TOUCH: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON
MOVIE: *1/2 (out of 5)
DVD EXPERIENCE: ** (out of 5)
Kiefer Sutherland as MARTIN BOHM
Gugu Mbatha-Raw as CLEA HOPKINS
David Mazouz as JAKE BOHM
Created by: Tim Kring
Studio: 20th Century Fox
BY KEVIN CARR
Once Kiefer Sutherland’s popular series “24” ended a couple years ago, Hollywood has been scrambling to get another hit. The makers of “24” went on to produce the quite excellent series “Homeland.” Sutherland took a more down-to-earth turn with the new series “Touch.” The complete first season is now available on DVD and Blu-ray.
“Touch” tells a story of numerology. Sutherland plays Martin Bohm, a former reporter whose wife was killed in the 9/11 attacks. His son Jake (David Mazouz) has severe developmental issues. He doesn’t like to be touched, he doesn’t speak and he is obsessed with numbers. Eventually, Martin discovers that Jake sees patterns where others don’t. Jake uses numbers to communicate with his father, and soon they get swept up in a greater story which shows all things are connected.
Tim Kring of “Heroes” fame is the showrunner for “Touch.” And it shows. It shows with all the same problems that “Heroes” faced, especially as the series wore on past season two.
Like “Heroes,” “Touch” gets needlessly convoluted at times and often doesn’t make any pragmatic sense. It’s meant to show that things are all connected, but the numbers that bring people together aren’t relevant to anything and result from completely arbitrary and unrelated things.
“Touch” has some great people behind it, and it’s nice to see Sutherland working in a series again. However, he’s carrying all of his Jack Bauer baggage with him. He doesn’t do enough to differentiate the character than the one in “24,” often employing the same delivery and acting ticks that become confusing to the viewer.
But the real problem with “Touch” is that it’s just too far out there. Like “Heroes” in season four, this show tries to be oh-so-clever with twists and turns. However, it has a saccharine-sweet overly goopy sense of optimism that I found too hard to swallow.
Finally, as sensitive as I am to children with developmental disorders, and as good as it is for a show to raise awareness of individuals in the autistic spectrum, the obligatory writing of a child with this condition is quickly becoming exploitative and trite. Sensitivity is good. Cashing in on a trend is not.
The season one DVD comes with all eleven episodes on three discs. Special features include deleted scenes, an extended pilot episode, plus two featurettes: “Fate’s Equation” and “Touch the World.”