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  • While I read negative reviews of this show quite often, I found myself wondering if this show would be worth my time. I mean, from the previews before it started I would ask myself "How can they do this as a series?" A mini-series? Sure, but a TV Series with maybe multiple seasons??? That point aside, I decided to drop my skepticism and give this show a chance, (I mean ANYTHING beats another mind-numbing, brain cell killing, coma inducing Reality Show!!!)

    It took me a few episodes to realize this isn't just a show about Hostages or Assassinating Presidents; there are serious character layers and sub-plots that got me hooked each week and wondering what the heck might happen next!

    The actors are pretty stellar, the characters are well thought out and you find yourself flipping your opinions about who they are and what drives them. Sometimes I feel pretty sympathetic to the "Bad Guys" while having no sympathy for the family, others I am torn, sometimes I like them all. The thing that I find more intriguing about this show is the ruthlessness of the "Real" Players (Spoiler) (they aren't the Hostage takers!) So as the show progresses I can see the logic of it being a series. I could actually visualize a 2nd Season; because whether they succeed in the assassination or not, all of their lives will be at stake!

    Don't underestimate this show. It has some very top notch serial drama going on (Think "Who Shot J.R.?", cliffhangers but every week. I find it's better to DVR it and watch a bunch in one setting because I am impatient and hate to be left hanging. There is only 2 episodes left and it doesn't look like it will be renewed for a second season, so get caught up on the official website before January 6 when the show returns for its last 2 episodes. This is also the best way to get into the show without getting frustrated by the numerous cliffhangers.

    I want to champion this show, not because it's an underdog...but because it really is good drama, good acting and a dang good show overall!!!!
  • TV shows are like boxing matches, you have the main events like Breaking Bad, Boardwalk, Game of Thrones. Then you have the undercard or as I say fillers, and this is definitely on the filler list.

    I'm watching this in the UK and like this show while there's basically naff all on currently. I'm really not sure the reviewer's have been watching the same show but it's all about opinions and there's counts just like mine does I hope.

    It may well be a one season wonder in the end, but currently there's a lot going on like political gamesmanship, murder, blackmail and a reasonable storyline to keep me interested. As said I do class this as an undercard type show, but it's watchable and doesn't deserve the reviews it's been getting.

    Personally a lot of shows that I've watched in this class have been canned by the TV powers that be. Which begs the question, do my great American cousins actually know what there watching sometimes, when shows like Grey's (bailed after Season 5, The Mentalist bailed and a few more I dare not mention) are still out there going strong.

    I love the US drama, best TV on the planet. They're very few UK shows of equal and we have a tradition in the UK of only having 6 episode seasons, less if you think of Luther.

    This is a new golden age with so many great US shows, 3 I've already mentioned, alas BB is no more (nothing touches that). I'm enjoying Hostages, just like The Blacklist, Revolution, Under The Dome and Continuum. All enjoyable filler shows to watch while the main events are on break.

    If you've given up on this, I'd encourage you to go back to it while there's nothing on.
  • SnoopyStyle22 October 2013
    Warning: Spoilers
    After watching episode 5, I have no choice but to quit. I didn't want to do it, but the writers have forced my hand. This is an intricate thriller. Once the characters become idiots, there is no recovering from that.

    Duncan Carlisle (Dylan McDermott) is a rogue FBI in a vast conspiracy to assassinate the President. With his shady ragtag team, he kidnaps Dr. Ellen Sanders (Toni Collette) and her family to blackmail her into murdering the President during his surgery.

    Whenever there is a vast and hidden conspiracy, the writing has to be impeccable. Any plot holes or logic problems will shine a glaring neon sign on the show's problems. Seeing how the creator Rotem Shamir has already made the same show in Israel which I have not seen. I would hope that the writers have everything squared away and tight. Despite some clunky moves in the first 4 episodes, I was willing to go along with it. After all, they have Toni Collette, Dylan McDermott, and Tate Donovan. They're terrific experienced actors.

    It never made sense that the kidnappers would allow both of the kids walk out of the house. Even if they don't want the secret service to be suspicious, one sick kid at home can't be out of the ordinary. Have one be home sick for a couple of days, then the other. Then kidnappers would have at least one kid at home easily for one whole week. The kids are the ultimate anchors against the parents. No way they let them walk off even with the most powerful tracking devices.

    Then episode 5 went off the tracks. When Dr. Sanders was at the bus station, why wouldn't she go talk to her kids? It probably takes as much time to do that than to drop off the package at the info desk. Why? Because if she actually did that, then something even stupider couldn't have happened.

