Monday, September 20, 2010

Lone Star anything but lonely

    Tonight, Fox will present it's new pilot, Lone Star.  The series centers around Robert / Bob Allen (James Wolk, You Again), a con man leading a double life in Midland and Houston, Texas.  As the pilot begins, Bob has been working schemes for his father, John (David Keith, The Class) for years, but is having doubts about continuing the family business.  When his Houston father-in-law, Clint (Jon Voight) offers him a position in his company, John is excited that his very talented son has hit pay dirt yet again.  But Bob sees it as something else entirely: the chance to make a real life for himself.

     In Houston, Bob is married to Clint's daughter, Cat (Adrianne Palicki, Friday Night Lights).  This is the reality that seems most dangerous for Bob to me.  Clint is certainly crazy dangerous, obviously having done something bad to his brother, who attempted to pull one over on him.  Clint also has two sons, and while Drew (Bryce Johnson, Pretty Little Liars) likes Bob, Trammell (Mark Deklin) is suspcious, and seems just as threatening to Clint.  While Bob claims to love Cat, and thus want to stay in this situation, I didn't really feel the chemistry between them in the pilot.  I'm thinking if it ever comes down to him choosing between the two lives Bob is building for himself, despite this one providing the solid income, I'm voting on ditching Houston.

     Midland is a different landscape entirely.  There, Bob was known as Robert, and only pretended to be in the oil business, swindling the locals in a series of fake deals.  Against his father's playbook, Robert fell in love with Lindsay (Eloise Mumford).  As the pilot unfolds, it becomes clear that Robert's charade in Midland is about to come crashing down when some locals look into who actually owns the oilfields that they invested in.  I won't spoil it, because the episode hasn't aired yet, but Robert has a clever way to keep this life going, too, although it further ties him to Houston.

     It all may sound a bit complicated, but it doesn't play that way.  Wolk shines in the central role, and the supporting cast each bring a great element to the table.  Palicki shows range, as her FNL character much more closesly resembles Lindsay than Cat.  Things will get further mired when Cat's daughter, Grace (Alexandra Doke), a main character who was not in the first episode, is introduced.  It was a really well put together pilot, and I am anxious to see how it will progress.

     Lone Star premieres tonight at 9pm on Fox.

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