Will You Roll With NBC's Ironside?

IronsideWhat doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, especially if you have pecs of steel like Detective Robert Ironside (Blair Underwood, Dirty Sexy Money). The titular cop won’t let his paraplegia stop him from doing his job — but did the premise of NBC’s new police procedural (which premiered Wednesday at 10/9c) grab you enough to stop you from tuning out?

Based on the classic 1967 Raymond Burr series, this update, set in New York City, combines a straight procedural format with flashbacks to Ironside’s life before his debilitating injury. In the pilot, Ironside and his team investigate the involvement of a seemingly corrupt banker (guest-star Brian D’Arcy James, Smash) in the death of a promising young employee.

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Ironside’s hand-picked team (one of the perks of his post-injury settlement with the NYPD) is composed of a trio of attractive and recognizable cops: trust-fund baby Teddy (Neal Bledsoe, Smash), street-smart Holly (Spencer Grammer, Greek) and underwritten Virgil (Pablo Schreiber, Orange Is the New Black). Ironside also must contend with by-the-books boss Ed (Kenneth Choi, Sons of Anarchy) and former partner Gary (Brent Sexton, The Killing), whose incessant guilt for failing to stop that injurious bullet is driving Ironside away.

The series relies on expected procedural tropes — in the pilot alone, the show pulls the classic “rule-abiding Captain tries to interfere with maverick Detective’s shady police work, which ends up being necessary to solve the case” move twice. Underwood’s undeniable charm (and good looks), however, make the episode pop. If the series can make good use of its talented young co-stars, particularly by giving Schreiber more to do, and not sacrifice character for procedure, then Ironside may be able to find its place in the crowded cop canon.

But enough about what we thought: What was your take on Ironside? Grade the episode via the poll below, then hit the comments to back up your choice!

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60 Comments
  1. Boiler says:

    Thanks NBC for moving Chicago Fire to Tuesdays so Nashville gets help in ratings!!

  2. Allen says:

    Please don’t bother with further recaps. I can’t imagine anyone will be watching after that dreadful pilot episode.

    • Jovi says:

      They’d have done better to give the role to Chi McBride. Blair Underwood is ratings poison. JMO

    • Mary S says:

      I don’t know if it was dreadful; I didn’t watch it. From the previews I saw, it seemed to me that they were taking Ironside’s personality to a place it should not go. I am old enough to remember Raymond Burr in the role and as much as I like Blair Underwood, one of the comments in the preview indicated that he was not going to be the intelligent, thoughtful detective that I used to love. It would have pained me to see him played any differently than originally portrayed.

  3. I give my grade of Ironside an D. Guess we’re wondering if Blair Underwood is going to have another fail series just like he was with The Event and LAX (both series were on NBC).

  4. Darth Pablo says:

    Wheels and The Legman!!!

  5. Eurisko says:

    “Will you roll with Ironside” get it? Because he’s in a wheelchair, that rolls on wheels.HILARIOUS! Seriously TV line, you guys are too funny. What’s next? “Did you eat up Super Fun Night?” because she’s fat…

  6. Wrstlgirl says:

    Good grief people. So quick to jump to failure. Sheesh. A lot of shows are slow out of the gate with bad pilots only to become successful. People don’t even give shows a chance anymore.

  7. GeoDiva says:

    Saw the pilot on-line and gave it a C. Its neither great or bad. If there is nothing on, I’d waych, but not add it to my dvr.

  8. Jenna says:

    I will watch for Pablo alone; but I thought the whole cast was good and the writing average. Still, I give this one a B, and I’ll keep watching and hoping the writing improves and that the characters, especially PS, will get some good material.

  9. Morisot says:

    Too bad they didn’t set it in San Francisco (like the original.)

  10. Jules says:

    I only watched this for Blair Underwood. I would watch that guy read the phone book.

    • Marilyn Esterson says:

      I concur! He’s beautiful. Had to watch it twice. Once in awe of his beauty. Twice to watch the actual show…

  11. Dreamrose says:

    I didn’t see any compelling reason for the captain to let Ironside to get away with the stuff he pulls. He is a string of lawsuits just waiting to happen (Seriously, shooting the hostage?!). He’s a loose cannon at best, and a major liability at worst. To add to this, I decided that if you just replaced Ironside with Elliot Stabler, you’d be watching an episode of SVU. I didn’t really find anything to make this show stand out from the pack of a trillion other police procedurals.

    • Eli says:

      Ah Dreamrose, you are making a classical mistake. You are actually using your brain while watching a network show. Everyone knows you are supposed to shut your brain down while watching network tv… ;)

      • Dreamrose says:

        Haha, I know! I also noticed that Ironside’s guilt-ridden ex-partner Gary was played by Brent Sexton, who also played Charlie Crews’s guilt-ridden ex-partner Bobby in “Life” about five years ago…

  12. Ange says:

    I loved the episode.

  13. DavidSask says:

    So bad and deserves a quick cancellation!

  14. Badpenny says:

    I liked the character. I liked the concept. I wasn’t fond of the story. The story seemed to be trying too hard. It was forced rather then flowing. I’ll give it my typical 3 tries for a series I’m on the fence about.

  15. Zoe says:

    I rather liked it, actually. Blair Underwood is always a good thing. Also ohai WIlliam Lewis (seriously, Pablo’s been everywhere lately and it’s a bit hilarious). What’s a bit disappointing is that you didn’t recap SVU. I thought you were going to start doing that again, but noooo.

    • Marilyn Esterson says:

      I love him and agree – he’s always a good thing. Think, if given the material, he’s an excellent actor. Really really like Pablo. He plays a great maniac. A smiling maniac. He IS everywhere lately! I really enjoy the show. This is a tough crowd…

  16. Maddie says:

    I really liked the show. I thought it was different from other shows. I absolutely love Blair Underwood.

