The Catch Series Premiere

The Catch: Does Shondaland's New Drama Have a Hold on You?

Aside from the fact that The Catch is filling ABC’s Thursdays-at-10 time slot and counts Shonda Rhimes among its executive producers, the show has very little in common with its #TGIT predecessor, How to Get Away With Murder.

That is to say, unlike the Viola Davis drama, The Catch‘s series premiere doesn’t include any mommy issues or corpses in rugs or scales of justice trophies that double as lethal weapons.

In fact, the freshman series might be the most lighthearted fare that Shondaland currently offers, with its Pitbull-fueled soundtrack and brightly colored set pieces. And depending on how dark you like your Thursday-night programming — on a scale from 1 to Derek Shepherd dying — you either loved or hated The Catch‘s debut.

Before you give us your thoughts on the first episode, let’s go over the basics: Mireille Enos (The Killing) stars as Alice Vaughan, a private investigator who dedicates most of her time to tracking down Mr. X, an elusive con man who has stolen millions of dollars from two of the biggest clients at Alice’s firm. As it turns out, the mystery man is Alice’s own fiancé, Christopher Hall (Parenthood‘s Peter Krause), and she finally puts those pieces together when Christopher ups and leaves her, taking her $1.3 million in savings with him.

Once Alice realizes that she’s been completely and totally played by her husband-to-be (after she purchased her wedding dress, tragically), she and her co-workers double down on catching Christopher — and they almost do. Although Krause’s character tries to remain one step ahead of the PIs at all times, they chalk up a win before the hour is up, successfully hacking into Christopher and his colleagues’ offshore accounts and stealing back money that was theirs in the first place. (Which isn’t to say Alice and her team are anywhere near catching Christopher. They’re just less behind.)

And therein lies another glaring disparity between The Catch and How to Get Away With Murder. Whereas Murder ended its pilot episode with a jaw-dropping cliffhanger — that dead body going up in flames is (spoiler alert!) Annalise Keating’s husband! — The Catch doesn’t introduce any of those “OMG!”-worthy moments that have become a staple of Shondaland programming.

Don’t get us wrong: We’ve got nothing against the subtle storytelling that showrunner Allan Heinberg and his writers are employing. But on the heels of Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal, two #TGIT programs that have almost succeeded in making “twisty” a real word, we were hoping The Catch‘s series premiere would add a few more sharp turns to its highly advertised game of cat-and-mouse.

But that’s just our take. What did you think of The Catch‘s debut? Grade the series premiere in our poll below, then hit the comments to back up your choice!

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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  1. Bryce says:

    I really liked it! As much as I love Peter Krause, the trailer before the recast felt more natural than this pilot. I’m hoping the cast clicks into place more by the end of the season, and I hope people watch. Excited to see how the show sustains itself. Sidenote: Anyone else distracted by how Enos and Krause have the same color hair, even though it’s a rare color? They looked very brother and sister to me.

  2. I thought it was fantastic! I was a little worried because reviews have been so-so but I thought it was great. I think Mireille and Peter were amazing, especially Mireille. There is something so likeable about her. I’m already liking the side characters too and I want to know what happens next. Plus, I buy the love story between Alice and Christopher. Loved the Pilot and I’ll definitely watch next week.

    • puma says:

      I was also a bit hesitant after the critical scores kept dropping in the last few days, but I’m glad I gave it a chance because I really liked it : the two leads are excellent, the supporting cast has potential and the whole thomascrownaffair-vibe works really well. They do have to pick up the pace a little bit but other than that, so far so good.

    • Karen ward says:

      These actors totally captivated me.. I feel their attraction to each other especially Peter Strauss , he is so in love with Alice but does’nt know what to do! I love Mireille Enos, (amazing in The Killing!) and amazing in this story.. Playful yet strong.. Also love the picture, ( of them), at least it feels like them, and wardrobe..and sets.. All beautiful!!!! WELL DONE !!!!

