PLEASE CLICK TO DONATE TO OUR SITE!!!!
Primetime Show Reviews
season premiere by Suzanne
On TNT Tuesdays, starting June 22 at 10/9c
I like this show, but I don't know yet if it's going to be one
that I regularly watch. The pace is a little slow. They worked really hard on
painting a picture of the sleepy old bluesy city of Memphis, even if they did
shoot most of it in New Orleans (which is a bit different if you ask the locals
of either city).
Jason Lee plays Dwight, a detective, whose father was also a
detective, that died when he was young. Hence, he's very devoted to both his job
and his mother. Music is his other love, and he spends his off-hours singing
like Elvis. His new boss from the suburbs is Alfre Woodard. Both stars are
In the first episode, Dwight discovers an old lady that has been
abused and is not communicating. She turns out to be this old DJ that he
listened to back when he was a boy and discovering Elvis. Now, maybe I wasn't
paying attention very well, or they didn't make it clear, but Jason Lee is way
too young to have been a boy back when Elvis was big. The timeline was a bit
confusing to me. Otherwise, though, it was a fine episode.
Here is more info about the show:
Blues Music, Southern Charm and Crime Make a Soulful Blend in
TNT’s New Drama Series MEMPHIS BEAT, Starring Jason Lee
MEMPHIS BEAT set to premiere Tuesday, June 22, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT)
There’s a new sound coming to TNT this summer. It’s the bluesy, guitar-laced
sound of MEMPHIS BEAT, TNT’s soulful original series about a Memphis police
detective starring Jason Lee (My Name Is Earl) and Alfre Woodard (Three Rivers)
and co-starring DJ Qualls (Hustle & Flow). The drama series is produced by
George Clooney and Grant Heslov’s Smokehouse Pictures and Warner Horizon
Television and is slated to premiere Tuesday, June 22, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT).
The show centers on Dwight Hendricks (Lee), a quirky Memphis police detective
with an intimate connection to the city, a passion for blues music and a close
relationship with his mother. He is “the keeper of Memphis,” a Southern
gentleman who is protective of his fellow citizens, reverential of the city’s
history and deeply rooted in its blues music scene.
Despite his impeccable instincts as a detective, Dwight’s loose, relaxed style
of police work rubs his demanding new boss, Lt. Tanya Rice (Woodard), the wrong
way. But Dwight may eventually win her over to a Memphis state of mind,
especially when he takes the stage at his favorite hangout to perform a
legendary song or two.
MEMPHIS BEAT co-stars DJ Qualls as Davey Sutton, a uniform cop who considers
himself to be Dwight’s protégé. Also starring are Celia Weston (Junebug) as
Dwight’s effervescent mother; Sam Hennings (Saving Grace) as Charlie White, aka
Whitehead, Dwight’s seasoned, hypertensive partner; Leonard Earl Howze
(Barbershop) as Reginald Greenback, a fellow detective struggling to make ends
meet with two teenage daughters; and Abraham Benrubi (ER) as Sgt. JC Lightfoot,
an officer who uses Chickasaw tribal wisdom in his police work.
MEMPHIS BEAT was created by Liz W. Garcia (Cold Case) and Joshua Harto (The Dark
Knight), who also wrote the first two episodes. Harto, who grew up in the South
and has spent a lot of time with his country-musician grandfather, sees the
show’s setting as a chance to spotlight one of America’s great cities. “Memphis
has been largely forgotten in film and TV today,” he says. “It’s where the blues
and Johnny Cash and Elvis came from. It’s where Martin Luther King was
assassinated and where Isaac Hayes and Aretha Franklin were born and raised.
It’s the perfect blend of drama and humor for our show.”
Music is just as vital to MEMPHIS BEAT as its unique characters, drama and
humor. “Music is a huge part of this show,” Garcia says. “It has to be. You
can’t live in Memphis and not have your life steeped in music. The city has a
To get that perfect Memphis feel, the production team approached noted blues
singer/songwriter Keb’ Mo’. He will provide original compositions and
performances for the show to supplement classic Memphis tracks.
MEMPHIS BEAT is executive-produced by Clooney, Heslov, Garcia, Harto, John
Fortenberry (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia) and Scott Kaufer (Boston Legal).
Sean Whitesell (House M.D.) and Smokehouse Pictures’ Abby Wolf-Weiss are
co-executive producers. The pilot was directed and executive-produced by Emmy®
nominee Clark Johnson (The Shield). Harto and Garcia are a husband-and-wife
team. Harto is also an actor.
Warner Horizon Television is one of the entertainment industry’s fastest-growing
television companies, specializing in the creation of scripted series for the
cable marketplace, and primetime reality series for both network and cable.
Founded in 2006, this second production entity allows the Warner Bros.
Television Group to expand its programming offerings and explore creative
options made possible under a new business model. WHTV is producing more than a
dozen series for broadcast and cable networks in 2009-2010.
Smokehouse Pictures was formed in 2006 by George Clooney and Grant Heslov.
Clooney and Heslov co-wrote the critically acclaimed 2004 film Good Night, and
Good Luck., which earned six Academy Award® nominations including Best Original
Screenplay, as well as a Best Director nomination for Clooney and a Best Picture
nomination for Heslov. Heslov and Clooney also produced K-Street and Unscripted,
both for HBO. Under their Smokehouse shingle, Clooney and Heslov produced the
feature films Leatherheads, The Men Who Stare at Goats, and forthcoming film The
American, which will be released in fall 2010.
TNT, one of cable’s top-rated networks, is television’s destination for drama
and home to such original series as the acclaimed and highly popular detective
drama The Closer, starring Kyra Sedgwick; Men of a Certain Age, with Ray Romano,
Andre Braugher and Scott Bakula; Saving Grace, starring Holly Hunter; HawthoRNe,
with Jada Pinkett Smith; Leverage, starring Timothy Hutton; and Dark Blue,
starring Dylan McDermott; the upcoming Rizzoli & Isles, starring Angie Harmon
and Sasha Alexander; Memphis Beat, with Jason Lee; and Southland, from
Emmy®-winning producer John Wells (ER). TNT also presents such powerful dramas
as Bones, Supernatural, Las Vegas, Law & Order, CSI: NY, Cold Case and Numb3rs;
broadcast premiere movies; compelling primetime specials, such as the Screen
Actors Guild Awards®; and championship sports coverage, including NASCAR and the
NBA. TNT is available in high-definition.
Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner company, creates and programs
branded news, entertainment, animation and young adult media environments on
television and other platforms for consumers around the world.
Back to the Main Reviews Page
Back to the Main Primetime TV Page