Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Fox Mid-Season Pilot Review: Breaking In - Premieres April 6; MeTV Network Now Cleared In 45% of the Country!

Breaking In

Breaking In - Wednesdays 9:30PM ET/PT on Fox
Premieres Wednesday, April 6, 2010 at 9:30PM ET/PT

Breaking In is an offbeat half-hour workplace comedy about a high-tech security firm that takes extreme -- and often questionable -- measures to sell its protection services. Created by Adam F. Goldberg and Seth Gordon, the series centers on a team of uniquely skilled oddball geniuses hand-picked to work for a manipulative mastermind.

Contra Security, corporate America's answer to The A-Team, gives clients a sense of security by first ripping it away. The firm is led by Oz (Christian Slater), a larger-than-life head honcho who is a man of mystery and master of manipulation. The members of the odd squad include alluring bad girl Melanie (Odette Annable), who is in charge of lock-picking, safe-cracking and heart-breaking; and Cash (Alphonso McAuley), a fanboy who specializes in strategy, logistics and office pranks only a mad genius could think up.

Oz's newest recruit, plucked right out of college, is lovable and charming computer hacker Cameron Price (Bret Harrison). Unfortunately for Cameron, cracking into state-of-the-art security systems is a lot easier than dealing with his co-workers. Between Melanie's sex appeal and Cash's hazing, Cameron has more than a few obstacles to overcome if he wants to cement his status as part of the team and become Oz's go-to guy.


Cast Details:

* Christian Slater as Oz
* Bret Harrison as Cameron Price
* Odette Annable as Melanie Green
* Trevor Moore as Josh Armstrong
* Alphonso McAuley as Calvin 'Cash' Sparks

Christian Slater (Oz) has established himself as one of the most talented actors of his generation. Slater most recently appeared in the television dramas The Forgotten and My Own Worst Enemy, and his additional credits include appearances on My Name Is Earl, The West Wing and Alias. His film credits include starring opposite Anthony Hopkins in Slipstream, He Was a Quiet Man with William H. Macy and Elisha Cuthbert and Bobby, which revolves around the assassination of U.S. Senator Robert F. Kennedy, written and directed by Emilio Estevez.

Bret Harrison (Cameron) most recently starred in the critically acclaimed television series Reaper as Sam Oliver, the devil's bounty hunter in the supernatural comedy and can also currently be seen in the recurring role of Dr. Sidney Miller on the sci-fi drama V. Harrison is familiar to Fox audiences from his leading role in the comedy series The Loop, as well as recurring roles on Grounded For Life, That '70s Show and The O.C.

Odette Annable (Yustman) (Melanie) made her mark starring in J.J. Abrams' box-office hit Cloverfield. Annable went on to star in the comedy You Again, David S. Goyer's horror-thriller The Unborn and the comedy/drama Operation: Endgame opposite Zach Galifianakis. She will next be seen in the thriller The Double starring Richard Gere and Topher Grace. She also had a role in the comedy Group Sex starring Josh Cooke and Greg Gunberg. Annable began her acting career at age five when she appeared with Arnold Schwarzenegger in Kindergarten Cop. After taking time to complete high school and to pursue a modeling career, she landed a starring role in the Jennifer Lopez-produced television series South Beach on UPN. She continued to work in television, starring as graduate student Aubrey Diaz on the critically acclaimed drama October Road for ABC. Her other television appearances include guest-starring roles on Brothers & Sisters opposite her husband Dave Annable, Life on Mars, Monk and Quintuplets and in the telefilm Reckless Behavior: Caught on Tape.

Trevor Moore (Josh) is best known as a founding member of the New York City-based comedy troupe The Whitest Kids U' Know, who currently have their own sketch comedy series on IFC. Moore's other note-worthy projects include The Trevor Moore Show, Uncle Morty's Dub Shack, and Miss March.

Alphonso McAuley (Cash) made his feature film debut playing Bucky in the 2004 hit Fat Albert. With his amazing comedic sensibilities and timing, McAuley went on to star as Orsten Artis in the 2006 movie Glory Road, based on the true story of the Texas Western Miners, opposite Josh Lucas and followed that film by co-starring in the feature films Pride opposite Terrence Howard and Nim's Island, starring Jodie Foster and Gerard Butler.


Pilot Plot:

We were given the first two episodes that are airing for review, which includes the second episode with special guest star Alyssa Milano!

#1 "Pilot" (Airs April 6, 2011)
Contra's man of mystery owner, Oz, blackmails his newest recruit, computer hacker Cameron, to join his team. Cameron quickly learns that cracking into state-of-the-art security systems is a lot easier than dealing with his co-workers, including the alluring Melanie, prank-pulling Cash and competitive Josh.

Guest starring are Michael Rosenbaum as Dutch and Jennifer Irwin as Creepy Carol. Co-starring are Scott Hoxby as Barry Gold, Jareb Dauplaise as Eric Gold, Rachelle Wood as hot girl, Jerrell Lee as car salesman and Austin Michael Coleman as 12-year old Cameron.
"Pilot" was written by Adam F. Goldberg and directed by Seth Gordon.

#2 "'Tis Better to Have Loved and Flossed" (April 13, 2011)
When Oz cryptically informs the team their latest case involves breaking into an old lady's home to steal the contents of her safe, the team thinks it will be a walk in the park - until they attempt to get through her security system. Meanwhile, Cameron meets a beautiful dentist (guest star Milano) who takes an active interest in his profession.