    Why would Jake call home? What kind of idiot is he? Is he 5? How big of a pussy is he? The corollary of this-show-can't-be-stupid is that the characters can't be idiots. And calling home???? Where the kidnappers are???? WHY????? While I understand why the writers would want the family together at the house, there were much better ways to achieve that. Sandrine could have easily caught them at the bus stop. They could have made a really fun exciting action sequence out of it. She could easily tranq or tased them. Stuff them in the trunk. It's not that hard.
  • At first I thought it was poor acting and an unlikely story, but I'm hooked by watching the DVR'd episodes. I love the twists and turns of each character's loyalties and possible evils....the bad guys are beginning to look like the good guys and even the family members are changing their weaknesses and character. Anticipating a very surprise ending! Looking forward to the next episode!! I am also recording "Blacklist" which comes on at the same time and day. I am also hooked on that show. I don't usually watch TV intensely but my husband has been gone a lot in the past 3 months so I have indulged in these serial shows. I thought I enjoyed Blacklist more than Hostages, but now I think they are both equally exciting and full of suspense. Both shows make the viewer leery about what actually goes on in the higher levels of the government! Who can you trust??!!
  • Mustang922 October 2013
    Warning: Spoilers
    I gave this show two tries, the pilot episode and the following one. The pilot wasn't the worst pilot I've ever seen, but at the very end of it, how could the doctor (Toni Collette) legitimately, possibly think that by not going through will killing the President during surgery, this would save her & her family from being killed? WHAT possible logic could she have at that point?

    She returns back home, what would have stopped the assassins/crew from just wiping them all out??

    There is no reason. Not a logical one. This plot, this show is SUPER CONTRIVED. I hate things that are super contrived. Allow logic to enter your brain, and the whole house (show) collapses.

    Then it gets worse in the next episode. Now the whole assassination plot must be delayed, and magically the lead assassin (Dylan McDermott) is so well prepared, that he had with him GPS devices that can be implanted in each family member, to watch/track them for the next 2 weeks (until the president perhaps goes into surgery again). REALLY? You just happened to have planned for this contingency? LOL. I call bull crap. Particularly when his crew only expected this to be a 24-hour job and it would be over. And a crew that not one of them knew they'd be involved in a plot that would kill the president?

    I'm sorry, but if you take criminals who have some semblance of a brain (as some of his crew displays), and all you tell them is they're committing blackmail for 24 hours and the job is over... yet then they learn it's NOT blackmail but murder, and not just a murder but murder of the highest order -- you're telling me the WHOLE CREW is going to stick around and see this out?? NO FRICKIN' WAY.

    Bottom line, the writing is so bad and so trite, that various characters' motivations make NO sense, yet we the audience are supposed to believe them, because it's written that way. Who the hell are these writers? And why has Bruckheimer sunk so low, that he's producing (or his name is on) such a crap show? That's what I'd like to know.

    This show will not last long.
  • billt61a24 September 2013
    Yet another TV show with a premise that's reasonable for a 2 hour movie but can't possibly work for an entire season.

    The dialog is cliché. You know what's going to happen before it happens because you've seen it a thousand times before. If you watch TV to have background noise while performing household chores, doing your taxes, etc., it's perfect, you don't have to think at all.

    Sadly, after "United States of Tara" and this... thing..., I'm removing Toni Collette from my list actors who's presence makes something watchable. I really wonder why they gave this show the green light, it has nothing going for it.
  • I have seen a couple of episodes and I must say my expectations were high. After Breaking Bad and Southland, a trilling drama is really missing on TV. Jerry Bruckheimer is a great producer. This would have been a great series if... it wouldn't revolve about hostage situation, that is normally a short-lived situation that can cover the length of a movie, but hardly a season. This inevitably leads to a series with excessive prolonging and disappointments. Most importantly, you can't really produce a family-friendly hostage drama. This is as dramatic as kissing through glass is intimate. It's impossible to maintain the thrill factor if no one gets hurt in an extortion drama, even if hostages do not follow orders from their captors. Let's compare it to Breaking Bad - except for a few main characters, everyone could any moment become a collateral there. Here, the characters are treated as "babe" piggy that no one expects to die. I must say though, the character, dialogs and events are interesting, well written, the flick is executed very well and acting is superb.
  • OMG, I can't take it anymore... I've tried to watch as much as I can this is completely stupid. I even register to this site to write how awful it is... Toni Collette is terrible, always the same look in her eyes, family members are stupid, if she was a surgeon, I would not want her to operate on me!!! great expectations bring high deception... Please, tell me that no one is really loving this show. Not sure if it is the wrong casting but the writing was probably done by a 10 years old. How can Jerry Bruckheimer can be involve in that project. Anyhow, that was my first review and if you want my advice:

    Don't lose time watching this!
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I had high hopes for this series: A one season and out action thriller with a unique premise. But like a fireworks display that starts out loud, bright and dazzling, its has fizzled away to nothing. I like Tony Collette, but she has been terribly miscast here. She is wooden and too unemotional. Although you would expect a topnotch surgeon to be somewhat less emotional than most, her portrayal is a major distraction to the premise of the show. She seems to be taking that fact that her whole family has been taken "hostage" in stride. Since more than one family member has been taken hostage, why would the "terrorists" not sacrifice one to keep her in line (as they attempted with the nurse).

    The final straw was when, after the children successfully made it to a bus station, where the doctor observed her children waiting for her (as part of an elaborate plan formulated by the doctor and her husband to get the children and her to safety), the good doctor was contacted via her cell phone and watched as the terrorists shot her husband, who, as part of the plan, voluntarily ran interference to help the others escape. Instead of gathering her children and leaving as planned, she left them a note to take the bus without her and she returned home to help her husband. Did she think they would give him a spa vacation for helping his family escape? Why would she ruin everything her husband went through to help his family and reintroduce them all to the danger they so desperately were trying to flee from? How can such a respected surgeon act in such a foolish, irresponsible, and stupid manner? This was definitely foreshadow of things to come. The family attempting to escape, and stupid decisions preventing that from happening (because, after all, the show is over if the family gets away). I was hoping the action and suspense of the hostage situation would unravel differently.

    And lastly, the father is having an affair, the teenage son is a drug dealer, and the teenage daughter has become pregnant by her loser boyfriend. Are we suppose to connect with these hostage characters?
  • darrengabbe16 October 2013
    Warning: Spoilers
    After watching the first 4 episodes of this farce I can only say that it was a waste of 4hrs of my life. I kept hoping for it to get better but the plot doesn't unfold, the characters are impossible to feel anything for and the script is so unbelievable that it's laughable. I'm sure that some network execs got together and said "Hey! Let's see how long we can string people along watching this crap" sort of like when you get a Troll on the phone phishing for personal info and you see how long you can have them sitting on hold while you "LOOK FOR YOUR CREDIT-CARD". (48 mins was my best so far) Anyway, avoid this convoluted load of cats vomit that the dog crapped on!
  • saintmaryjane15 October 2013
    Warning: Spoilers
    I agree w/all the long negative reviews of this terrible new show. Again, another horrible actress in the lead (I am thinking of Scandal & K. Washington). Toni Collette has a skeletal face & the haircut of a junior high schooler. WHY do woman of this age think long hair & bangs look good? They don't. Toni C. has two expressions at best & both are completely unattractive. She is NOT believable at all, certainly NOT a surgeon. No real doctor would dress this way, have all that hair hanging around & behave like such an idiot. All that lip pouting. Yikes. The family is "meh" so who really cares what happens to any of them. The unrealistic teenagers, the cheating husband...ugh. I would like to say I thought D. McDermott was OK but really he's not either. He looks constipated at best & again so leaden. Is he supposed to be evil, sexy, conflicted, disturbed or what? Can't tell. There is no expression. He seems embarrassed to even be there as well he should be. Can't CBS come up w/something better than this drivel? Toni C. & Dylan M. should fire their agents for putting them in this nonsense.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This show is truly the best comedy of the year. The writing is so laugh-out-loud funny, my household has turned guessing what ridiculous plot twist will occur next into a game. Each week, the action becomes more embarrassing, the dialog more mundane, and the plot more unbelievable; from the Dr. arriving just in time to prevent her husband from injecting the lead kidnapper with his own poison, to the Dr. and her husband attempting to kill the lead kidnapper thinking that this will end their family's terror (even though they are aware that at least a dozen other people are in on this). The acting is horrible (especially the kids and Toni Collett). There is no suspense left in the plot because, after five episodes, each family character has been revealed to be incredibly stupid, yet the writers continue to move them through ever more stupid scenarios.

    On the bright side, the show is so bad that it does provide some comedy relief. During the times when you don't want to strangle the cast members due to their stupidity, you have to laugh at how stupid their world must be that they could achieve such lofty positions in life.
  • I have been watching this show for three weeks now, And every episode i ask myself, Why? Why am i still watching this show.

