Monday, March 16, 2009

First Impressions: Kings

The Cast of Kings

Can something be grandiose and boring at the same time? If so, than that can sum up Kings. The show has a look and feel like nothing currently on television and a scope not seen since Rome. But it is hard to not think the two hour premiere could have fit everything important into one hour to kill off some of the lulls.

Ian McShane of KingsThe show is a modern day retelling of the story of David (Spoiler Alert for the heathens out there: He goes on to become king) set in a parallel universe and the fake country Gilboa (isn’t that where Anne Hathaway is a princess?) who is currently at war with their neighbors, the equally bad named Gath. In Gilboa, there is monarchy les by King Silas played by the overbearing Ian McShane (Agent Cody Banks) who lives a tangled life; he marries into money to set up his kingdom (of whom his brother-in-law is the main profiteer of the war); his daughter cares too much about his subjects and continually lobbies for better health care for them; his son is a royal version of Paris Hilton, right down to the parting and having sex with dudes. And of course there is the mistress with a kid of her own.

I am pretty sure this is Mr. BostonOn the front line of the war is David Sheppard (who I cannot confirm is Mr. Boston from I Love New York, but I’m pretty sure it is him), an awe shucks country boy that can fix anything, including, apparently, wars. He gets tangled up with the king when he rescues the prince in one of the more laughable scenes as the soldiers of Gath acted like enemies is a crappy nineties video game. And as the preview promised, David takes the king up on his offer of half his kingdom by getting a dance with the princess.

Being based off of the Bible, there are plenty of religious references, many coming from then king’s personal guru, who naturally is not fond of the wars he wages and seems to be drawn to David (whom he creepily touches a few times in the first hour). And like most prophets he takes in vague terms and makes little sense.

Kings is ambitious but sometimes too ambitious for its own good. It has yet give a good enough back-story to the king and Gilboa, it is easy to compare it to America but under the surface seems to have little to do with this country besides New York City being the obvious standing for the faux the capital right down to Central Park overlooking the kings office. And the storyline of being in and out of war multiple times in a two hour frame was a little hard to follow. But once the show finds its footing, it could end up being the most compelling show on television.

Kings airs Sundays at 8:00 on NBC. You can stream current episodes at You can currently download the two hour pilot of Kings for free on iTunes and it is also free on Amazon Video on Demand (see below):

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