TV - Forever

Steve Taylor-Bryant discovers that, like diamonds, police procedural should be Forever...

There are a few shows that have just recently been picked up by their American networks for future seasons and, whilst we have these shows in the United Kingdom, we seem to have neglected them or at least not discussed them on public forums the way we would a superhero show.

Created by Matthew Miller, who wrote Hitch and Chuck, Forever is a police procedural drama with a slight twist. Doctor Henry Morgan (Ioan Gruffudd) works in the New York City morgue with his assistant Lucas Wahl (Joel David Moore) and helps the police department solve crimes. He partners up with Detective Jo Martinez (Alana De La Garza) and hunts the evil criminal elements in the city, however Henry is immortal. Killed over 200 years ago whilst protecting a sick slave on a ship, Henry can no longer die. Instead, when he is mortally wounded he awakes naked in the Hudson River. He lives above an antique shop run by his adopted son and now old man Abe (Judd Hirsch) who he thinks is the only one who knows his secret until he stalked by another immortal Anonymous later known as Adam (Burn Gorman).

It's not a game changer like a True Detective but as a police drama it works as well as any other show. It has the same links between old fashioned detective work and medical science that CSI and NCIS utilise so well, although you need to go back to Quincy to see it done without flaw, and the cast are solid television actors. Joel David Moore plays a slightly different version of the intern he starred as in Bones, Gorman makes a great British bad guy even if I can't shake Torchwood from my mind every time he's on screen, and Alana De La Garza is a more than capable on screen detective. The show though is stolen by two greats of the screen. I have so much time for Judd Hirsch and he never disappoints. Whether in Taxi or losing the plot Network style in Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, Hirsch is just extremely watchable and in forever he may play a man that in physical age is Henry's peer but there is a childishness about him that shows he really is just Henry's son at heart.

Gruffudd has always impressed me. Not necessarily with his performances but with the bravery in his casting choices. Gruffudd was superb in Hornblower and could have stayed in that period drama world carving out a successful career for himself but instead jumps from things like that to Fantastic Four to playing Tony Blair in W to voiceover work in Family Guy and American Dad before settling once again on our television screen with Castle and Monday Mornings. As Henry, Gruffudd brings enough exasperation and confusion to his character that you would expect from an immortal that doesn't know why he lives whilst all he loves withers and dies around him. He is very Sherlock like in his opinions at crime scenes but not in an arrogant way more an experience way, and the screen time he shares with Hirsch is worth the time invested in the season

It is CSI Highlander and no part of the show is original in its creation but there is enough of everything it pretends to be for it to work really well. Go check out Season 1 on your catch up service knowing that Season 2 is confirmed, you won't regret it.

Image - ABCNetwork

Forever is currently on Sky 1 on Thursdays at 9 pm.
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