My Own Worst Enemy (TV, 2008)


Who remembers this TV show? Interesting, but unsuccessful. From Death Ray 16.

TWO AND A HALF STARS

Directors: david Semel, Adam Kane

Writer: Jason Smilovic

Starring: Christian Slater, Mädchen Amick, Alfre Woodard, Mike O’Malley, Saffron Burrows

Two-faced drama from the man behind The Bionic Woman

If you can ignore the ludicrous premise of My Own Worst Enemy, it is good TV. The set-up is that Henry Spivey (Slater) is a constructed front for deep-cover assassin Edward Albright (er, Slater) who works for a very secretive black-ops part of some unnamed US intelligence service. When the chip that activates the dormant Edward goes awry, Henry finds himself in Edward’s bloodstained shoes, and vice versa. Rather than just kill him, Edward’s boss (Woodard) keeps him alive and in action, because to reveal the failure of his brain modifications would lead to the liquidation of her department. This really is no way to run the spying game at all.

Once you get past this Alias-esque nonsense, you can appreciate the dramatic situations and moral questions the show throws up. There is even space for levity, with Henry constantly waking up next to his grinning wife, who is sexually blissed out thanks to super-spy Edward’s bedroom skills. We could make some grandiose point about America’s relationship between its light and dark sides: Henry enjoys the American dream, yet terrible things are done to uphold it. That, however, would be a stretch.

Otherwise it’s a typically slick piece of UStelevision, though, like Alias, its numerous far-flung locations are mocked up in a slipshod way. They might get the sound of sirens right in London, for example, but cars drive on the left here, and you only get “thru” on signs written by illiterates in this country, chaps.

The best thing in the show is Slater’s performance as the split man. This alone sells the shonky concept, but for how long we’ll swallow it is very debateable. Fun, but flawed.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s