Human Target On the Bubble: Keep Or Cut?

Come mid-May (if not occasionally sooner), the networks will be making some tough calls as to which shows will return for the 2011-12 TV season, and which should start packing their bags. In addition to our ongoing “Renew Our Show!” Bracket Tournament, TVLine will single out some “bubble” shows and survey their prospects. The first one in our crosshairs: Fox’s Human Target.

THE SHOW: Human Target (Fox)

THE TIME SLOT: Most recently, Wednesdays at 9/8c.

‘Renew Our Show!’ Sweet 16 Bracket Tournament: Chuck Vs. Human Target

THE CASE FOR KEEPING: Most simply said, we need testosterone TV like this, and ever since the clock ran out on 24‘s Jack Bauer, it’s been Christopher Chance’s (Mark Valley) mantle to carry, and his alone. (Really, who else is walking away slo-mo from fiery explosions anymore? It’s a dying art.) Plus, we already “lost” the excellent Chi McBride once before, when Pushing Daisies got plucked. And thirdly, I give you four words: Jackie. Earle. Frickin’. Haley.

THE CASE FOR CUTTING: Some argue that Human Target misfired in its second season by adding to its manly mix two female series regulars (as well as subtracting the original theme song). I will argue that the character of Ames (played by Janet Montgomery), if thought out more thoroughly, could provide true value to the team. Indira Varma‘s Ilsa, however, seems to be on hand for primarily one reason: to stir up some “Will They/Won’t They?” angst-filled dynamic with Chance, and folks, this just isn’t the show for that. We were absolutely A-OK with Chance having intermittent romantic interests played by gorge guest stars (such as, swoon, Emmanuelle Vaugier).

Renewal Scorecard: What’s Coming Back? What’s Getting Axed? What’s on the Bubble?

Hit the comments section to make your own case for keeping or cutting Human Target!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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215 Comments
  1. Laurel says:

    Cut it
    Never did care for the show

  2. nellycooke@hotmail.co.uk says:

    THIS IS THE BEST KEEEEEEEEEEEEP IIIIIIIIIIIIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. mike morrow says:

    keep it good show

  4. Phoebe says:

    KEEP IT!!!!!!!

  5. Elizabeth says:

    Please, for the love of all that’s Jackie Earle Haley, keep it. You have to love a show that blows the crap out of everything in sight one second and then makes you laugh out loud the next. And I have been in love with Indira Varma since the “Torchwood” pilot, so her on my TV every week is a win all the way around.

  6. P says:

    Keep it! This show is one of my favs! I agree that Ilsa can go but otherwise, def must keep!

  7. Sofie says:

    Please keep Chi McBride on my TV, FOX!!! I also happen to love the show.

  8. QuickDraw says:

    Human Target is a keeper! Best show on the air (when you can find it!). The second season continued to build on the action and human. Great cast, and loved the total action–missing from many shows now. Please Do Not Cancel!! KEEP HUMAN TARGET!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  9. Christina says:

    Keep it. While they did misfire with the Ames and Ilsa characters I still really like the Chance-Guerrero-Winston trio’s exploits.

  10. GeekGirl13 says:

    I will be so disappointed if they don’t keep this show AND Lie to Me. They are hands down my favorite shows on Fox. I agree that Ames could be better thought out but I like her all the same, and while I like Ilsa/Varma, I don’t see her with Chance. In fact, my mom and I both think there is better chemistry for romance between Varma and JEFrickinH. Besides, I just can’t see Chance in a relationship for any length of time, particularly with a team member.

  11. TigerNightmare says:

    While I HATE the new theme song and greatly miss Bear McCreary’s work and felt that season 1 was much more enjoyable, it’s still entertaining, escapist fun with three awesome actors carrying the show. While the two new female cast members didn’t ruin the show for me, I felt that they didn’t really gel into the cast as well as new cast members did on a show like Angel. But there’s still time to make them all work. Maybe they can have a highly serialized season 3? That’d be awesome.

    • Sharona says:

      I feel like a more serialized season would be great for this show – maybe even a shorter one so it doesn’t get 24 + mountain lion syndrome. Plus they could keep up the quality of the stunts.

  12. Jay says:

    I’d like it to stick around but adding Ilsa killed the show. So I won’t miss it as much as I would have if they canceled it after the first season.

  13. Definitely a keeper! I look forward to every episode. And the end of season….whooooo….can’t wait for next season to start!

  14. ranger99 says:

    He!! yes – bring HUMAN TARGET BACK!!! I love Ilsa and Chance!

  15. lore says:

    I liked the second season of Human Target much better than the first one. I thought Ilsa was a good addition – she tempers the testosterone by asking the difficult questions.

    Also, I agree with above who said it was unrealistic for a man like Chance to keep having romantic trysts over and over again. Season 1’s Woman of the Week didn’t add to the plots – we knew they’d fade away at the end of the episode. Ilsa or any consistent female character is someone we can feel invested in, becoming part of the fabric of the ongoing plot.

