Person of Interest is a show that could really only exist this decade. On the surface it’s just a variation on the Equalizer motif but it’s so loaded with paranoia, distrust and conspiracy that it could only be a product of recent years.
The conceit is very simple. There’s a computer whiz/geek who developed a computer for “the Government.” A computer which tracks everything we do, everything we say and everything we send online and identifies potential threats before they happen.
The Government wants to find terrorists of course and since this is of incredibly dubious legality they keep it all extra double super secret.
In the first season alone we’ve had corrupt cops, corrupt NSA people, corrupt politicians and corrupt CIA agents.
None of the four central characters in the show actually trust each other or reveal any more information than they have to. They are all investigating each other in one way or another. There are so many layers of conspiracy and distrust you need a map to keep track of it.
Throw on top of that the notion of an ever-present computer watching you and analysing behavior. Talk about an idea whose time has come.
Yeah the tech is sometimes a little hand-wavy but it does better than most shows. The violence is well.. violent? But they do face up to the real consequences of going round playing vigilante and kneecapping everyone in sight.
For an action show there’s really a lot of fun to be had. In fact I basically have only one negative. Why is Jim Caviezel doing an impression of Clint Eastwood with the personality removed?
He wanders around dropping deadpan lines but showing no real emotion at all.
It’s an odd performance (is he perhaps supposed to be suffering from PTSD?) that makes it hard to really care about what is nominally the lead character of the show.
Fortunately the other characters easily make up for that particular shortfall and it’s really them who keep me coming back for another episode.
Person of Interest: Season One – http://amzn.to/14EGmx9