25 October 2009 | Songmaker23
White Collar is Clever, Crisp, and Hugely Entertaining
Think of White Collar as a little bit "48 Hours" (the Eddie Murphy, Nick Nolte classic) and a little bit "Catch Me If You Can" (the DiCaprio & Hanks rollick). "Law & Order" this ain't. Call it "fun TV".
The premise: What do you do with an amazing criminal mind (white collar, of course) frittering away in a super-max prison, that he can apparently escape from at will? The answer soon comes when said genius criminal Neal Caffrey (Matt Bomer) offers to help the FBI agent who originally caught him solve a case that's been frustrating him for years. Agent Peter Burke (Tim DeKay) while wary, realizes this "may"...repeat "may" be a way to finally catch the bad guy.. White Collar is another USA "Characters welcome" offering, and it's a great one.
Tim DeKay is pitch perfect as the agent who lives his job. He has a kind of "Tom Hanks meets young Jack Lemmon" quality that is spot on for the tone of the show. He's written as real guy in a tough spot. He truly loves his wife, but tireless dedication to "the job" causes him to forget anniversaries, and regularly arrive home after his wife is long 'a bed. His wife Elizabeth (Tiffani Thiessen) often eats dinners alone... well, sort of.
Matt Bomer, soon to be a household name, vaults from his supporting role of Bryce on "Chuck" straight into a major lead role that fits him like a glove... like he was born to do this. Along with class A hunky good looks, Bomer also has a vulnerable quality that is quite touching. Ladies, he's Oooo so cute, slick, smart and gosh darn lovable, that your significant other may actually allow you to gaze... This show has something for everyone. The story line is not at all predictable. You want to watch how this might end.
Tiffani Thiessen is actually a lovely surprise, having matured nicely as an actress from her 90210 days. Amazing for a pilot, there is sweet gentle chemistry with her FBI hubby.
This FBI version of the "truly odd couple" takes straight off on a smart, well written, snappy crime-solving adventure. The dialog is zippy, and once the obligatory plot setup is laid down, the laughs come early and often. This too makes White Collar good family entertainment.
If the series follows the pilot's lead, there will be ZERO gratuitous violence, another reason to appreciate the show. Caffrey charms and disarms all creatures great and small, while using his near savant abilities to see what the FBI cannot. The lead characters are perfectly complementary. The casting is sublime. Even the score is hip, something that USA recently seems to have cornered the market on.
Personally I can't wait for the next installment of what promises to be a seriously entertaining and original show.