  3. Sorry…… NOT a fan !!!

  4. ChicagoDan says:

    Honestly I watched for ME – huge fan because of The Killing. Sadly, the pilot revealed nothing important that wasn’t covered during the 30-second promos. I assume it’s going to case-of-week with the quest to ‘catch’ Chrisopher. It’s going to be tough to balance because if Alice is so great at her job and she continues to fail, it will undercut the character’s (and her elite team’s) credibility.

  5. mazel tov says:

    Won’t be coming back for episode #2.

  6. ? says:

    Hard pass.

  7. Debbie Duffy says:

    May be if it had a different actors. Won’t be coming back for #2.

  8. Amy says:

    I liked it. It was light and fun. I liked the characters, especially the supporting ones. I bet it is going to get a little twisty at some point, so hopefully people will give it a chance.

  9. MzTeaze says:

    It wasn’t twisty. But it reminded me of White Collar in a good way. I will be back.

    I watched the original pilot trailer. I can see why they recast the show because Peter Krause looks more age appropriate. The first guy was nice looking but it looked a lot like May December con from the jump. Looking to watch the season to see the progress.

    • Sheila says:

      I liked the White Collar vibe too. I don’t need the twists from the other Shonda shows in this one. That would become unwieldy and tiresome. I will happily add this show to my rotation.

  10. Hellas13 says:

    Probably the best of her shows But I doubt it’ll get the reception it deserves.

  11. It was a fantastic show about what i expected in a a P.I. show..Love both leads.

  12. Jan says:

    I was very disappointed, because of the loud music and singing. It was quite
    distracting. I think without the distraction, it would have been good.

  13. Prunella says:

    It reminded me of the Thomas Crown Affair, only with B actors and a B plot. I am not familiar with Peter Krause but I find him generic and uncharismatic so – miscast. Mireille Enos almost but not quite can pull off the part. She is far too giggly and “I’m so in love” at times, but cool and intellectual at other times. I understand that she got played because she fell in love, but she could play it a little more mature. Also, and I know this is petty, but I was distracted by her hair and makeup – far too polished and “I have a makeup artist” to be believable in the role.

    The writing is pretty good. But there are some plausibility gaps that irritate me. The guy from “Numb3rs” is wasted here, I wanted to like him more. And the woman who plays Mireille’s best friend and partner – meh. No girl chemistry.

    Then the sidekick roles … those are very generic and by the numbers. Derivative of all the latest cop shows (the CSI Franchise, NCIS, etc) where you have the hacker girl geek, and the smart serious guy (who you know is going to fall for hacker girl).

    Meh. Not great, not awful.

    You already know they’re not going to catch Christopher / Mr. X any time soon. Yet the two main leads are going to have to meet again because they supposedly have this hot chemistry that we’ll want to watch. So they’re going to have to come up with some pretty implausible plots to make that happen. And the series will drag on and on with bizarre side plots being threaded in. Basically like all of Shonda Rhimes’s work.

    I’m just – not a fan of this style of TV drama.

    • ? says:

      Don’t know Peter Krause? Is this your first time turning on a television? Haha.

      • Marc says:

        The review on this site had me concerned, but ABC only made the plot available, and that does not tell us enough about a show with a serialized plot. The fact that it was predictable tells me nothing about where they are going with this and whether it will work or not. After its pilot, I thought that Studio 60 was the great. Six weeks later, not so much, with all those reworked leftover West Wing plots.

        How about a re-vote in three weeks?

  14. Hetty N says:

    Totally unimpressed. The music and split screens were very distracting. Not what you want in a Premier.
    I saw zero chemistry between the leads, and just found it boring.
    It’s hard to get invested in the con, so early. You just don’t care enough about the characters.

    Gave it a chance, maybe one more episode, but I doubt it.

  15. Steven says:

    This is just like White Collar!!!

