What 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.
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!