The “Pilot” for The Cape, NBC’s new super-hero drama, is a mess. First, the basic set-up: A cop (David Lyons) is framed by a super-villain entrepreneur (James Frain) losing his job, life, and family (Jennifer Ferrin, Ryan Wynott). Disgraced, and believed dead, our hero takes up with the “Circus of Crime” (led by Keith David) who help him hone his skills to become a super-hero. With their help, and that of the mysterious
Oracle Orwell (Summer Glau), he plans to prove that one man can make a difference and save the city.
There’s simply too much crammed into the “Pilot’ for the show’s own good. First our hero is a cop, then he’s a private cop, then he’s on the run, then he’s dead, then he’s helping bank robbers, then he’s in training, then he’s a super-hero. Whoa! There’s at least four or five episodes of plot all (poorly) crammed into one.
Also troubling is the early reveal of the identity of the bad guy to our hero (we wouldn’t want him to have to do any real detective work, now would we?), and some inexcusable father/son schmaltz laid on way too thick for my tastes.
There are moments, however, where the show embraces the ridiculousness of the situation that it becomes somewhat fun. Very stupid, but somewhat fun. And the action of the cape itself, whether or not it’s at all plausible, does look good of film. Given time The Cape might make an okay guilty pleasure, but the writing will have to improve drastically to amount to anything more.