Special Guest Star Alyssa Milano as Amy. Guest starring are Michael Rosenbaum as Dutch, Jennifer Irwin as Creepy Carol and Luenell as Lunch Truck Lady. Co-starring are Mark Hicks as busboy, Ali Wong as Anna and Victoria Lomeli as 10-year-old Melanie.
"Tis Better to Have Loved and Flossed" was written by Adam F. Goldberg and directed by Seth Gordon.

Alyssa Milano and Bret Harrison


Analysis:

This is a fun off-beat comedy. I guess if you like The Office, you will like this show. It's not a mockumentary but the style and tone is similar and it's a workplace comedy in not your normal kind of "office" and work. On this show, Cameron is a college student and is good at hacking and will do it for money for other students. But the college has hired a security company to find any holes in their computer network and the company leader, Oz, noticed Cameron's hacking...but he doesn't report him, instead they have a proposition for him to join their team as an intern! Cameron says they have no proof of him hacking into the system, but their main "intel man" (Josh) has been posing as a transfer student in his French class and he asked him for the professor's password. No is not an option for Cameron so he is forced to join Contra Security.

Once he joins the company he meets all of the team members. Melanie Garcia is the attractive lock picker and surveillance expert. Josh Armstrong is usually the team leader and is a master of disguise. Cash is a prankster and the gadget man. And also in the office is worker Creepy Carol...and she really is creepy. Basically the company is a security company that breaks into the clients security before the bad guys get in. In the pilot, Cameron joins as the slickest hacker they have found. The entire episode basically is about this newbie and him fitting into the team. There is a lot of hazing, especially with Cash's pranks and also Josh is pretty ticked that Oz made Cameron the team leader in the latest job. Meanwhile, Cameron seems pretty attracted to Melanie...until he finds out she has a boyfriend named Dutch, who is pretty weird but has a nice car. Without giving away too much of the plot, the pilot's job is about taking a car from a car dealership...but of course plenty of things go wrong. Much of that is due to the hazing of Cameron, but they still have to fix the mistakes. And how they do it is pretty funny.

In the second episode, the next job is breaking into an "old lady's" house. It's not as easy as the team thinks and once again Cameron is the team leader, after Melanie declined. Cameron is still doing everything he can to impress Melanie, but Melanie doesn't see it as she is invested in Dutch. Later, Cameron meets a dentist (Amy, played by Alyssa Milano) at a panini place and they hit it off after Cameron helps her with some computer problem. There is a twist you will probably never see coming and it is good! This episode has the team more together and there are actual mistakes this time due to no deception from other team members. Well, Oz still is doing it, but he knows everything. He watches and knows all. Can Amy be trusted? Special guest star Alyssa Milano does a nice job and I hope we see her in a future episode as well. Though fans who wants to see Cameron and Melanie get together, might be at step one by the end of the second episode. Overall, both episodes were good with episode two being funnier!


Conclusion:

I liked the short-lived comedy The Knights of Prosperity on ABC, and this show reminds of that show. The difference is this is an actual company that are hired to "break in" to a company before the bad guys do, while on that other show they were group of blue-collars looking to rob Mick Jagger. This team is a much more organized team than the Knights, but could they make this work in the funny side like that show did? If it is like episode two all the time, then I think they could. Another thing I am more worried about is that this show will air after American Idol on Wednesday nights at 9:30pm. You might say that is a good thing, but the audience of this show would fit better out of something like Family Guy or anything on Fox Sunday. I just don't see viewers of Idol sticking for this show, unless they are young men. Don't flee after Idol!

This show is clearly my favorite Fox live-action comedy in I don't know how long. I know people like Raising Hope, but that show hasn't broke out and I think Breaking In deserves to. The characters are great in the pilot and it sets it up well, as pilots should do. Hopefully more funny will come out of it, because as of right now the only real funny stuff in the pilot was with Cash playing pranks on newbie Cameron and some of the antics later on in the pilot, which I won't give away as it is key to the plot. The 20-minute pilot was certainly interesting and easy to watch, though and flew by really quick when I watched it. And episode two is even better and explains the show again in the opening scene. Bret Harrison is a good lead and Christian Slater plays it well here. Harrison is also recurring on V as smart guy there, too. I think any guy can just look at Odette Annable and would want to watch this show. She is good in this for not just her looks, too. It's a good team with plenty of cool stuff to come, including that great guest appearance by Alyssa Milano (on the April 13 episode), who plays a "dentist!" You'll see. Anyway, you don't have to break in to anyone's house, school or work to watch this, just sit back and enjoy them breaking in for you on your TV! But don't try this at home kids, let Contra Security do it for you! As the cool theme song goes, "we got your back" and we got this show's back because it is good!


Final Numbers (out of 5 stars):

Watchability: 4/5
Funniness: 3.5/5
Overall: 3.5/5

-- Reviewed by Pavan on 04/05/11

Discuss the show after you watch it on Wednesday, April 6 on our message board.

Related Links:

  • Fox.com Official Site
  • TV.com
  • epguides.com
  • Internet Movie Database
  • Wikipedia
  • Breaking In Photo Gallery

    Preview:



    MeTV has finally gotten more affiliates beyond Chicago, Milwaukee and South Bend! Weigel Broadcasting Co. and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. (MGM) announced that MeTV (Memorable Entertainment Television) Network, the new digital classic television network, has surpassed the 45% clearance mark including 14 leading station groups! The station groups clearing the Me-TV Network include: Hearst Television, Raycom Media, Cox Television, Newport Television, Media General, Capitol Broadcasting, Bahakel Communications, Gray Television, Quincy Newspapers, New Age Media, MPS Media, London Broadcasting Group, Bonten Media Group, and Titan Broadcast Management.
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