Lethal Weapon is half-cocked
The latest remake reboot victim is the classic movie Lethal Weapon which was released in 1987 starring Danny Glover and Mel Gibson. It’s the story of two detectives, Murtaugh, an older veteran cop and get other Riggs, who’s younger, more volatile and borderline suicidal. Over the course of the film the bond and even become a bit of a family bonding. It’s a critical acclaimed masterpiece which always found under the definition of the“Buddy Cop” gene
A group of executives at Fox with a lack of vision and creativity have decided to take this winning MOVIE formula and attempt to make it into a weekly network TV series. There are some movies that have a deeply rich world that do lend themselves to be explored in a TV series. Lethal Weapon is not one of them. It has three sequels that flush out and make a complete the story. It’s not dated where the story it hard to comprehend unless one grew up in the times. It’s very straightforward. In fact all a TV series can do is muddle and undercut what the films did.
A key element of Lethal Weapon is that Riggs is a widower. His wife’s recent death is what has caused him to become unhinged. It’s a very believable acceptable reasoning for actions throughout the first film. It’s the acceptance of Murtaugh’s family to his new partner that helps pull him out of it. A curve ball in the second film, SPOILER ALERT, it’s found out that the death of Riggs’ wife was no accident. Dollars to donuts this will be made into a vast conspiracy in the series vs an extra plot point that gave a bit of extra motivation that wasn’t even needed.
Another major problem with turning this movie into a TV series is casting. Damon Wayans Sr is playing Murtaugh. He is a comedic actor and is not, can not play the even keeled role. Lethal Weapon was not a comedy. It’s an action movie that has comedic elements. It’s one thing to have the heavy plot of the films interspersed with making light of the situation vs every week getting into hi jinks which will make it into a procedural, which we don’t need any more of on TV.
This, like many other cop shows of the past 5 years are paint by numbers. They are they type of show that as long as it’s not near the season finale or winter break, a viewer can drop in at any episode and follow along. If thsi was more of a serialized format with one over arching plot for the season, then maybe there could be an argument that I could wrap my head around. As it been presented via press release and first look trailer it’s going to have every episode with some scene with both characters flipping out because they just can’t get along.
At the end of the day, TV shows live and die by ratings. This can end up having multiple seasons and win all types of awards. Still will not justify it’s creation in my eyes. The Fox TV network has created and cancelled much better more creative shows than this which are still beloved by fans years later. My only hope at this point is that don’t sully the name and characters where I have to get into on of those bar debates that will me saying “No really check out the movie it’s way different.”