- TV Series
Dr. Richard Kimble is framed for his wife's murder by a mysterious one-armed man. During sentencing Kimble escapes intending to catch the one-armed man and find out why he was framed. Follow... Read allDr. Richard Kimble is framed for his wife's murder by a mysterious one-armed man. During sentencing Kimble escapes intending to catch the one-armed man and find out why he was framed. Following in hot pursuit is Inspector Philip Gerard, who is intending to bring in Kimble alive. ... Read allDr. Richard Kimble is framed for his wife's murder by a mysterious one-armed man. During sentencing Kimble escapes intending to catch the one-armed man and find out why he was framed. Following in hot pursuit is Inspector Philip Gerard, who is intending to bring in Kimble alive. But Gerard and the one-armed man are not the only thing Kimble has to worry about. The fat... Read all
When I first heard of a theatrical version starring Harrison Ford (who played Han Solo, the only character at the time that I liked from "Star Wars"), I jumped to see Dr. Kimble and the One-Armed Man make the leap to the big screen. As if my excitement and expectation level wasn't high enough, I did cartwheels in my living room when I found out that the gorgeous Sela Ward was to play Helen Kimble and the great Tommy Lee Jones was to play the great U.S. Marshal Samuel Gerard. When I finally went to theatres to see the movie, was I disappointed? I'd say of course not but I'd be lying. Sure the film had the added bonuses of Joe Pantoliano, Andreas Katsulas (playing the bushy haired One-Armed Man, no less -- if you're a true fan of the original series you'll know why I mention the hair), and a cast of entertaining supporting characters. Add to all that a series of great action sequences and you've got a great movie. But there was still something missing. That something was all the subplots that appeared in every episode of the series (with the exception of the two-part series finale). I did understand, though, that this was due to the fact that all the subplots would have taken away from the movie by not focusing enough on the main plot (the search for the One-Armed Man). That and it'd make for a movie length that would rival even the longest of epics (not that I'd mind). Definitely something that would make mainstream audience members looking for some entertainment look at their watches hoping it would end or simply doze off hoping someone would wake them once the end credits began to role.
That was 1992.
Flash forward to the year 2000 and Dr. Richard Kimble is back on the run. This time the chase for the good doctor in search of his wife's one armed murderer is back on the small screen. This time Dr. Kimble is portrayed by Tim Daly (of the series "Wings" and the voice of the Man of Steel in "Superman: The Animated Series"), Helen Kimble by Kelly Rutherford (best known as Megan Lewis Mancini McBride in "Melrose Place") and Lt. Philip Gerard (nice touch by whoever chose to return the original name) is portrayed by Mykelti Williamson (sorry, I never heard of him before). This series chooses to take its basis from the movie rather than the original series. This is not surprising since most TV viewers these days are surprised to hear that there was actually a series before the movie. Is this bad? Not really since the movie added it's own twists and turns to the tale of Dr. Richard Kimble's search for his wife's killer. Also, it had the potential to merge the movie's approach with that of the original series. Was this accomplished? After seeing the pilot, I can honestly say this not so. This series tends to focus on over-the-top action sequences (an obvious attempt to attract those only watched the movie the bus/train wreck featured prominently in the film's trailer) and only marginally focusing on Kimble's interaction with the different people he meets (and often helps) along his way towards the One-Armed Man and as he hides from Gerard's pursuit. Sadder still is that all the character's are one-dimensional and end up being mere caricatures rather than the real people they were meant to be. Worse of all is the treatment of the Sam Gerard. He's impossible to like. True he's Kimble's pursuer but he was simply a man who took his job seriously, not some super prick that has a vendetta against Kimble for reason's that are too ridiculous to believe (yes, many cops can be driven by ego but there's always a motive for that ego -- that's not present here). Worse still, this only the first episode of the series and Kimble will already square off against the One-Armed Man in the next.
But there are other reasons to dislike this new rendition of such a classic series. For example, most of the dialogue is recycled from the movie and the plot of this series itself is only a slight rewrite of the movie. I wouldn't be surprised if Povasic (or something similar) makes an appearance as a random plot point later in the series.
In short, this is very bad news for old school "Fugitive" fans. But what can you expect from a television season that has premiered crap like "Dark Angel" (I didn't need to watch that one to know how idiotic it'd be)?
- Oct 6, 2000