    • Eli says:

      I don’t say this often, but either your tv watching experience is limited to the Disney Channel and TLC, or you’re an idiot.

      This show is about as run-of-the-mill procedural as a show can get. The only thing setting it apart is the ridiculous premise of the lead being in a wheelchair. This show might have been decent 20 years ago, but in todays tv universe, this show is pathetic.

    • Marilyn Esterson says:

      Finally! Some positive comments about Blair. He’s got it going on from every angle. I will be beyond dissappointed if this show gets canceled.

  17. Bob Timms says:

    I would probably watch it if it was set in San Francisco like the original. I’m sick of all these shows set in NYC. So lazy and unoriginal.

  18. Meghan says:

    Too much man pain.

  19. Zach says:

    Needed more Spencer Grammer. Can’t believe someone so charming is the daughter of an ignoramus like Kelsey.

  20. Really says:

    STOP WITH THE REMAKES AND REBOOTS.

  21. J W says:

    Raymond Burr is rolling over in his grave. Attempting to remake IRONSIDE is like trying to remake PERRY MASON. Neither can be done because Burr made them both so iconic that anything else is just a pale imitation.

  22. Marco says:

    It was ok… but this new Ironside is a JERKOFF!

  23. Sheldon W. says:

    Blah, blah, blah, maverick, blah, blah, blah, wheelchair, blah, blah, blah, procedural. Yawn.

    Maybe one one-hundredth as good as the original.

  24. TV execs need to learn…. if you’re going to remake a beloved show from the past…. STICK TO THE ORGINAL and quit trying to remake it into some hip modern-day cool show young people will watch. THAT’S NOT THE AUDIENCE YOU’RE AFTER if you’re remaking a show from 30 years ago.

  25. John Fitz says:

    Remember your audience. Blair Underwood was good in LA Law, but Raymond Burr made the Ironside character work for all of us. Stop remaking the same “in name only” shows. TV is I going the way of cloning the movies,

  26. Missy says:

    I liked it a lot. Hope it sticks around. I am not even a huge Blair Underwood fan, but he has some serious acting chops and I admire the skill. I also like that he is kinda like the “House” version of a cop. I like mixing it up and not the same old stuff.

  27. JAMANDAFAN says:

    Ironside is a really bad cop. I imagine most of his cases are thrown out on a technicality because of all the laws he breaks.

  28. empp says:

    I got through about 12 minutes and shut if off. As far as I was concerned, there was nothing redeeming about it. I am old enough to remember the old Ironside, so clearly I am not in the target audience. This show is a complete waste of some excellent talent. I hope it either improves dramatically, for those who will continue to watch, or they cancel it, so the talent can move on to better projects. I totally agree this was like the character Elliot Stabler, who I felt was too violent and over the top, in a wheelchair. And it was Ironside in name only. It is a shame that it used nothing good about the original in this current attempt.

  29. Walter says:

    12 minutes into it a man of his decent is coaching hockey! Too much …

    • Mary S says:

      I had just seen it once, having not realized when it was on…and now they are cancelling it, just as I set my DVR to automatically record it so I don’t miss any more episodes. I am now down to one NBC offering that I watch, and it will be off the air soon, also. I don’t know when, but I know that they only ordered a short season of SVU and they are already setting up the finale. Munch left last week, Olivia has FINALLY been offered a promotion…they are moving people around…creating an acceptable finale for the series. And then I will have no reason to tune to this Never Been Clever network again.

    • Mary S says:

      Walter, your comment makes no sense unless you are trying to say “descent”- and then it still makes no sense. Unless you are trying to say that a man in a wheelchair is not the first coach you’d consider for any sport…OH! are you making a racist comment about a black man coaching hockey? Got to give you credit for the effort, it just fell flat. On its face. Like you.

  30. Kate Farrell says:

    Cancelling Ironside??? Another good drama with excellent acting (like The Killing) gone. 6 mil. viewers not enough, NBC??? Please…..

  31. I Can’t Believe Is That There Are Actually People At NBC That Come Up With Great Shows Such As The IRONSIDE Remake.Which Canceling The Show After 3 Episodes Was The Wrong Move! There Are Many More Viewers Other Than Me That Are Disgusted With Watching,Sorry For Calling It This,But Women Oriented TV Shows.We Like A Good Action & Drama Show Which In My Opinion Ironside Was.Like Another Person Comented Isn’t 6 Million Viewers Enough? I Guess Not! All I Can Say Is That It Is Very Upsetting.

  32. JR says:

    I liked the new series Ironside but I believe it is going off the air because viewers can’t stand seeing a strong black man with brains being displayed on television. There is a lot of insecurities concerning black males in America among the larger majority population.

    • Jill says:

      You do have to wonder. . . here’s a black dude who was by no means the affable Negro-next- door, posed standing catty-corner behind a white guy for the poster. Just saying.

  33. Jill says:

    It wasn’t bad. It was tough and gritty, I admit. But it seems foolhardy to junk a show after four episodes with a cast that strong. China Beach had the lamest entire first season ever, but ABC stuck with it and the writers clued in that the cast could handle better material. But NBC is always running on to the next big thing, which never seems to come.

    • Kate Farrell says:

      Jill, right you are, along with many other good series trys…!!!

      • Mary S says:

        N(ever) B(een) C(lever) has a habit of getting rid of good shows while keeping trash. Their demographic is 18-34 and everything is geared for that group. It has gotten to the point that I am afraid to get too involved with any show, because as soon as I really start liking it, they cancel it. The only remaining show that I watch is SVU, and I have heard several rumors that it will be cancelled soon, also.

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