Tuesday, January 17, 2012

White Collar Mid-Season Premiere Review

White Collar return with 6 new episodes for its mid-season premiere today (Jan. 17). It has already been renewed for a fourth season and will be filming in New York this year. The series follows White Collar criminal, Neal Caffrey (Matt Boomer), who makes a deal with the FBI to catch other criminals like himself. He uses his experience, tact, and even his own techniques to catch other white collar criminals in the act and put them behind bars to be temporarily freed from prison himself. As long as he’s helping them he can more or less live his life. Last summer’s finale ended on quite the cliffhanger. Special Agent, Peter Burke (Tim DeKay) finds out that Neal has the stolen Nazi treasure and his wife, Elizabeth, has been kidnapped.

This episode marks the directorial debut of series star, Dekay. Among the featured cast is Hilarie Burton in very different material for her. She became renowned due to her unique, spunky, although slightly jaded, and passionate portrayal of Peyton Sawyer on One Tree Hill. One of her best outside performances was in the small-town indie film, Our Very Own, and the vastly underrated high school film breaking norms, Normal Adolescent Behavior. Recently, she’s had darker roles based around relationship woes and bad home situations in The Secret Life of Bees and supernatural horrors in Solstice. The dramatic crime thriller is perhaps the only ground the young and talented Burton has tackled and thus I commend her.

For those that enjoy crime dramas this will probably be right up your alley. I have never been particularly drawn in by the genre in television. White Collar gave me a similar feel. There’s action, increasingly tension rising plots, and plenty at stake. I simply wasn’t invested enough to really care though. The characters, acting, dialogue, and story were decent, but none caught my eye; they were simply there. Again, I have a feeling a big part of this is that it has never been my favorite brand of TV. I don’t have anything bad to say about the series. It works for some people and it doesn’t for others. I happen to be in the latter category, considering the viewership and renewal of a 4th season there are clearly millions of people who fit in to the first category, who are invested in the show and all of its components.

Review by Kelsey Z.

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