In CBS’ New York reissue of the 1980s series “The Equalizer” starring the late Edward Woodward as a stoic threat with a populist message, Queen Latifah plays with multiple hyphens Robyn McCal she is an enigmatic former CIA agent who uses their special skills to help those who have nowhere else to turn As another exhumation from CBS on classic crime / drama series of the last century (including “MacGyver,” “Magnum Pme, “Hawaii Five-0”, “SW.UNITEThere are a number of recalls to the original series that the reboot is mainly based on (not Denzel Washington’s film adaptations), but they likely won’t work for new audiences mean

Like the masculine “Equalizer” signs, Latifahs McCall is a former CIA intelligence agent who became disillusioned with government methods and opted for the civilian way of life What leads her to a new career as a reformer is an accidental involvement with the case of a young woman – Jewel (Lorna Courtney) – charged with murder and on the run from the real killers, assisted by an Elon Musk-like technician, executive It is representative of the series’ many inventions that McCall accidentally sees the woman being led one night by an inconspicuous man into some sort of warehouse on Coney Island, perhaps reluctantly As a fighter for the proletariat, of course, out of protective curiosity, she follows them out of protective curiosity and is soon embroiled in a conspiracy that has deeply faked videos, a murdered lawyer, mercenary, supplemented by the usual car / motorbike chases, fight seque (Watch Latifah effortlessly ship four bats, simple one-liners, and the like

Unlike the original and film adaptations with steadfast, lonely guardians – seemingly without much backstory – Latifah puts a human face on a well-worn formula and bases her character on reality.She has a family, including her wild 15-year-old daughter Delilah (Laya DeLeon Hayes) and Aunt Vi (the great Lorraine Toussaint who really has nothing to do here) and friends.She has to figure out how to take out the soldier in her, where she feels most comfortable, and turn on the mother, where she seems to be struggling the most.It exists in two worlds and there is room throughout the season for the series to really grapple with that dichotomy.But nothing in the episode suggests Latifah, who exudes natural instincts and an easy-going confidence, will become not given much compelling them to do anything other than cruising on their charisma and gel checks for the duration of the series

Their presence alone is not enough to distinguish the series from the rest of the CBS assembly line.A key difference between two versions of the series is that creators and showrunners Andrew Marlowe and Terri Miller likely rely on to make them stand out that her focus is on Latifah, who becomes only the fifth black woman in the history of television, to direct an hour-long drama on the radio – after Teresa Graves (“Get Christie Love!”), Kerry Washington (“Scandal”), Viola Davis (“Hot to Get Away With Murder”) and Simone Missick (“Alle Aufstieg”) The series also wants to make it clear that she’s not just a woman who happens to be black She is a black woman, although racing won’t necessarily be a recurring theme throughout the season

A scene late in the pilot where McCall affectionately but firmly tells her daughter that black girls are not particularly favored by social opportunity also underscores what audiences should expect as the running theme throughout the series, McCall is a black one Woman trying to improve the playing field for people who too often run out of options Without particularly interesting twists, this “equalizer” can work out the essential characteristics of the woman in the driver’s seat and find new ways to capitalize on the many talents of Latifah and McCall to use correctly

Otherwise, this latest iteration could be disappointingly general, both for fans of the Woodward version and new audiences looking for a straightforward, fun process

At first glance, it seems like a series that is perfect for the present day, as polls after polls show that everyday Americans increasingly do not trust the institutions they are supposed to defend and protect and find themselves utterly powerless feel to be fighting against an all too powerful system that is being empowered by overabundant sociopaths and corporations

“Everyone plays chess,” McCall complains to her former CIA handler, mentor, and now friend William Bishop (Chris Noth as the appropriately grinning version of probably every character he’s played on television) “Nobody thinks about the living, breathing parts we sacrifice along the way”

When Bishop tries to convince her to join his lucrative private security firm – “babysitting billionaires” – she refuses, and she is not interested in returning to the CIA, which leaves her in a horribly abused, potentially fatal job in Afghanistan (which she still has nightmares about) and it will never sell out. Instead, she wants to “help the people I couldn’t save” ”

There is potential there for a compelling Robin Hood-esque fable that could be exciting.Unfortunately, it’s CBS, and time will tell if the show’s creators and showrunners Andrew Marlowe and Terri Miller will embrace far more intriguing opportunities

Her ad hoc team consists of Latifah and Noth as serial regulars to help McCall with every case of the week It’s made up of stick characters like the clever sniper Melody Bayani (Liza Lapira) and her technically genius husband Harry Keshegian (Adam Goldberg) who can hack into anything together they form an underground company that caters to an audience familiar with network crime proceedings familiar, should be instantly recognizable But there’s a story between McCall, Bayani, Keshegian, and Bishop that could be fertile ground for stories beyond the format of the week

Tory Kittles as Detective Marcus Dante, a smart and shrewd NYPD detective determined to uncover the equalizer’s true identity, serves as the necessary wrinkle of a possible romance between Dante and McCall, or at least some sexual tension, is a possibility, there he wants to find out if she’s the boogie woman working outside the confines of the bureaucratic machine.Like her Batman to his Inspector Gordon, they both share a deep commitment to ridding the city of crime, but their methods are in sharp contrast to one another. p>

In Latifah’s first return to scripted television since Living Single, which aired on Fox from 1993 to 1998, The Equalizer is both an attempt to reinterpret the original and its genre and undoubtedly CBS drama The network is clearly banking on its revamped combo that works in the traditionally coveted post-Super Bowl slot, however, it’s less clear whether this first episode will be fascinating enough to support a large enough audience

“The Equalizer” premieres immediately after CBS airs Super Bowl LV on Sunday the 7th It will air at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT on Feb. February

Sign up: Stay up to date with the latest movie and TV news! Sign up for our e-mail newsletter here

Queen Latifah

World News – CA – “The Equalizer” Review: Queen Latifah’s return to script television should land with the CBS demo, but no further