THE GLADES: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON
MOVIE: **1/2 (out of 5)
DVD EXPERIENCE: ***1/2 (out of 5)
BY KEVIN CARR
WHAT IT’S ABOUT
After being a detective in Chicago, Jim Longworth heads down to Florida for a new job when he butts heads one too many times with his superior. While in Florida, he works homicide cases between golf swings. His maverick style of presentation and law enforcement gives him an edge over many different kinds of criminals.
WHAT I LIKED
On the whole, while I don’t like Jim as a character (see more about that below), I do enjoy some of the secondary characters. The medical examiner, who eventually becomes Jim’s partner, is a good foil. Additionally, Jim’s boss at the station is decent as well.
Contrary to what people say in the special features, the setting of Florida isn’t all that original for a cop or crime show. After all, “Dexter” has Miami covered for homicide, and “Burn Notice” handles the seedy underbelly well. However, “The Glades” manages to make the series feel wholly Floridian but not fall into existing cliches. Here we have a different Florida for fans of police procedurals.
WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE
My biggest sticking point is with Jim as a character. He really offers no hook to the police procedural. You could replace him with virtually anyone, and you’d have the same show. After all, the maverick police detective with little respect for authority has been done to death. He alone doesn’t provide a good hook the way Richard Castle as a mystery writer, Patrick Jane as a mentalist, Adrian Monk as an obsessive-compulsive or even Shawn Spencer as a fake psychic does.
The writing behind the mysteries is also a little weak. It has some decent twists and turns, but I never feel that Jim is keeping ahead of things. Rather, like Freddy Jones in a “Scooby Doo!” cartoon, he kinda stumbles into the answer than delivers his summation with way too much arrogance.
From the writing angle (and the casting angle as well), there’s plenty of room for improvement. But I’m optimistic. After all, I figured out every damn mystery on the first season of “The Mentalist,” and that show’s writing improved greatly in its second season.
The DVD set has some decent bonus features, including deleted scenes, audio commentaries on select episodes, a gag reel and several featurettes. “Sunshine State of Mind” looks at the casting of the show, and “A Location for Murder” talks about shooting “The Glades” in Florida.
WHO’S GOING TO LIKE THIS MOVIE
Fans of basic-cable cop shows.