First Watch: Crossing Lines – “Pilot” (Season 1, Episode 1 & 2)

“Like all good stories, this one begins with a beautiful woman: young, adventurous, full of life. Unfortunately, this story also starts with the end of that life — with her murder.”

As an unfortunate side-effect of the European Union, criminals have become able to avoid apprehension by crossing country lines due to lack of cooperation between police forces — at least, that’s what’s happening in the police procedural Crossing Lines. 

In an attempt to catch these boundary-crossing baddies, Major Louis Daniel (Marc Lavoine) of the International Criminal Court (ICC) assembles a team of specialists from around the globe to catch the criminals. Before the team can get to work, however, Major Daniel must travel to The Hague to meet with ICC bigwig Michel Dorne (Donald Sutherland) to receive approval for his team. After initially being turned down, Dorne is convinced to get the Court to reconsider Daniel’s team. In a decision very reminiscent to the formation of Major Crimes in The Wire, the Court grants approval for “just this one case” — which we all know will have to change since the show is longer than one episode.

So, who makes up this international super team?

  • The American, Carl Hickman (William Fichtner): the show’s reluctant hero and Sherlock-esque super-sleuth. Prior to joining Daniel’s team, Hickman was an living in Amsterdam, working as a garbage man for a carnival. He had been released from the NYPD when his right hand was maimed while he was on duty.
  • The Brit, Sienna Pride (Genevieve O’Reilly): the team’s posh interrogation specialist from Scotland Yard.
  • The Irishman, Tommy McConnel (Richard Flood): the team’s weapons and tactical expert and bare-knuckle brawler. Throughout the pilot, Tommy gets off on the wrong foot with a few of the other members of the team (namely Carl and Sienna), which leads to them deducing things about his past.
  • The Italian, Eva Vittoria (Gabriella Pession): the team’s anti-Mafia specialist which will surely come up some time and totally not end up making her the Aquaman of this Justice League.
  • The Frenchwoman, Anne-Marie San (Moon Dailly): the team’s trafficking expert and Daniel’s right hand. She apparently has a condition known as hyperthymesia (or, as Wikipedia explained to me: ” she can recall the vast majority of personal experiences and events in her life”) which seems to explain why she was chosen for the team.
  • The German, Sebastian Berger (Tom Wlaschiha): the team’s token tech specialist.
  • The Frenchman, Major Louis Daniel: the team’s whatever-the-Justice-League-equivalent-of-Nick Fury is. Why couldn’t they have made a reference to the Avengers instead of the Justice League?

So, what is the “one and only case” that Daniel’s team is assigned to? The team is sent out to track down a serial killer who has been butchering women in the woods beyond recognition outside four of the major cities across Europe. Unfortunately for the team, the French police department does not want to recognize their right to investigate crimes in French jurisdiction and it poses as another hurdle in the way of the team.

It seems to me like this type of annoyance will become part of the formula for the series: the local police forces will continue to pop-up as reoccurring minor antagonists to interrupt the team while they hunt that episode’s criminal. I could be wrong, though. While I did find the majority of Crossing Lines to be pretty standard, I was pleasantly surprised by a couple of events in the pilot.

I was assigned to review Crossing Lines by my partner, who — stuffed from the never-ending buffet of police procedurals presented on television these days — could not fathom sampling another summer-time cop show. Even as a (recently admitted) fan of the genre, I was a bit skeptical about picking up Crossing Lines due to the vast number of procedurals about to hit my plate over the summer. Fortunately, I left the two-hour pilot sufficiently satisfied to give the show a few more episodes without too much of a fuss.

  • Rating: “Sufficiently satisfied”.
  • Comment: Crossing Lines is (so far) not too different from your average police procedural, but it was still decent enough to get me interested.
  • You might like Crossing Lines if you like: police procedurals, crime drama, Criminal Minds, David Fichtner, The A-Team.

You can watch new episodes of Crossing Lines on Sundays at 9 PM PST on NBC or catch up on old episodes on Hulu.

What did you think of the pilot of Crossing Lines? Haven’t decided if it’s worth your time yet? Want me to follow the show for the season? Let us know in the comments.

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About Daniel

I'm a guy who spends way too much time playing board games and watching television with his friends. View all posts by Daniel

One response to “First Watch: Crossing Lines – “Pilot” (Season 1, Episode 1 & 2)

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