  16. Jane says:

    I really liked Mireille Enos in The Killing but for some reason I really didn’t like her in this role. It seemed like she was trying to hard or something. The whole thing just felt forced and she looked like she was having a terrible time. Doubt I’ll be back.

    • I would like show if it did not have Mireille Enos in it. She is horrible. I cannot stand the way she talks or acts. Love Peter Krause. I can’t watch it after her horrible acting. Too bad, cause the show looks good.

  17. prada says:

    the really did a reboot of the pilot and the show itself, hoping to see a more powerful and strong presence from the leading lady, after all is Shondaland and TGIT, on the other hand it looks like Shonda hasn’t influence a lot in the show.

  18. connycon60 says:

    Hind sight is 20/20, seemed to be the theme, which made them all look dumber than they seemed to be.

    Christopher’s wistful looks after his exit gave him a charming quality that makes you hate to love him. This is often a good quality for a show.

    The question is, can this show have legs? How long can they chase after him and still make money? This shall be interesting to watch.

  19. Charlene says:

    Even though I love both leads I could not finish watching this show. It tries too hard to be cute. Won’t be watching.

  20. Denise says:

    I love the fact that Mr.X really does love her but is drawn into doing what he’s doing by others pressure, so that leads me to believe that there will Bryant twists coming up! I can’t wait to see what’s next maybe they’ll pair up against the real Bad guys after they have some more cat & mouse chase fun that is.

  21. Sheila says:

    The male lead was not magnetic. Not Thomas Crown handsome. However, it is probably good for a conman to look forgettable.

  22. MMD says:

    I’m in………………. at least to give it a second episode!

    As I said yesterday, it goes against everything that I believe in to watch a Shondaland show and after Michael Slezak’s review I was very hesitant to even give this a try even though I loved Mireille Enos in The Killing and Peter Krause in Six Feet Under. I asked for advice from you folks yesterday and was encouraged to at least give it a try. I’m glad I did.

    Peter and MzTeaze commented above that it was like White Collar and I totally agree. With everything going on in the world, the damn endless election south of the border plus being a news junkie, I’m ready for a nice fluffy show.

    I agree that the split screens are annoying and I wonder if it will have legs. I’m at least hopeful and it is a nice change from the cable, British and Netflix dramas that I usually watch.

    If I like next week’s episode I think this will, for me anyway, be a binge show rather than must see tv.

    Bottom line, I enjoyed it much more than I expected to my utter surprise. Thanks to all who encouraged me to give it a try yesterday.

  23. Tennisnsun says:

    I totally welcome the light heartedness of this show. After slogging through all the angst on Greys and Scandal every week it is a welcome relief. I almost never watched HTGAWM because it was just too dark. Three twistys in a row on one night? Not for me. The loud music was a big problem for me. At times all I could hear was the music. Looking forward to the next episode.

  24. cuius says:

    Guess somebody has been watching “The Thomas Crown Affair” – it’s 1968 again, folks

  25. Marina says:

    Seriously, somebody is a huge fan of “The Thomas Crown Affair.”

    Let me just go over how totally ridiculous so many of the scenes are.

    First, the handoff in the outdoor mall between the geek who has been paid to steal secrets from his company, and Mr. X.

    This is 2016 folks. You can pay somebody for stealing secrets for you by transferring money electronically. You don’t need to hand over a massive old style leather briefcase in a crowded public place. What did they pay him with – $1 bills?

    And if you want to be covert, you don’t give the briefcase to a 7 year old kid in a uniform on a school field trip. How the freak does that even make sense? Did they hack into Catholic schools’ computers until they found a school that was going on a field trip that day, then contact the kid somehow? Or did they leave it until the last minute and say “Hey, let’s give this huge briefcase to a kid to give to the guy. Nobody will notice THAT! Not the other kids on the field trip with him – because we all know kids aren’t CURIOUS and they don’t TALK, right? Or maybe the teachers/nuns who would have been chaperoning the kids. “Stuart, where did you get that briefcase?” IT MAKES NO SENSE.

