25 January 2010 | Bif
If you are a fan of the buddy cop genre (if not, start with French Connection and work forwards), you'll know the basic rules:
1 - One 'straight' cop, one 'rogue' cop
2 - The two have a love/hate relationship, although deep down, it's love
3 - The pair learn about themselves and each other while solving wacky crimes
4 - Hilarity ensues
Since the genre itself starts off very close to satire, it's easy for a show to devolve into parody and idiocy - remember when David Addison turned into a freaking frog on Moonlighting? Luckily, White Collar hasn't gone in that direction.
In fact, it is funny, clever, well written, the cast is great, and they have obviously made a clear choice to focus on character relationships and not to obsess over getting all the real-life details exactingly accurate.
If you want heavy, serious drama you should watch The Wire; if you want silly comedy, watch Chuck; but if you want something smart and funny, but light, try White Collar. You can think of it as Burn Notice's older, more mature, brother.
(For the record, I like and enjoy every show mentioned in this review - except for maybe that frog episode.)