Ah, that age old question: what’s in the bag? Follow that up with the equally longstanding TV series question of “what’s the best way to get people hooked into a new show” and you have the first episode of Blindspot, the stylish new detective thriller.
Sky Living, 9.00pm, Tuesday 24th November
When a big old duffel bag just appears in Times Square with “Call the FBI” printed on it, you know someone means business. So the bomb squad are called in, but when the bag flinches with life, and a beautiful, mysterious, tattooed woman emerges, you just have to be thankful that the bomb squad’s first reaction wasn’t to blow the thing up.
Jump to “Rural Kentucky” and an FBI task force are kicking the door down on a hostage situation that looks like it’s threatening to go all Silence of the Lambs on it. Out of this we meet Agent Weller (Sullivan Stapleton) who is airlifted back to NYC to get involved with the rather unusual case of lost luggage.
He’s been called in thanks to the invitation on Jane Doe’s body; his name is quite prominently tattooed on her back. Though he claims to not know who she is, Jane can’t exactly corroborate the story, saying that her memory has been completely wiped. Science-y jargon aside, the team set about unraveling the mystery of who she really is.
With the aid of some cool visuals, the rather standard police procedural stuff is just that; by the book. As they look into her mystery, dipping in and out of the “this week the tattoos tell us…” set up that will hopefully not get too old too quick. But at least Jaimie Alexander is a sympathetic, likable heroine, just looking for the answer of who she is. It’s good to see her outside of the Thor universe, with this show feeling more like a showcase for her than anything else.
Things get interesting when the seemingly helpless Jane Doe has memories triggered by a particular tattoo; the Chinese symbols behind her ear leading to the discovery that she is multi-lingual, as well as a well-trained ass kicking machine. She’s certainly full of surprises, which hopefully the show can use to its full effect as we go along.
This first episode dips in and out of high-paced energy levels throughout its second half, with Jane Doe’s newly rediscovered skills leading the team on the hunt of a bomb maker. The fights – and style in general – are certainly eye-catching, a slight break from the norm in that respect. But then we land back in the standard detective procedural stuff without too many major advancements.
Looking past that – it is only still episode one after all – the show has enough of a punch behind it to hint at great things to come; let’s just hope it finds its feet. A strong concept, as well as a nearly endless list of possibilities for future surprises are both very appealing qualities. And the big action stuff adds serious flash and (sometimes literal) bang to it. You get the feeling that this series would be better binged than waited for, but there’s certainly enough there to feel an itch for Blindspot.