Jun 11, 2014


Created by Steven Boncho, the latest TNT crime drama Murder in the First seems to be a remake of his earlier production, Murder One. Like in Murder One, only one case is being solved throughout the entire season, however the newer show is telling the story through the point of view of the two inspectors investigating the crime, and not the lawyers defending the suspect(s). The series is set in San Francisco.

A great number of familiar faces stars in Murder in the First. The leads are Taye Diggs (Private Practice), playing the part of Terry English, and Kathleen Robertson (Kitty from Boss), portraying Hildy Mulligan. The role of the main suspect, Erich Blunt, an arrogant CEO of a tech company, ingeniously named APPLSN, is played by Tom Felton (Draco from Harry Porter), one of his lawyers is impersonated by James Cromwell (American Horror Story, Betrayal), Steven Weber (2 Broke Girls) acts as one of Blunt's private jet pilots, and so on.

Both of the leads have personal struggles to overcome. Hildy is going through a divorce (it is such a cliche to make her live the way a single guy would - not capable to make a proper breakfast for her daughter and not giving a damn about how messy her house is). Terry has a much more serious drama to deal with: his wife has stage four pancreatic cancer (I can't help but think they chose this specific type of cancer, because everyone knows about it, now that Steve Jobs died from it). Both of these issues seem to be unrelated to the homicides that they investigate, which isn't a good sign: if the murder case does not affect the main characters, what is the point of it, really? 

After all the nearly pornographic scenes Robertson had in Boss, her exposure of various parts of bare skin in Murder in the First seems almost innocent. However, the series can't let us live our lives without some proper nudity, therefore one of the victims, Cindy Strauss, just had to be murdered naked. I hope this will be treated as a clue, otherwise it'd be simply cheesy.

There is nothing unorthodox about how the story develops, the twists are typical for the genre. All what's happened so far implies that Felton's character is the murderer, which means it's safe to assume he has nothing to do with either of the homicides. My money is on the pilot.

All in all, it's just another cop drama, not the worst one, mainly thanks to the cast, but after the world has seen True Detective and Fargo, describing Murder in the First with any adjective other than "mediocre" would be too generous.

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