The Beast

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A&E (ended 2009)

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The Beast Fan Reviews (11)

7.5
out of 10
Average
463 votes
  • A promising sounding show turns out to be a flop.

    5.5
    This review is based on an early impression (episodes 1 and a small part of 2) and so i realize there is the possibility of improvement down the road.

    Whereas the synopsis of the show sounded interesting, the execution of it is quite dire. A couple of FBI-agents, one experienced and shifty (Patrick Swayze) and a rookie (Travis Fimmel) are teamed up to work together on cases. The first two cases involved sales of weapons and drugs. There is no real point going into the plots of the episodes as they play out pretty much exactly as you would expect. There is a subplot involving internal affairs wanting the rookie, Dove to cooperate with them in keeping tabs on the experienced agent, called Barker. It is implied that Barker might be involved in some dirty business even outside of bending or even breaking the rules.

    This show comes across as being as mediocre as you could imagine. The camera-work is horrible. Aside from being a bad student of the "NYPD Blue" school of shaky-cam, the picture often looks blurry, and depressingly under-lit or dark altogether. It is as if the producers hired an amateur and told him "give it your best shot" with a digital camera.

    The show, from what i've seen, is horribly clichéd and the music score is utterly predictable in what mood it wants to set a scene in as well as when it swells up to give a scene or shot fake tension or emotional resonance. The acting ranges from mediocre (Swayze) to downright awful (Fimmel) with both of them channeling performances that have been done millions of times before by much better actors. Fimmel in particular is a twitchy, constipated-looking hybrid of Matthew McConaughey and Leonard DiCaprio, and seems selected to play the part for no other reason than to give the female audience a "hunk" to root for. The guy twitches and smirks his way through the show and we are supposed to think it is "acting".

    The characters they play are as hackneyed as they get, without almost an ounce of originality in behavior. The experienced guy knows all and makes the rookie do his bidding and the rookie apparently has no problem putting his career on the line by defying internal affairs in favor of loyalty to a guy he hardly knows, except that he in fact DOES break a large number of rules and laws. There is no reason whatsoever for him to potentially sacrifice his career for this man and yet he does. Why? Because the plot requires that internal affairs be "wrong" or mistrusted by default, and the rookie to show "loyalty" to his fellow agent as if it somehow more honorable than remaining honest as a law enforcement agent. Dove inexplicably thinks that not the bureau but his partner has given him his job and puts food on his table, otherwise there is no logical explanation why a rookie would put his job on the line for a near-total stranger. To make a long story short: the writing, much like almost everything else, stinks to high heaven and offers neither anything fresh and original, nor anything of quality even in redundancy.

    The only positive thing that could be said is that at least the action on display is adequate and if mediocrity is no hindrance in wasting some time i guess you could do even worse than this show. With "Flashpoint" for instance.
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