Reviews

Rosewood (2015) TV Pilot Review

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Rosewood follows a brilliant private pathologist with a heart condition that means his life will end prematurely. Determined to live life to the fullest he works with Miami law enforcement to solve murders and forge meaningful connections with people.

Warning, there may be spoilers ahead.

ROSEWOOD: Cast Pictured L-R: Anna Konkle as TMI, Gabrielle Dennis as Pippy Rosewood, Morris Chestnut as Beaumont Rosewood, Jr., Jaina Lee Ortiz as Detective Villa, Lorraine Toussaint as Donna Rosewood and Domenick Lombardozzi as Captain Ira Hornstock in ROSEWOOD premiering Wednesday, September 23 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2015 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: Justin Stephens/FOX.

ROSEWOOD: Cast Pictured L-R: Anna Konkle as TMI, Gabrielle Dennis as Pippy Rosewood, Morris Chestnut as Beaumont Rosewood, Jr., Jaina Lee Ortiz as Detective Villa, Lorraine Toussaint as Donna Rosewood and Domenick Lombardozzi as Captain Ira Hornstock.

I’ll admit when I first saw the promo for Rosewood my initial response was to groan at the addition of yet another crime drama. There are so many police procedurals on television right now that I’ve actually started to dislike them. I did not have high hopes for Rosewood. But as I watched the pilot I found myself actually enjoying the show. It was funny, the characters were interesting and the writing was good. Sure it was using an old age formula we’ve seen a million times, two unlikely partners come together to solve crime, but it did it well. Very well.

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A lot of that had to do with Morris Chestnut who plays titular character Rosewood. I’m going to come out and say that Chestnut is amazing. From start to finish he oozes charisma and charm making it impossible not to like him. The best of him though is when he shows those little subtle hints of Rosewood’s vulnerability and fear, something which I hope we see more of in forthcoming episodes. He also has massive chemistry with everyone on screen. The playful relationship with his sister Pippy, played by Gabrielle Dennis, was fun to watch and brought a lot of humour to the show. But the undeniable sexual tension between him and Detective Villa, played by Jaina Lee Ortiz, is what really stole the episode. They made it look so effortless and I’m already rooting for Rosewood to win her over. Villa, by herself, is still a great character. We’ve seen the tough cop routine before but what makes her interesting is the obvious pain and grief she is still carrying from husband’s death. I’d like to see that explored more as the season progresses. But the character I loved most was Tara, played by Anna Konkle, the fiancée of Pippy and an employee at Rosewood’s lab. She was quieter than the other characters and yet made a real impression. Her quirkiness really shone through and made her stand out despite her lack of screen time. More of her and the always excellent Anthony Michael Hall in the future please.

ROSEWOOD: Morris Chestnut as Beaumont Rosewood, Jr. and Jaina Lee Ortiz as Detective Villa in the "Pilot" series premiere episode of ROSEWOOD airing Wednesday, Sept. 23 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2015 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: Jeff Daly/FOX.

ROSEWOOD: Morris Chestnut as Beaumont Rosewood, Jr. and Jaina Lee Ortiz as Detective Villa.

The lab at which Rosewood works was another highlight of the episode. It was high tech and the episode really showcased that. The scene where he examined the body was executed particularly well and it was very enjoyable to watch. But then again I found the whole episode of Rosewood enjoyable to watch.

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However the important question is with so many crime dramas on television how does Rosewood stand out from the crowd? It’s not enough to be a good show; we know that from the likes of Battle Creek and Backstrom last year. Both were high quality series and yet both were victims of an oversaturation of the genre. So what does Rosewood bring to the table that can sustain it past a first season? It doesn’t have any gimmick or a unique new spin on the formula like say midseason starter Lucifer does. It doesn’t have a big following from a movie like Minority Report and Limitless do. It doesn’t have a heap of action like The Player does. What it does have is a brilliant cast with lots of chemistry, and a good solid pilot to build from. But will that be enough? I hope so because judging from the first episode it’s going to be a great series.

Pilot Rating- 4/5

Categories: Reviews, TV

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