THE FINDER Series Premiere Discussion - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

THE FINDER Series Premiere Discussion

January 12, 2012 by  

It’s a great moment when some of the hype and publicity for a new show clears away and the first episode actually airs. At that point, viewers can genuinely weigh in with what they’ve seen and not just with what they’ve heard about. Such is the case with THE FINDER’s premiere on Fox.

Sure, two of this show’s characters, Walter Sherman and Leo Knox, made appearances in a season 6 episode of BONES, but in my opinion, “An Orphan Walks Into a Bar” is a good place to start fairly judging this new series.

I liked the episode.  The show maintained its original setting, “The Ends of the Earth” bar in Florida, and I quite like the look and feel of it. Gone is the previous bar owner, Ike (with no explanation, but she made me crazy, so I’m okay with it), and new characters Isabel and Willa are in place. Isabel Zambada is a U.S. Marshall who unofficially partners up with Walter on cases and in the bedroom. Willa Monday (a character name somehow trendy and contrived at the same time) is a 16-year-old gypsy-type troublemaker who has been assigned to work at the bar as part of a juvenile delinquency court order.

Isabel’s character worked for me, and I like that she and Walter have a casual affection going on — it seems genuine for them both and based out of friendship for the most part. They also respect one another professionally, so yes…it worked for me. Thoughts from you? Is it smart for series creator Hart Hanson and this team to have the male and female leads ALREADY be sleeping together?

The character of Willa is one I’m less convinced about. I don’t know how a 16-year-old girl is sent to work at a bar in the middle of nowhere with two grown men — what court of law would do that? Additionally, her personal life storyline — that she may or may not be trying to run away or prove to her allegedly delinquent family that she can still help in the “family business” — seems like a lot of extra and distracting exposition. Her cousin (Timon, T-bone, did anyone catch his name?) is shady and strange, and I’m just not sure what the point of it all is. On the surface, this character addition seems like the sort of thing passed down from the networks, “We need a kid on here. Kids are popular. Kids love the kids these days” etc.  Not to say that I hated every scene Willa was in or anything — I just think it will be hard to fit her character in realistically to the rest of the series. What do you think?

Because this was a full-on episode, Leo’s character had more time to shine, making him less of a sidekick. There were still elements of that, sure, but I really liked a lot of Leo’s moments and I think he held his own as a strong individual character. My favorite moment was when Walter compared him to Jesus and Cal Ripken Jr., and Leo liked the compliment because he knows how much Walter likes Cal Ripken Jr. Ha! Back to Willa, I also really like how Leo optimistically wants her to be a good person and to stick around The Ends of the Earth. The wind chime he gave her as a personal touch was pretty, and I think Leo is a good person. His optimism toward people makes him a foil for Walter, so it will be interesting to see how that all plays out — both with Willa and in other stories.

Walter’s main tension is his internal belief that his previous brain trauma is what has caused/facilitated/released his finder power. If he deals with the brain trauma, he may lose the power — and he doesn’t want that to happen. One issue I have is that I don’t see any other evidence of brain trauma. He’s not good with people, he doesn’t trust banks, etc., but there’s nothing to suggest that those are side effects of any brain damage. He’s literal and direct with people, sometimes to the point of rudeness, and that really came to light in this episode’s case. The son of a Lt. Col Allison arrives at the bar and asks for Walter’s help in finding his father. Walter makes it clear that if he takes the case, he will find the former soldier — dead or alive.

I liked his statement that sometimes it’s not worth looking for things because what turns up is not always good news, and I imagine the show will continue along that line — challenging Walter to communicate effectively with people when he finds information they may or may not want to know. I liked the case in this episode, the intrigue surrounding drug trafficking, the display of military respect, and the clear love the Allison father and son had for one another (did anyone else tear up when the son was reading the father’s letter?). This case ended well, though not necessarily happy, and I hope the show continues to toe that line of distinction.

So yes, I liked this episode. I’ll be tuning in for the next episode as well. You?

One more quick note: I think it’s a mistake for the showrunners to openly declare that THE FINDER is meant to be a companion show to BONES. To do so only invites comparisons, and in my opinion, THE FINDER will have a hard time stacking up against BONES, especially the early seasons of that series. The seemingly inevitable comparisons will begin with Brennan and Walter, and that is not necessarily fair to either of those characters.

Brennan and Booth were both prickly, somewhat closed off, etc. in the beginning of BONES, but even in the very first episode, there was a lot of depth there — a lot of story just waiting to be told. And I don’t see that depth with Walter…yet. He’s quirky, and I’m fascinated by his finder powers, sure. I like his character, and I will keep watching, but it’s not the “I need to see the next episode/DVD/season ASAP” sort of emotion being generated. My two cents.

But enough from me. Did you like this premiere? Are you still buying Walter’s Finder Power? How about Willa and Isabel…do you like their characters and where they fit in this series? Will you be tuning in for more? If you watched the episode, the comments are open, so let’s discuss!

And if you didn’t get the chance to watch the series premiere, you can either download it (and the BONES winter finale) for free on iTunes, stream it on or watch it On Demand from your cable provider.

Filed under #1 featured, The Finder


4 Responses to “THE FINDER Series Premiere Discussion”

  1. Dani on January 12th, 2012 11:12 pm

    Considering how badly the borked Booth and Brennans relationship and subsequent hookup, I say its a very good thing that the show has the two of them sleeping together already.. cause lets face it, the one thing that Hart Hanson and co dont do well.. its relationships lol 😛

  2. Jared on January 13th, 2012 10:36 am

    Have to agree with Dani on the somewhat botched relationship between B&B. Yeah they finally got together but truthfully is that how any fan wanted it to play out? I get the showrunners were influenced by Emily’s real life pregnancy but still I watched Bones for the crime mysteries and the well played romance and the end of season six broke away from that.

    I still love Bones but I would have liked to see the relationship done different.

  3. bonesjonsing on January 13th, 2012 11:28 am

    I agree, there is no way that a 16 juvenile in trouble with the law would be court ordered to work at a bar of all places. It is beyond implausible. They couldn’t find a way to introduce this character without this ridiculous storyline.

  4. Kath (canakatydid) on January 13th, 2012 2:33 pm

    I am a possible rarity…a non-Bones fan (I don’t dislike it, I just don’t watch it!) who tuned in to “The Finder” to check it out on its own merits (and the infinite merits of one Mr. Geoff Stults) and I am very glad that I did. I liked it and will continue watching as it had both laugh-out-loud moments and a few heartwarming tear-jerkers (plus an interesting mystery to be solved, of course). It will be interesting to see how they continue to balance long-term character arcs with the case of the week.

    I agree with your thoughts on “Willa” Sarah and found her scenes (without the amazing Michael Clarke Duncan! or that hottie military student) were the weak spots in the hour.

    And I like that the “will they or won’t they” factor has been eliminated, or at least changed up a bit.

    Looking forward to more.