Sep 28, 2012


It is with great prejudice that I watched the first episode of Vegas (CBS), as I thought, it would be a trashy western, resembling Walker, Texas Ranger, with tough cowboy guys and pretentious speeches, with ruthless criminals and corrupted officials, with the main character being the only one who can solve all the crimes, win a fight alone against three guys and just carry his riffle with him wherever he goes. Well, it was all of the above, and yet I quite liked it.

Dennis Quaid as Ralph Lamb
The two main characters are rancher Ralph Lamb (Dennis Quaid), an old guy with permanently angry face, most of the time armed, you know, the kind that the Republican party is constantly trying to appeal to; and Vincent Savino (Michael Chiklis), a great businessman, casino owner and, surprise-surprise, a cruel gangster. Honestly speaking, so far I liked the latter more. As I said, he seems to have great entrepreneurial and, for that matter, managerial skills, and if he wasn't a gangster (can't blame him for being one, though, a man needed starting capital) he would still be able to make money on this casino. Plus, he seems to have some sort of principals, as we see him beat up his subordinate's servant, who took the liberty, without Savino's order, to 'lay his hands' on one of the casino workers that was supposed to know where the current Sheriff is hiding. So no initiative goes unpunished after all.

Michael Chiklis as Vincent Savino
Carrie-Anne Moss is playing an Assistant District Attorney, Katherine O’Connell, who was raised on the ranch next to Lamb's, so she knows him well. She'll probably become Lamb's crush, if I may use that word; so far Moss's character wasn't convincing in terms of her set of professional skills, but she looks great in these 60's style clothes.

Carrie-Anne Moss as Katherine O'Connel
The recreation of the time when the story is happening is solid, it is interesting that things characteristic to that period of American history in this region matter to the story line, like how the dead body was discovered by pilots performing a sweep before the next blast on a nuclear test site. I'm looking forward to seeing more of such references.

It was a simpier time when everyone could punch anyone in the face; when mayor had the power to release an arrested man and put him in charge of investigation of a resonant murder; when Sheriff could lock up the lawyer in a cell with a bunch of his criminal clients; when evidence found during the search without a warrant still counted as evidence.

The episode followed the rules of a typical police procedural. First, a body of a governor's niece, Samantha Meade, is found, we later learn that she worked in Savino's casino verifying credit limits for highrollers. Lamb is put in charge of this investigation, because the current Sheriff is hiding somewhere from the gangsters' wrath. He asks his brother Jack and his son Dixon for assistance.In return mayor promises to deal with airplanes flying above Ralph's ranch and scaring his cattle.

Samantha Meade
We meet a number of suspects, like Samantha's boyfriend and a bunch of bikers, but it's Ralph's sneaking around in casino what helps establish that, before her unfortunate death, the victim had a meeting with a guy called Stuart Mills, an employee of the bank, who is thought to be stealing from his place of employment, to gamble and who's now nowhere to be found. Lamb finds him in cheap motel, but Mills says he's not the murderer, he believes that Perrin, Samantha's boss, who had a secret deal with him killed the girl. Eventually, Perrin is brought to justice, but not before some chasing and shooting tires was performed. In a meanwhile, Savino kills the current Sheriff, who was drawn out to the desert by Katherine's boss, District Attorney. After the dead body of the former Sheriff is found, Lamb takes his place. He is officially the law now.

As I said, it turned out much better than I expected, so I'll keep watching it.

Score 8/10

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