    And then Christopher / Mr. X has to change his clothes in the middle of this? And he takes off what is probably a very expensive jacket and dumps it on top of a garbage can in a crowded outdoor place and that is not going to draw attention to him?

    Not to mention he then walks right past the woman who has been sleeping with him for the past few months, who is there scanning for Mr. X …. and if she had seen him from the back wearing a tight t-shirt she wouldn’t have RECOGNIZED him?

    Sure, we’re playing up the angle that he’s a rogue who likes to live dangerously so he can’t resist. But there was no need for him to be there in the first place (in fact there’s no need for a public payoff at all so there’s no need for this SCENE) … and if he’s a disciplined experienced con man pulling off a job worth millions, why would he risk her seeing him?

    OK, I could go on and on about this stupid scene but let’s move on.

    The FBI agent. Who just shows up at their office. With no explanation as to how he knew they had any connection to Mr. X. And this firm of highly tech-savvy PIs who refuse to give him any information about their clients … he somehow knows that Mr. X. has stolen $5 million from two of their clients. How does he even know who their clients ARE let alone how much has been stolen?

    And by the way, $5 million is chump change for a company that can afford to hire high priced PIs whose office rent must be $50,000 a month judging by the swanky digs. And where ARE these clients who have been robbed? They don’t seem to know or care.

    And let’s move on to the third con where he’s stealing from yet another client at a swanky affair.

    They know he’s going to be there, they know he’s going to con their client, yet apparently the Mireille character has time to go full glam with hair, makeup, evening gown, and real caterpillars on her eyes (anybody else bothered by those massive fake eyelashes?) yet they don’t have ANY security presence at the event when it starts, they don’t warn the client (hello? don’t they have smart phones? email?), and they show up a half hour late when he has already been conned.

    And even if this Mr. X is fooling the guy into thinking he’s some tech god/genius, what inventor of a billion dollar pocket-sized water desalinization disk, carries around the specs on a thumb drive in his pocket?

    This show is just DUMB. DUMB. DUMB.

    • Abbie says:

      What does it say, if you can’t remember a single characters name? Should I worry about early onset dementia, or was I just non interested?

      I won’t comment on the many dumb scenes; you said it much better than I would.

      For me, the bigger problem; I couldn’t get into either of the leads. Neither seemed like a good fit for their role, and they totally lacked chemistry!

      I won’t watch again.

  26. what is the name of the painting that was stolen sad lady and who is the painter

  27. Oindrila says:

    Refreshingly good! Definitely looking forward to the next episodes.

  28. kristinaallenvacations says:

    Personally I think this is much better than any of Shonda’s other shows so far (although of course it’s just the pilot). I don’t need the “twists” thrown in just for shock value; just good writing and a solid plot. This has both so far. Really like the actors and the chemistry between the two leads.

  29. Megs says:

    Never watched The Killing, so maybe it was the Shonda-esque banter between characters, but Enos kept reminding me of Grey’s Meredith with her low, husky voice and aversion to relationships. I’d rather the main character of this show feel more unique and less like a clone.

  30. Marina says:

    I think Mireille Enos is absolutely gorgeous in a “Girl with the Pearl Earring” kind of classical way … she looks better with less makeup on, and not glammed up. And with her face in repose, not smiling or laughing.

    Because one thing about her is that when she smiles or laughs? All the magic goes away. She looks ordinary.

    Funny, that happens with Keira Knightley too. She’s beautiful and mysterious looking but she becomes really weird looking when she smiles, especially if she shows teeth.

  31. Tony says:

    The casting is strange. The female leads are lackluster. And Krause is miscast. Why didn’t they keep Damon Dayoub in his role? He was a much better choice for the role. Subtly stylish and sophisticated, but nothing to compel me to keep me watching.

  32. Marilyn says:

    Acting seemed subpar with some of the characters….but enjoyed it for the most part.

