‘Human Target’ – ‘The Wife’s Tale’: Making amends

Senior Television Writer
11.24.10 22 Comments


A quick review of tonight’s “Human Target” coming up just as soon as my glasses fall into a meat-grinder…

After last week’s status quo re-setter, “The Wife’s Tale” gives a better idea of how the show will work with that status quo – and my response remains mixed.

The action, as always, was great, as director Mimi Leder and the stunt team went to town on the parkour-flavored chase through the parking lot, as well as Chance and the assassin’s climactic fight with barbecue implements. I enjoyed seeing Ames apprentice under Guerrero (even if Janet Montgomery’s American accent remains this baffling thing that only sometimes sounds like she’s auditioning for a “Jersey Shore” scripted spin-off), and Molly Parker is one of the strongest actors they’ve been able to bring in to play Chance’s client.

But the Ilsa/Winston interaction annoyed the hell out of me (at one point in my notes I wrote, “It’s tension for the sake of tension, and unnecessary”), and while I like the idea of Chance doing penance for one of the murders he committed in his former life, I don’t know that they did a good job explaining why the wife doesn’t go to the cops after her life is saved and she knows the identity of her husband’s killer. The thing is, Chance clearly wouldn’t run, and probably wouldn’t even fight a prosecution, and she clearly doesn’t forgive him. Even if the idea was that she didn’t feel saving her life absolved him of the earlier crime, but was enough for her to leave him alone, that needed to be included somewhere in the scene where she confronts him at the end. Matt Miller wants the cases to have more personal stakes for the characters this year, and that’s a fine idea, but he then has to follow through with the logistical consequences as much as the emotional ones.

(Also, two more minor nits: 1)Why doesn’t Chance – who’s had no problems about killing assassins in the past – just kill the bad guy here when he has the drop on him in the campus lab? 2)What happened to the idea introduced last year that Chance has an uncanny ability to avoid having his face turn up on surveillance cameras?)

What did everybody else think?

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