    I’m on the fence about the Ames character. She’s clearly there for the T&A factor, but she grew on me anyway. Pairing her often with Guerro was a smart move; he doesn’t give her an inch, yet she keeps trying to take one. Interesting.

    I don’t care about the theme song. I do care that they keep the women. The short, testosterone-laden first season was fun enough to get me to tune in to the second season. But it was the deepening of all the characters through introspection, revelation of history and the moral questions raised by Ilsa that had me *looking forward* to the episodes of season 2.

    Keep Human Target and keep it as-is!

  16. Bella says:

    Keep the show. Get rid of Ames. She went from being rightfully terrified of Guererro to being snarky and sarcastic to him. She whines and questions everything. I absolutely cannot stand her character. I didn’t like the character of Ilsa either for mainly the same reasons, she questioned everything, but she seems to have eased up a little so she’s grown on me a little too. What we liked about the show was the almost non stop action. With the advent of the two women, the action has slowed down considerably and they’re just plain irritating. Take Ames out for sure, and only bring Ilsa around every once in a while.

  17. Don J says:

    Honestly out of the 13 episodes from season 2, I liked maybe 3 or 4 tops. IMO, the new showrunner Matt Miller ruined Human Target. He made it into a goofy, action comedy like Chuck and Leverage (even though I like those shows) than what it was in season 1 which was a straight forward action show with beautiful women as the clients of the week. Season 1 made me feel like I was watching a weekly James Bond movie and the humor wasn’t forced.

  18. Brad says:

    Keep it. Mark Valley is pretty good. Chi McBride, us Chicago people must stick together, besides he is a great actor.
    I give you four words: Jackie. Earle. Frickin’. Haley!!!

  19. Moe D says:

    keep it, where else could you put an awesome character like Guerrero. He is.calm and ruthless – a bit scary if on the receiving end.

  20. helena hasegawa says:

    KEEP HUMAN TARGET. i LOVE THIS SHOW.

  21. ThatBob says:

    I like to think that, somewhere out there, Guerrero is hunting down Fox executives and quietly explaining why they need to renew this show, or else. Best frickin’ character on TV.

  22. Liz O says:

    LOVE,LOVE, LOVE, HUMAN TARGET!!!! WE DON’T HAVE 24 ANYMORE! GOT TO KEEP THIS SHOW!!! I HAVE SEEN EVERY EPISODE SINCE SEASON 1!! WOULD DEFINITELY RATHER THE FORMAT GO BACK TO WHAT IT WAS LIKE IN SEASON ONE! PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF OUR ACTION MEN !! KEEP THIS SHOW ALIVE!!!!

  23. george says:

    Keep!

    I agree that Ilsa isn’t the best of the characters, but the rest truly are a great mix. And they have good energy. Some episodes have a bit of the Usual Suspects to them, some of them feel a bit James Bond. It’d be nice to have at least one comic book show stay on the boob tube. (or on the internets, as I tend to stream it…)

  24. W0NK042 says:

    - I agree, if it came down to it: Save Fringe, with Lie to Me a (very) close 2nd, with Human Target distant 3rd.

  25. dkp says:

    I LOVE HUMAN TARGET!!!! PLEASE don’t cancel it, Fox. I was sceptical about the addition of the two women, but I really like them, especially Ilsa. I LOVE the potential romance between Ilsa and Chance. I think she brings out the vulnerability in him and his fear to take a chance, so to speak.

  26. Liz says:

    KEEP IT!!! I just started watching this around Christmas and it’s one of my favorite new shows. There aren’t any other shows on tv right now that compare to it. I’d like to see where one more season would take it.

  27. janders says:

    It’s a great show! Keep it!

  28. Carrie says:

    I agree 100% with the assessment in this article. I really liked this show they way it was. The addition of Ames, she is fun and was not used nearly enough throughout the season. I really would have liked to see Guerrero work more with Ames and show her his methods and ‘mentor’ her more. She has a great deal of potential and is cute and funny (always a good mix).

    Ilsa bores me, she has no purpose of in the show other than interact with Chance. They need to get back to the action and get rid of Ilsa, I would rather see him back with the CIA agent from one of the first episodes if there has to be a ‘will they/won’t they’ for the show. She was much more interesting.

  29. txgina says:

    KEEP. KEEP. KEEP. KEEP.

  30. Sharona says:

    Love Human Target and it would be awesome to see it renewed. If I had to choose, I’d go with Fringe, but HT is a great watch. Oddly, I think I’d prefer if it was only renewed for 13 episodes – it would keep the plots from getting stale. I really liked the addition of Ames and Ilsa, although I was surprised by the Chance/Ilsa romance implications. Somehow that didn’t work for me as well as Ilsa being a smart businesswoman who figured out that this was a highly unique investment opportunity.

  31. adventurespecialist says:

    KEEP IT!!!

