Tuesday, September 22, 2009

CSI Miami “Out of Time” A Giant Cheesefest

The Sunglasses: A Star is Born
(photo CBS)

After watching last night’s two hour season premiere of House “Broken,” the season premiere of CSI Miami (CBS) felt more like a comedy. The episode had more cheese than Wisconsin.

The episode involves the CSI team working to find Eric Delko (Adam Rodriguez) who had collapsed somewhere in an area the looks like the glades. Horatio Caine (David Caruso), Calleigh (Emily Procter) and a team of police frantically search to find him, and despite the fact that this is Florida and the glades, both which contains lots of alligators, the team walks through the watery area without concern of a gator attack.

When they find Delko, he has collapsed in front of what looks like a roadside emergency call box. When a helicopter spots him, the team rushed to his air and an ambulance is called. As Eric is rushed to the hospital, with the obligatory “We’re loosing him!” line, the flashbacks to the beginnings of the CSI team in 1997 begin. Of course, the spot where Eric was found seems to have a special memory of a case which helped to bring Eric to the team.

My problem is that I am not quite sure whose flashbacks we are seeing. Are they Horatio’s? Are they Eric’s? Are they memories of the assorted cast? It seems that in some of the flashbacks, only certain people were present, including quite a few seems with Jesse Cardoza (Eddie Cibrian), a new cast member to whom we have not yet been introduced in the present time. So whose memories are those?

We learn that in 1997, Calleigh is way too happy, perky, spunky, and horribly saccharine. Frank (Rex Linn) has a little more hair - but not much – and a 1980s moustache. There are phone ringing with bells, which in my opinion were already long gone for the most part in 1997. Eric is working for Flagler Tow. Alex (Khandi Alexander) is working as a medical examiner. Natalia (Eva La Rue) is working for the Feds. Horatio has a partner nicknamed “Sully” (Brad Leland) who is the stereotypical fat, annoying, jump to conclusions cop. There is no CSI team, and forensics is just a small room with one guy seemingly running the operation. There are no flashy glitzy special computer effects in forensics and I don’t recall seeing a computer in forensics, despite the fact that they were very prevalent in 1997. Horatio has slightly longer and fluffier hair, he isn’t wearing dark colors, he already stands with his hands on his hips, he already speaks in a soft whisper, but most importantly, he has NO SUNGLASSES. Yes, this is the episode where we see Eric make his valiant search for the perfect pair of sunglasses. I’ll spoil you now – he gives Horatio the pair towards the end of the episode and they have polarized lens with a titanium frames. They will soon take on a life of their own.

Horatio's team forms while working a case of what seems like a domestic murder at first blush but turns out to be murder at the hands of the gardener. Horatio doesn’t believe the husband killed his wife, and uses whatever meager tools he has to prove his point. At one point, though, the suspect seems shocked that he hasn’t seen some of the methods that is being used in this investigation, and my response is that this guy hadn’t likely been watching Law & Order all those years, where basic forensics were commonplace.

Jesse Cardoza spends what seems like half his time spraying a luminol –like substance all over the house where the murder was thought to occurred. I wondered, what made the area with blood light up in blue if he didn’t use a darkened room and an ultraviolet light as they use now? Did he have an extra special spray he was using or extra-special glowing vision glasses? Also, we are given the impression that in 1997 the entire criminal justice system, including the prosecutor Evan Talbot (Denis O'Hare), were unconcerned about the actual evidence and getting their man, and only Horatio had the desire and the smarts to get to the real facts and expose the real murderer. (This is what ultimately gets Horatio his job as head honcho of the new CSI team.)

Of course, Eric wakes up at the end of the episode and sees the whole team standing in his room. He offers a weak smile and Horatio is happy that Eric is alive, hopefully to supply him with more sunglasses for years to come.

This episode provided zero drama and frankly I think they could have done without the whole flashback scenarios. I never really cared about how the team came together, and nothing happened in this episode to make me care even more about them. The show still seems to be catering to the lowest common denominator when it comes to plot and dialog, and the flashback sequences and frequent use of split screens were feeble attempts to inject suspense and drama. I find myself wondering why I continue to watch this show. I suppose that something can be so bad that it still entertains. I can tell you one thing; I think I’ve had my month’s supply of cheese in this one episode.

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1 comment:

Sara said...

I thought Adam Rodriguez had decided to leave the show? When I saw the previews for this episode, I was so happy to see that CBS wardrobe had finally dressed Caruso in something other than black suits with dark shirts. Alas, it was but a dream. Even Jay Leno suggested that CSI Miami fans should record it so they could watch Leno first. Sounds like a good idea to me.