Simon Baker Bakes and Guards

In Television on March 21, 2013 at 10:27 pm


Pretty awful title? Sure is! Do I really care? Nope. Does Simon Baker playing Nick Fallin look like he cares? Nope! He’s looking to the next child that needs his protectin’. And that child is one lucky mamajama.

In all seriousness, I found this show after buying a new television because I threw the old one out the window after attempting to watch “Scandal” and I was pleasantly surprised. I was looking for a mystery/drama show that wasn’t as long as all the BBC shows are and as wasn’t as predictable as “C.S.I.” or “Law and Order”. And this show is anything but that.

Simon Baker plays Nick Fallin, a Fallin angel is you will, who has to serve 1500 hours of community service at Child Legal Services for doing a ton of drugs. Fallin doesn’t flinch though and begins working alongside Alvin Masterson, played by Alan Rosenberg, and James Mooney, played by Charles Malik Whitfield, while also holding his corporationy job at Fallin and Associates which is run by his father Burton played by Dabney Coleman, who aged horribly and I could hardly recognize him as the Commodore for “Boardwalk Empire”.

The pilot begins with Fallin meeting his first client, a young boy who witnessed the killing of his mother by his father. After receiving this news, Fallin is visibly shaking, possibly alluding to something he may have witnessed in his childhood perhaps? I don’t know I’m only on episode 5. But Fallin looks into the case a bit more and finds that the father might not be responsible and his corporationy law office may be able to represent the boy in a potentila million dollar case. This becomes the back story throughout the season and the audience receives some updates on the case as it continues, meanwhile Fallin continues working with his clientele at Children Legal Services. Oh did I mention that this show takes place in Pittsburgh, a city that is on a pretty steady downwards trend from awesome steel producing capital? No? Well it is.

This allows the show to get a bit dark, drugs and race are brought up quite a lot, without getting too dark, imagine “The Wire” except on basic cable television. Now I know what you might be thinking? But “The Wire” was great and was even better with the cursing and the shooting and the boobs, but even without those, I truly believe that it would be a good show and I think “The Guardian” is a good example of that. It’s got a decent script, nothing mesmerizing about it, but it’s intelligent, throws a lot of jargon on you, and pushes you to keep up with it.

Simon Baker is also pretty good in this show, he hasn’t really flexed his acting muscles in any episodes I’ve seen yet, but I think he has potential. He’s got a decent script and a pretty good story line, he just needs to ride the emotional roller coaster a bit more.

Charles Malik Whitfield came out of nowhere, literally had no idea where or if I have seen this guy in any other show, and showed some serious acting mojo. He has a very good understanding of his character and appeared to truly embrace that story line of the boy from the hood who made it. He puts Fallin in his place and puts Fallin’s world into perspective. His character also intrigues me because I truly enjoy watching stories involving individuals who made it in order to help those who couldn’t. I like that story.

“The Guardian”, from the episodes I’ve seen, rarely has a happy ending. It would be completely unrealistic to expect a show about the legal system and foster care to have a happy ending every single episode, and this show definitely does not. I recently watched an episode where every single outcome for a child’s placement was bad. Literally, there was nothing that Fallin or anyone else could do to improve the life of this child. Should you be concerned that I like a show specifically for these reasons? Maybe, but not entirely.

“The Guardian” is on Netflix. Give it a watch if you want to catch something original for once. Oh yeah, just ignore the cheesy 90s music in the beginning.


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