  33. Gospini says:

    Her hair is red. His is a not-uncommon blond/brown. So, no, it doesn’t distract me a bit because the colors are not that similar to my eyes.

  34. Bonnie says:

    The Thomas Crown Affair but not as hot…I’ll stick around for a second epi but Enos looked stiff, like she was worried about messing up her hair.

  35. Jennie says:

    Like many other pilots, I wasn’t riveted, but I did really tap into the emotions of the characters. I need to actually care about characters to really get into a show. I think there is so much to explore, and Shonda will make sure we get many surprises along the way. I love the glossy setting of this show, we have enough dark gritty dramas, if that’s your thing.

  36. LRB047 says:

    Not a big fan, but I’ll give it one more chance next week. It didn’t hold my attention like Grey’s Anatomy or How to Get Away with Murder.

  37. Pete Plaia says:

    I thought it was very good.I think it will get better and better as it goes along.

  38. Conniee says:

    Thought it was great. Both of the main actors were fantastic. They captured your attention and just pulled you in. Would love for this show to stay, I would certainly be a loyal fan.

  39. Francesca Muir says:

    I was disappointed in Peter Krause’s acting…rather boring…however, love Mireille!!!
    will keep watching…hoping it gets better…this is definitely NOT THE THOMAS CROWN AFFAIR!!!

  40. Sheila Foules says:

    Freshly brighly unrealisticly possible in a world I’d love to play in.

  41. Jan says:

    Where can I find white wedding gown in 1st episode? Loved it!

  42. Helen Wright Graves says:

    I think Shonda is absolutely brilliant! I read where The Catch falls short of HTGAWM but I don’t agree! Both of the caracters are so enigmatic. The male lead has such an inner struggle with his love for the leading lady and she has yet to deal with the betrsyal and love she feels for him. No comparison to the other (HTGAWM). They both stand on their own merrit. Brava!

  43. DAL says:

    I wanted to thank the woman below who IDed Maria Kreyn as the artist who painted ALONE TOGETHER. So apropos — given the plot of the first episode!

    The show reminds me of Hitchcock’s To Catch a Thief and other stylized capers of that ilk. Also brings to mind The Italian Job. Looking forward to the twist that’s a-coming. Could it be that our Con is really undercover in a bid to catch the BENEFACTOR? Time will tell.

  44. says:

    I can hardly wait to see next episode. Great acting and Peter Krause is Super Sexy!

  45. I didn’t like the first one, nor the female lead. Second episode, I’m hooked and I think she is awesome. She has finally gotten rid of those spider eye lashes and looks more natural so I really get it. I just don’t know how they can keep up the basis of the series,but I’m willing to give it a try.

  46. Jennifer says:

    I’m already hooked on this show. I love the way you have multiple story lines going on in the first 3 episodes. I hope though in the end Alice and “Christopher” or “Ben” or whatever name he is using get together. Please keep this show around

  47. Jennifer says:

    I’m already hooked on this show. I have it set up as a series recording so that I don’t miss anything. I just hope that in the end that Alice and “Christopher” or “Ben” or whatever name he is using now get back together. I love the way the show has multiple story lines going on and it keeps me guessing on who is going to Catch who first. Keep it up and again I love this show already.

  48. Jennifer says:

    I love this show. The chemistry between the entire staff is great but not to mention the chemistry between Alice and Christopher is awesome. I love the way it shows multiple story lines but keeps on track with the two main characters as well. I love the way Mireille smiles when she talks and it’s so very friendly. Peter is such a cutie pie and when he looks at Mireille’s character and tells her he loves her and it was real. I almost think they are a real life couple. Love it, please don’t do away with it. Keep this show on for years please.

  49. sfbGrace says:

    Love the love story. Great jewels and clothing. Beautiful stars. And not dark and heavy just before going to bed. Also love mixture of English and American characters. Glad you are back for another season.