    The plot of the show is that they want to assassinate the president of America, I have watched to many TV shows and movies to believe for one second that they will succeed.

    Three outcomes i predict.

    1)-The family will somehow escape the captors by the end of season one (Cliffhanger / end of series)

    2)-The captors will kill one of the family members (The dad most likely) By the end of the first season. And the series will end.

    3)-And most likely, The network will droop the show within the next four weeks.

    Any way you look at it, This show is doomed. Terrible idea for a series.
  • brucebunch9 October 2013
    Based on advance publicity and the hiring of the great Toni Colette, I thought Hostages would be one of my favorite shows. By the end of the first episode, the story was so stupid and improbable I knew I would never watch again. If the hostage takers are so omniscient and well- placed, what do they need the doctor Toni plays for? They had numerous chances to off the prexie. Why doesn't Toni show the prexie a note when they are alone saying: "Don't speak. People who want me to kill you are holding my family hostage." Etc. Etc. Maybe if the American networks had limited three or four episode series like the BBC this would have worked. But then they would have had to hire more talented scriptwriters than those who crafted this unbelievable series. Based on advance publicity, Blacklist sounded pretty hokey. But it's actually more believable and entertaining than the train wreck the Hostage writers created.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Even before our story takes hold, Toni Collette, who plays a surgeon assigned to operating on the president of the United States looks troubled. This is even before the story comes out where she and her family are taken hostage and she is ordered to kill the president, otherwise the family will be wiped out.

    In the interim, we're finding out that her husband has been unfaithful and that their son and daughters have some issues by themselves.

    This becomes another story where no one basically can be trusted and it looks as though as Toni will have to bide her time. It also appears that a rapprochement among the family shall have to take place.
  • Yes,it reminds me of 24. Do you remember Jack Bauer saying: "Right now, terrorists are plotting to assassinate a presidential candidate. My wife and daughter have been targeted. And people that I work with, may be involved in both. I'm federal agent Jack Bauer, and today is the longest day of my life". For Dr. Ellen Sanders this will be the longest two weeks of her life and for her family too. Slow start but getting better and better. Of course the premise can work for an entire season despite what others might say. Every character is interesting and Toni Collette and Dylan McDermott are great. Dr. Sanders is playing Chess with terrorists, I look forward to it.
  • This show keep viewers at the edge of their seats. Each episode has new twists and turns giving you the sense that everyone is a hostage, including the viewer. Ellen and Duncan have electric energy between them. The supporting cast provides additional story lines that keep you guessing. Dylan and Toni are by far the highlight of this new show. Unfortunately CBS needs to move this show to another night perhaps to the lead into CSI. The shows potential for greater ratings is evident, however, up against the "Blacklist" was indication the show needs to move to another night... Poor placement in the line up. It will be disappointing if the show does not get picked up for another season. Great cast and production team at Warner Bros. Better that Lost, better than the Blacklist and better than any other new show this season. Keep the show alive but move it so viewers can find the drama and become one of the HOSTAGES.
  • mrstarango19 November 2013
    Not sure why everyone is being such a harsh critic. This show is great and keeps me on the edge of my seat and salivating over the juicy drama! I started watching the second episode first and was immediately so hooked that I went back to watch the first and caught up to the current episode (at that time it was about 6). I do question the writers' ability to make the plot stretch into more than one season, but I guess we will see soon, as there are only a couple more episodes left in the season. I will be watching either way! I loved Toni Collette in United States of Tara - I think she is a great actress. Dylan McDermott isn't hard on the eyes either.
  • tlmomca26 October 2013
    You have the most dreadful writers for this show. The writing is clichéd and hackneyed and I find the most enjoyment I have when trying to watch this show, picking apart the plot and anticipating what will happen next. The worst thing about it is - I am almost always correct and it is always the most foreseeable plot twist imaginable.

    I am actually willing to watch multiple episodes of a new show to give it enough time to grow on me. This one has just lost me. It has good actors and it has lost me.

    Do the world a favor and fire the writing staff now and perhaps a new set can save this show.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I found the show to be very slow moving, although I did only get through one and a half episodes before I couldn't take anymore.

    The idea was interesting, but I quickly got the impression it would be countless episodes of reasons why things just don't quite work out resulting in the hostage situation dragging on far longer than I was willing to endure watching.

