No matter what the age of streaming may convince modern television audiences of, let it never be forgotten that there are few things as reliable on the small screen as a solidly entertaining police procedural. And, it’s with no surprise the house that does it better than anyone, CBS, is taking its latest out into the wild with mostly decent results in the form of Tommy.
Created by Paul Attanasio and starring Edie Falco, Tommy follows the life of Abigail “Tommy” Thomas, a New York police officer hired by the mayor of Los Angeles as the city’s first female Chief of Police in the fall-out of various scandals at the hands of her predecessor.
How one takes Tommy will come down to how one views straight-down-center, CBS procedurals. If it’s not your thing, Tommy isn’t going to be the show that convinces you otherwise. However, if they are your thing and the idea of Edie Falco’s return to prime-time intrigues you, then Tommy will certainly be one worth checking out.
Falco’s Tommy is fun to watch and the world that surrounds her has the potential to deliver some really great stories, especially if any of those stories involve her co-star Thomas Sadoski, who plays the Mayor of Los Angeles. In fact, it seems fair to say the energy Sadoski brought to his famed role in Aaron Sorkin’s The Newsroom is the same kind of energy he brings here. The fact is, wise-ass Thomas Sadoski is the best kind of Thomas Sadoski.
The series also hits the kind of emotional beats one would expect from this kind of show. The kind that pull at the heart-strings when it matters most because it’s clear Tommy’s intention isn’t to re-invent the wheel. It’s merely to spin that wheel as best it can in hopes of garnering a decent amount of longevity on CBS.
Overall, Tommy works and works well. Is it as network procedurally as network procedurals get? You bet. But, sometimes that’s what the audience wants. A healthy dose of weekly reliability and there’s no other genre on television that can deliver on that better than a good, old-fashioned cop drama. There are moments that sing. There are moments that are basic. But, in the end, what Tommy brings to the table is something its core audience will likely want more of in the weeks and months to come.
Tommy premieres Thursday, February 6th at 10/9c on CBS