Good Cop (Season 1) – So, So

Rating (2 out of 5)

After watching 3 episodes of this show, I am going to call it quits.  This program hasn’t decided what it wants to be, a drama, a crime story or a comedy.  Someone call me when the decide, because there are good elements here.

Plot: Tony Caruso Jr. (Josh Groban) is a straight by the book cop and his father Tony Sr. (Tony Danza) was a naughty cop and has recently been released from jail.  They live together as part of his dad’s parole.  Together they have to find a way to co-exist and solve the crime of day.

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What I Liked:  I liked Tony’s partner Cora (Monica Barbaro) and how she tries to annoy Tony Jr. from week to week.  They seem to work off each other well.  However, Cora was Tony Sr.’s parole officer, and would have liked to see that develop a little longer before her joining them as detectives.

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There are attempts to setup a core set of characters to bring out the comedy every week.  Burl (Isiah Whitlock Jr. ) the older black detective who likes to sleep and Ryan (Bill Kottkamp) the tech geek for the detectives are two of the characters they try to establish.  I see the potential but they really fail to make them humorous… maybe a smile.

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What I Didn’t Like:  The show forces links back to Tony Sr.  I get it for the first case, or even 3 total cases in a season, but the first 3 cases is a bit of a stretch.  Tony Sr. and Tony Jr could talk at the bar with Tony Sr.’s friends, similar to psych.  Show some imagination and figure out a different way to work the father into the story every week.

They tried to add humor, but it wasn’t delivered successfully.  I think the trouble is they are confused with how to position Tony Jr.  If he is by the book, he would report everyone.  So when he finds Burl sleeping, is it funny, because he is going to report him or is it a drama because they are friends and he wakes him up.  I am reminded of Monk, where Monk was constantly struggled with his problem with the police, family, etc.  That made the show funny.

Yes, yes, this is the problem.  In the 3rd episode, if he was the “Good” cop and did everything by the book, he would have reported the fugitive.  That creates the tension, and then the humor of him solving the mystery after he reported the crime would have created the humor.  Instead, he help hide the fugitive.

There are also missed moments with Cora to bring out that relationship and humor.  She asked to box her in the episode.  While they didn’t have to do it.  Had they come back at the end of the episdoe with a little bout and because his dad taught him when he was young, he surprises her and beats her.  This would create a little humor and reveal a bit about the characters.

While the story would lead you to believe this is about the “Good Copy”, Tony Jr., the emphasis of the story appears to be Tony Sr.  Because they haven’t focused on one of them, the story meanders and the show suffers because of the lack of focus..

Conclusion: A nice foundation was established, but they failed to bring out enough humor in the characters and have created a very flat and lifeless show.

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