Monday, July 08, 2013

NBC's "Crossing Lines", shown first at European TV festival; Is this just Interpol?

NBC has picked up another suspense series, “Crossing Lines”, by Ed Benero and Rola Bauer, under somewhat unusual circumstances.  It had been test marketed at a festival in Monte Carlo, a kind of offshoot of Cannes. It was also broadcast in Italy on a public channel first.

The series involves a special police unit in Europe (the “ICC”) that tracks down serial criminals, and amounts to a combination NSA and FBI in American terms.  How is this more than Interpol?

William Fichtner plays Carl Hickman, a former NYPD police officer who was injured on the job and whose life deteriorated into drug addiction as he wound up in the Netherlands working on menial jobs.  He gets recruited by the ICC in the Pilot (June 23).
Other characters are Sebastian (Tom Wlaschiha), Kathrin (Florentine Lehme) , Tommy (Richard Flood), Eva (Gabriella Pession) and Michel (veteran actor Donald Sutherland, from the 1978 "Body Snatchers").
The June 30 episode, “The Terminator”, involved the use of polonium, which has actually been used in rare cases in spy circles. 

Last night, July 7, the third episode was “Long-Haul Predators”.   This is a truly bizarre idea.  A mechanic goes after families with children by disabling their vehicles so the families will fight, and then kidnaps the children.  Katrin offers her own son to act in a sting, where Tom and Eva play the “parents”.  Is this a social commentary on the desire for parenthood, when Europe is having low birth rates? 

NBC’s site for the series is here. The networks are going way afield to look for “breakout” concepts that will hold an audience’s attention. 

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