    I also didn't really like how the characters interacted and found some of the plot holes very frustrating. By the time I stopped watching I thought even if there was a monumental plot twist (which seemed like a big if), I simply wouldn't care enough to find out what it was.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Jerry Bruckheimer, Dylan McDermott and Toni Collette, should be a no- brainer, right? Yeah, not so much. Not from what I have seen thus far anyway. The premise of Hostages is this. An oncology surgeon Dr. Ellen Sanders, Toni Collette, has taken on the responsibility of operating on the President of the United States. Media circus and pressure from the management of the hospital Dr. Sanders remains confident and strong. She goes home the evening before the surgery and is taken hostage by a group of terrorists who tell her she will kill the president or her family will die. Interesting box to be thrown into eh? The writers have covered all of the bases, there are no holes in the trap. They have thought of everything to effectively tie the hands of the doctor and her family. There is no 'easy way out' everyone is ignoring because it is TV land. I will say the thoroughness of the story is impressive. They definitely did their research knowing one of the first things people like me will look for are holes. Side stories revealing characterizations is key. All of the secrets the family is keeping from each other as well as a sub-plot of Dylan McDermott's character not actually being terrorist he is trying to portray. He is shown with his comatose wife, and adorable young daughter as well as being established as a top notch negotiator with the FBI. Subplots are good if we keep them simple. However, they can also give the watcher a headache trying to keep track of everything and how it fits. Here is the challenge. While the plot seems to be fraction-less,well developed and presented flawlessly, how do you keep the story moving forward with such a restrained expectation? The entire struggle is the conflict of will she do it, or won't she? This is a magnificent morale struggle plot for a movie, not a television show. The pilot as already delivered the first stall with a blood thinner that cancels the surgery for two weeks. Now what? They all hang out in the house for two weeks? They become one big happy family? We are bordering on the unbelievable. This is of course unless there is some huge plot reveal in episode two or three. The other challenge I am having is the hook. I really have no desire to watch the next episode as I didn't attach to any of the characters. To be completely honest the ONLY reason I am giving it a shot is Dylan McDermott. The guy is so talented, but has the unfortunate luck of not being able find a pilot that sticks. So overall I have my doubts about Hostages, could be a political thriller with a fluid movement of characters and subplots. Or it could be a huge, jarring, confusing mess.
  • sciacca112 November 2013
    Warning: Spoilers
    This far fetched fun TV melodrama keeps me on the edge of my seat. Even though the story-line is definitely in league with daytime soaps; the acting is excellent. I'm in for the long run. For the simple reason, I love a good thrilling drama. I cannot wait to see how the story is wrapped-up. Yes the script is incredibly contrived. Of course, right when Dr. Sanders (played effortlessly by Toni Collette) is about to get on the bus and escape -- oh no! A call from the evil, sexy, complicated, good looking kidnapper (played superbly by Dylan McDermott) to inform Dr. Sanders that he has her husband (Damages' solid actor Tate Donovan) and he is now in mortal danger. Of course she has to go save him. Therefore, Dr. Sanders does not get on the bus. Even though I was yelling 'get on the bus -- just get on the damn bus'.(Since her husband has been cheating on her for months). I love this kind of fun storytelling with good looking actors who know how to draw viewers into a far fetched complex story. I am a fan!
  • It started of fairly well but then completely veered off compass very fast. The show got over complicated, full of clichés, and one had the feeling that the writers did not know what to invent next in order to keep the show going. A pity, because this could have been much better but should have been much shorter (2-3 episode mini-series maximum), without all the unnecessary subplots and ridiculous twists that they made the show take as it went on.

    On a different note, contrary to the above critic, I think that Dylan McDermott was well cast and did quite a good job in his role. Toni Colette on the other hand, wasn't so convincing to me as a successful surgeon... All in all, decent escapist entertainment, nothing more.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This must be one of the worst screenplays ever. Bad acting, wrong facts, over done. Still struggling to see the end. The things happening at he hospital must be way wrong. If someone is being shot how can they walk around the next hour as if nothing happened. And more and more of these things.

    The acting is even worse, and yes i did create an account just to write a review of this bad, bad show. Talked about it with my wife who is also watching this show. The plot is too predictable, you just know what is going to happen next..

    Hope you will have more fun with this show than i did. 3 more episodes and i am done. I have to pad myself on the shoulder if make it to the end.
  • bgalbertazzi21 January 2014
    Warning: Spoilers
    This was a mangled mess of a story.

    The situations were ridiculous.

    What a waste of Toni Collette's talent.

    How many writers were there. They should have gotten together and worked on the same series.

    There were so many plots, twists and turns it was chaos.

    Maybe it would have worked better if it wasn't all crammed into 12 episodes. There was enuf going on for several seasons.

    I like to say one good thing about a show, but sadly I can't think of anything,
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