Sunday, July 8, 2012

Let’s go steal some laughs! Leverage returns Sunday

TNT’s ‘Leverage’ is a perfect summer show.

It’s light.

It’s fun.

It’s impeccably cast.

Oh, and the dialogue just sparkles.

The TNT gem returns Sunday for its fifth season – and for me it couldn’t have come at a better time.

I watch a lot of television, don’t get me wrong, but ‘Leverage’ has a special place in my heart. It ranks right up there with ‘Psych’ for me.

I want quality television. That’s a given.

I also want something that’s going to entertain me without depressing me. That’s where ‘Leverage’ fits in.

‘Leverage’ is about a thief, hitter, hacker and grifter that come together under the leadership of a former insurance investigator to help the helpless.

It’s kind of like ‘Robin Hood’ – you know, they steal from the rich to give to the poor. Or even ‘The A-Team.’

The cast is made up of Academy Award winner Timothy Hutton as Nate Ford (aka the Mastermind), Christian Kane as Eliot Spencer (aka the hitter), Aldis Hodge as Alec Hardison (aka the hacker), Beth Riesgraf as Parker (aka the thief) and Gina Bellman as Sophie Devereaux (aka the grifter).

Not only did the cast gel from the get-go, but they all have unique relationships with each other. My favorite is the banter between Hardison and Eliot – but ‘Leverage’ is one of the few shows where I don’t hate anybody.

Essentially, ‘Leverage’ is a show that really doesn’t have some bigger meaning.

Sure, the group wants to help the little guy – but they’re really just about exposing corruption in fun and inventive ways.

The show returns Sunday for its 10 episode summer run (the additional five episodes usually run in the fall).

Not much is known about the upcoming season – but Cary Elwes will play the mark in the premiere episode. If his recent run on ‘Psych’ is any indication, it should be a fun ride.

Former ‘Firefly’ actor Adam Baldwin is also slated to make an appearance later in the season. And we can only hope that Wil Wheaton makes another guest appearance as Chaos. What? I can't help but love him.

The true magic of ‘Leverage’ is not in the cons – don’t get me wrong, they’re fun – but it’s in the chemistry of the cast and their willingness to make fun of themselves.

All five characters are richly drawn.

In fact, the only time ‘Leverage’ hasn’t been at the top of the game was the second half of season two when Bellman was off on maternity leave and former ‘Star Trek: Voyager’ actress Jeri Ryan filled in for several episodes.

It’s not that Ryan is bad – she’s just not Bellman.

Each ‘Leverage’ cast member has a part to play – and sometimes they mix it up, which usually leads to hilarious results.

Given how dark ‘Falling Skies’ is right now, how deep ‘The Newsroom’ is and how bleak ‘True Blood’ is, ‘Leverage’ is premiering at a perfect time for me.

How about you?

What do you think? Are you going to tune into the fifth season of ‘Leverage’?


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