3 November 2004 | mystic80
Not bad, not great
It's inevitable that there will be comparisons to NBC's Las Vegas show with James Caan. In my opinion, Las Vegas is the superior one because it was there first. But what Las Vegas lacks and what Dr. Vegas gains is the cast. With the exception of James Caan's presence, all the actors on Las Vegas look like they stepped out of a Ralph Lauren ad. They're all very attractive females and males. But unfortunately, their acting talent doesn't match that of say, Dr. Vegas.
What's interesting about Dr. Vegas, which does feel like a Las Vegas clone, is the cast. Even when he's in bad projects, Joe Pantoliano always delivers his trademark schtick of being a great wiseass. Seriously, you can't beat someone like Pantoliano who adds a breath of fresh air to anything. Another thing is Tom Sizemore's in the show, which seems like a step back considering he's had success in films. Rob Lowe's a decent actor, but unfortunately his character, is just a little too bland.
While Las Vegas focuses on the security team of a casino, Dr. Vegas is a little more sporadic with only one character representing a certain department. Such as Rob Lowe's character represents medicine, Sizemore's character is security, and Joe Pantoliano is the big boss. Since it's a little more sporadic, it's a little hard to keep track of the characters and where they're going. What NBC's show has going for it, besides familiar guest stars, is it's got a unique visual style. That is, a music video style of film-making in the vein of Ocean's Eleven. It's a show that's about hip Las Vegas.
Dr. Vegas, of which I only viewed the pilot, is still trying to find it's feet (that is, if it ever gets back from "hiatus"). There's only a few characters to follow, but rest assured, the success of a show can guarantee more characters being brought in. But this show feels like a barebones operation that's still trying to get it's feet wet.
All in all, I would recommend Las Vegas to Dr. Vegas because Las Vegas is just a little more fun and perhaps, accurately captures the atmosphere of Sin City itself. However, what Las Vegas needs, is an actor like Joe Pantoliano to really stir things up.