  32. Brian says:

    Why is this show even on the bubble? For a FOX show, it looks like it brings in solid numbers, especially when it is not moving around.

  33. Jg says:

    Keep it!!!!

  34. M says:

    There is nothing else worth watching on Wednesday. However, I don’t care what day it’s on, I’ll watch it. Please keep it. Stop making the mistake of canceling great shows before they had the chance to really hit their stride! Serenity…Anyone?!

  35. paul says:

    I hope fox keeps human target, I think this show is an action packed fill in for 24. Every time fox creates a show I start to follow it seems they cancel it for no apparent reason, and I am very sick of it!

  36. astrid says:

    KEEP KEEP KEEP! I think I might be in the minority, but I thought the show actually got BETTER with the addition of Ames and Ilsa and I’d love to see them grow into more productive characters in another season!

  37. Juan says:

    This show deserves to stick around. Mark Valley is a great actor and so is Jackie Earle Haley!!!! Guerrero FTW!!!

  38. Jenn says:

    I watched Human Target’s first season which didn’t impress me as much and then the last few episodes of the second season got me really into the show. I think the addition of the ladies was a great idea and certainly added another element. Love the original characters: Chance, Guerrero and Winston and how they have developed in Season 2. Yes, keep the show! Human Target makes me laugh as well as intrigued. Not many shows on air can do that nowadays.

  39. Aaron says:

    Human Target NEEDS to stay. The show has really come into its own. Ilsa is fine, but Ames needs to go. The main problem the show has had is that it could never stay on a CONSISTANT TIME SLOT. That has been its real “bane of existance”. I say to FOX, “keep it on its own consistant time slot for 13 more episodes and lets go from there.”

  40. HT is good escapist TV. They look like they are having fun making the show, the good vibe comes off on screen, and it’s based on a comic book, so it CAN’T take itself too seriously!
    Keep HT!

  41. Dave says:

    DEFINITELY A KEEPER! Ever since “24” left, there’s been no other true action series on TV. I actually like the 2nd season dynamic with adding the extra (female) characters. I think a 3rd season will allow it to grow…much the way it did for “Chuck”.

  42. Brock says:

    CUT.

    I tried most of the first season and it didn’t captivate me… and I follow over 50 shows a week (given the schedule many don’t air at once, save sweeps time, this week it’s 20-odd).

    Fox needs to loosen it’s schedule. Plus, it’s filling a few hours a week this Spring with X Factor… once that ends Idol gets 3 hours a week.

    Sunday is solid, Bones works too & then there is the X Factor/Idol duo…. I think Fox needs some strength in there and it has good pilot prospects.

  43. Dj says:

    I love the show, but I couldn’t stand the Lisa/Chance thing. Ames was great. Bring the show back but get rid of Indira Varma.

  44. Sharon says:

    I like HT ,maybe SY FI could pick it up?

  45. Dijea says:

    This so needs to be renewed for several reasons – its pure fun – love the action. Love Mark Valley, but again Guerrero by the man Jackie Earle Haley. Seriously? He’s perfect!

  46. Tracy says:

    My husband and I love this show and never miss an episode. I love the men. The characters are fantastic, they have great chemistry and we finally have an action show rather than another cop show or hospital show. It’s fun to watch.

    I am NOT a fan of Fringe or Lie to Me.

  47. Sourabh says:

    It wasn’t the best of moves, but it wasn’t as bad, as say the addition of Tricia Helfer to Dark Blue.

    The action, the comedy, were all still there. It’s a good show that deserved to be on air, timeslot and day don’t matter, although Friday seems pretty okay.

  48. tree979 says:

    Human Target has EARNED a third season. Despite all the last minute changes to the schedule, and the generally shabby way that Fox has treated the show, Human Target has still pulled in respectable numbers and has a loyal (but disgruntled and put-upon) fan base.

    As for Ames and Ilsa: I want to see Ames displaying some decent skills that are of use to the team. There’s no reason why she should just be picking the occasional pocket and hanging around as eye candy. Teach the girl how to kick-box, give her a gun, teach her how to throw knives. For the love of God teach her how to do something other than pout and complain!

    I’d like to see Ilsa as a more distant figure, more like M to Chance’s Bond. There’s no reason why a bit of flirting couldn’t still go on but the whole “will-they-won’t-they” dance never bodes well for a series long-term. Unless Ilsa suddenly turns her back on her life of wealth and privilege in order to throw herself in harms way, like the rest of the team, she will always be dead weight.

  49. MelindaB says:

    I’ve watched HT from the beginning. The theme song change didn’t bother me; I liked the first one better, but the new one grew on me. I liked the thought of introducing Ames, who was supposedly this master thief who eluded everyone but Chance’s team, but once she joined the group, she was written as not knowing much. I like Indira Varma, but I’m not crazy about how Ilsa has been written. I’d love for the show to stick around, though–I was happily surprised when it got a second season, and would like to be pleasantly surprised again.

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