Remember the Batman TV series with Adam West? That silly show worked because while all of the villains played their parts over-the-top, West always played his part straight and with the utmost seriousness. It was fun and has rarely has that format been duplicated.
I bring all this up because the script from NBC’s new thriller of a show, Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt for the Bone Collector, feels like it was inspired from the old comic book show. It’s hilariously bad without meaning to. Maybe there is a good show in here somewhere, but they would have to start over from scratch to find it.
Why NBC thought that this would make for a good show is a bigger mystery than any of the cases featured in the series. Granted, I’ve only seen the pilot episode, but I don’t expect things to get much better and the fact that the network is choosing to air the show on Fridays at 10 p.m. suggests that they don’t really intend on it doing well either.
This new show is inspired by Jeffrey Deaver’s best-selling novel from 1997 simply titled, The Bone Collector. This isn’t the first time that the story has been brought to film. In 1999, Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie starred in a movie the despite the fact that it did well with box office sales, it was panned by critics.
The new show opens with Lincoln Rhyme (Russell Hornsby), a NYPD detective who goes on a chase to save a kidnapped victim with hopes of capturing a serial killer known as “The Bone Collector” in a wharehouse while ignoring the call from his superior to wait for back up. It’s an arogant move and causes Lincoln to fall into a trap that leaves him paralyzed and the bad guy on the run.
Now, three years later, a new elaborate murder seems to point to the Bone Collector’s return to form. When young officer Amelia Sachs (Arielle Kebbel) finds something suspicious near the found body in a train tunnel, she is brought in to work with Rhyme on this new hunt. How is this possible? Amelia is fitted with some kind of body suit that is fitted with various cameras so Amelia can go on the run while Lincoln barks orders from his bedroom.
Lincoln is not an easy man to work with. He’s an arrogant jerk who throws out random facts that nobody would know. His regular team of computer geeks don’t enjoy working with him and for good reason. He is seen by others as a genius and he compares himself to Sherlock Holmes. The show even tries to copy some of the nifty graphics shown in the BBC Sherlock series. But none of this works. The writing for The Bone Collector really bad. Lincoln might as well be using his Bat Computer to figure out the Riddler’s clues.
While they don’t know who the killer is, we do. He’s played by Brian O’Byrne. A sauve man who one moment is happily entaining dinner guests in his home one moment and then that smile goes away when he enters his basement and we see his latest victim being tortured. The only thing missing is the villian mustache.
Will the victim get away? Will The Bone Collector get caught? Tune in next time, same bat time, same bat channel.
Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt for the Bone Collector airs Friday night at 8 p.m. (stay away kids!) and repeats Saturday night at 10 p.m.
(Featured photo: Claire (Roslyn Ruff) and Lincoln Rhyme (Russell Hornsby (Zach Dilgard/NBC)
I write about pop culture, arts and entertainment in the greater Seattle area.