!
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I love that fat, hairy mess, John Billingsley (Dr. Phlox! *le swoon*). He was pretty much the best thing about "True Blood." I hope he plays another epic weirdo in this show.
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What do you think Homeland should have done differently to not be "xenophobic"? Do they need to make the muslim terrorists white Americans to be politically correct?
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There's plenty of terrorist groups that are white and not Muslim.
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I'm sure there is, but it would have been difficult or impossible to build a similar story around one of them. Even if it's possible, Al Qaeda is the simplest, most obvious choice, so why not use them?
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why" would it be difficult to build a similar story around one of them" or "Al Quaeda the simplest, most obvious choice"? Neither The Hezbollah or the PAlestinian Hamas are Quaeda affliated and not even of the same religion in the case of the first group. Anyway, my initial question was not really around Homeland per se, but whether it is meant that many non English speaking people ending up dead is a sign that the series will have xenophobic undertones according to Tim. There is a reason why Tim thought to mention this sentence in his review and it is legitimate that someone should ask clarifications.That being said, I am going to watch the series no matter what the response, if one will be provided.
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No but the way they depicted Beirut certainly was in episode 2 and the way they talk about Muslims in general is extremely offensive. I personally would have prefered to have it been treated more non-political and more investigative. I have seen very few episodes before disgust had its way, but I remember the way the heroes' daughter was treated when she brought this subject up in her school.I don't care of politically correct, but just that all this was uncalled for, and way too easy.I was glad that it bothered her, though.
My own view is that a terrorist is a terrorist and never reflects on his ethnical or religious background, no matter what he or she claims.The "Muslim" terrorists are Salafists and disowned by the massive majority of Muslims, the IRA did not reflect on all the Irish, the Red Brigades did not reflect on the Italians and RAF did not reflect on the German people. Their claims that they are doing it for the people is their own way of justifying their horrendous deeds, to accept that justification is falling in their trap. If this is what you want, be my guest.I will pass.


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I think they could have done their research better, and had episode 2x02 take place in an another city, one that's similar to the version of Beirut that they came up with. What they did looks more like ignorance to me than xenophobia, but I can see how it can be interpreted that way too. Would you have been OK with it if it had been a city/town that's actually like that?

By the way, that was a GREAT episode. To me, the inaccurate depiction of Beirut isn't any more annoying than say, people hiding behind cars when they're being shot at,

The discussion at school showed us some xenophobes, but not in a favorable light. It made them look like complete assholes. So I wouldn't agree that this scene is a reason to consider the show xenophobic. That would be like thinking that South Park is antisemitic because Cartman tried to exterminate the jews.

I don't doubt that a vast majority of muslims strongly disagree with the muslim terrorists. I also don't doubt that the Quran doesn't support what the terrorists are doing. But that doesn't change the fact that muslim terrorists believe that they have God on their side. This is a quote from episode 1x01 of Vice:

Shane Smith: "But in the Quran it says, not to do suicide or kill other muslims, but that's what's happening with suicide attacks. How does the Taliban feel about that?"

Syed Mohammad Akbar Agha, leader of the Taliban Jaish Al-muslimin group (translated): "The Taliban have great Muftis [Islamic scholars], that have allowed them."

Earlier in the episode, they interviewed some failed suicide bombers. The interviews were very short, but they made it clear that their motivations were religious. One of them said that they were taught *in school* (in Pakistan) to commit suicide in order to go to Paradise. The other talked about how infidels had insulted God and the prophet. This episode shows clearly that it's very wrong to say that a terrorist never reflects on his religious background.

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sounds like chuck
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I keep thinking of Gary on Alphas. He didn't need a chip. I suppose on a slow day TV.COM is gonna have a poll as to who is better or more favored among these similarities.
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It sounds a lot like Chuck. It needs Yvonne Strahovski.
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it sounds more like Continuum...not sure if it can live up to it.
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i'm sure it could *hides laughter*
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Meh, and only that much because of Josh Holloway and Meghan Ory.
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Hey, I will watch it because Josh Holloway is in it!
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