Magazine article Variety

Rush Hour

Magazine article Variety

Rush Hour

Article excerpt

Rush Hour

series: CBS, Thurs. March 31,10 pm

writers: Bill Lawrence. Blake McCormick

starring.- Justin Hires, Jon Foo. Wendie Malick

CBS has exhausted so many permutations of the buddy-cop format that the network has inevitably resorted to adapting and recycling. It does a bit of both with "Rush Hour," a light-hearted series version of the Chris Tucker-Jackie Chan movie trilogy, pairing Justin Hires and Jon Foo as the wisecracking LA. detective and taciturn Hong Kong cop, thrown together here on an open-ended basis.

Establishing the template naturally requires a bit of fancy footwork, and as an indication of the tone the network is seeking, the task has been entrusted to producers Bill Lawrence - usually associated with sitcoms, like "Scrubs" and "Cougar Town" - and Blake McCormick, In rapid-fire fashion, the pilot, directed by Jon Turteltaub, briskly sets up Hires' Det. Carter as a cop who breaks rules - to the point of irritating his captain (a slumming Wendie Malick) - and Foo, who started out as a stuntman, as Det. Lee, a near-automaton with mad martial arts skills, who comes to L.A. after a heist/massacre that involved a newbie cop who happens to be his sister.

The "fish out of water" might be TV's oldest premise, and "Rush Hour" lands in a rather long tradition of movies (a la the Charles Bronson-Tbshiro Mifune Western "Red Sun") and TV (including CBS' 1998 series "Martial Law") that involve dropping Asian heroes into Western settings. The formula, however, also perhaps unavoidably traffics in hoary stereotypes, even if Hires, a stand-up comic, dials down the clowning from Tlicker's much-lampooned performance. …

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