Saturday, February 17, 2007

TV preview: Jericho season 1.5

• CBS' post-nuclear drama returns on Wednesday.

Genre: Drama
Logistics: CBS, 7 p.m. Wednesday
Cast: Skeet Ulrich, Gerald McRaney, Pamela Reed, Lennie James, Sprague Grayden
Episode: &&&

Jericho seems to slyly reference one of its obvious inspirations, 1980s TV miniseries The Day After, with the title of its return episode, "The Day Before." The serial is back after an annoying midseason hiatus long enough for the fans to lose interest (Lost, anyone?). I didn't stick with Jericho past the first few episodes, although the premiere was a superbly crafted hour of television, and its nuclear-holocaust-in-the-2000s premise was bizarre enough to pique my interest. Enjoyable but not pulse-pounding, this season 1.5 premiere jumps back to the day before the bombs hit. We see Jake (Skeet Ulrich), struggling with past demons, trying unsuccessfully to make a respectable living, while the mysterious Rod (Lennie James) becomes further mired in viewer suspicion as it becomes clear that he is no innocent. He spends most of the episode engaged in cloak and dagger webcam conversations and trying to round up his children against the wishes of his estranged wife. Meanwhile, Mayor Johnston Green (Gerald McRaney) ponders his political future in Jericho. This episode is unlikely to win over any new fans, but it hints at possibly interesting things to come.

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