Charlie's Angels Series Premiere Review: A Criminal Remake

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I want to like Charlie's Angels. I really do. I was a little too young to catch the original when it aired, but I did watch it in reruns growing up. It was campy, silly, fun. Gorgeous women kicking butt and solving mysteries. How can you go wrong with that?  Well...

This new version has some fatal flaws. In "Angel with a Broken Wing," we meet the new Angels and I'm turned off before we've even begun. Not by the actresses. They're all beautiful but by the characters.

The original Angels were police officers who, given the sexism of the time, were given menial jobs such as glorified secretary and meter maid. Seeing no opportunity to do real police work, they left and went to work as private detectives for Charlie Townsend.

Eve vs. Abby

But, as that scenario will no longer play in modern times, these new Angels are criminals - and I have a real problem with that. Abby's the bored rich girl turned cat burglar, Eve was an orphan turned car thief, and Kate is the worst of all, a dirty cop. Because I consider dirty cops the lowest of the low, I'm finding it hard to get past that one. I'm hoping we'll get some back story soon to give us the reasons behind her disgraceful past.

So far, Eve is the most appealing. Played by the gorgeous and likable Minka Kelly, at least she had the hard knocks life of an orphan to explain her path to thievery. I'm thankful for that because Kelly is hard not to like.

Bosley has certainly gotten a complete make over. He's no longer the balding, overweight uncle type looking after Charlie's girls. Now they've made him this hot stud and I feel as though the character would be more interesting if he were gay. Just my opinion.

Unfortunately, even Bosley has a criminal past. He's a high tech guru and hacker who hates the term. He stole millions from peoples' tax returns one penny at a time. Smart? Yes, but as with everyone else in this remake, it certainly calls his character into question.

Most of the team seems to be here because working for Charlie Townsend is a better option than going to prison. It breeds a particular loyalty to their boss but it isn't as commendable as the premise of the original.

Let's move on to the plot. Is it great? No. It's fluff. I did think it was cute that the human trafficker was stabbed with a wooden angel. During the party scene, our Angels masquerade as servers in red sequined devil costumes. And Abby should substitute for Spiderman on his days off given the way she climbs a building.

I wished they had taken more time assimilating Eve into this crew. They trust her much too quickly and the moment Charlie says she's part of the team she's completely accepted. If they'd made her acceptance a little more difficult I think it could have been more entertaining.

The best scene took place near the end when Bosley tried to convince Eve to work as an Angel. It was the most real moment of the show and the first scene where I actually felt something for these characters. Second best was when Eve took down our villain with a spinning Corvette.  I'll admit, that was kind of cool.

The worst scene: the Angels' reaction to Gloria's murder. Abby's crying made me cringe and Bosley barely moved. The car bomb just didn't pack the emotional punch it should have.

There's lots of girl power here and I'm all for that. That's half the reason why I watch most anything Joss Whedon ever does. Of course, the other half is that his writing is in a whole other league than anything you'll see here. And for all of the Angel high kicks and martial arts moves, none of it left me satisfied.

I'm torn because I want to like this remake. Yes, it is cheesy and predictable, but so was the original and I have fond memories. Unfortunately, I just don't have the love for these characters and I'm not feeling enough of the fun. Maybe that will come with time. We'll see. We'll hope.

Review

Editor Rating: 3.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 2.5 / 5.0 (123 Votes)

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.

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There’s an old saying that goes: THERE’S NOTHING LIKE THE ORGINAL. This is (so) true with the 2011 version of “Charlie’s Angels�. All in all the premier episode was alright – but it will NEVER become as p[opular as the one from 1976. The main reason for the original’s success was of course Farrah Fawcett. Nobody will ever be able to replace her. She was one in a million – now wait, make that one in a billion. Rachael Taylor doesn’t even come close. I will still watch the show however -but- it will NEVER be like the original angels. Sorry Charlie!

Farsia2010

oh and i absolutely agree that they should not have made them into full blown criminals, the movies of charlie's angels put a modern enough spin on how they became angels without turning them into bad guys. they were just kind of lost souls without a specific purpose (except lucy liou's character but still). but i do like that bosley kicks ass now, and i disagree, making him gay would be too cliche, plus it would leave all the WOMEN without a man to lust ofter. And i really don't like the blond one, i don't know her name, she just seems so cold and fake for me. (i mean the actress not the character) this show will never be as good as the old one or as exciting and fun as the two movies were.

Farsia2010

i am not sure if i like it, sort of both like and dislike at the same time.
all charlie voice thing sounded cheesy for me, i like the visual and action scenes but the dialogues were cliche and cheesy for me.
i am going to give it a couple of more tries but i am not sure where it's going for me

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It was a little bit soapy for my liking. The scene after the car bombing was a bit too over dramatic I felt but somehow still lacked that emotion. It's a shame because I was really hoping this show would do well. In a big Rachel Taylor fan and she's a great actress but this show doesn't really show that. There was also something a bit off with charlies voice which irritated me

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Was it suppose to be campy? Or was it just bad writing? Or was the acting really that bad? Terrible show. I don't think it will last, it will be gone by Christmas break.

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Watched it and found it to be really bad. Think ABC paid too much for the show. If next episode isn't any better it is goodbye for me. Also didn't like the voice of "Charlie" .

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My first thought was that the writing was terrible. I liked Minka Kelly on Friday Night Lights, but this was just bad. I have no idea if these women can act. There's no wit, no depth, no believable emotion. Ugh.

Youngnan

made it as far as the group hug after the bombing

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This show is really really bad in a really dreary way. You can't even enjoy how bad it is because it's too flat and dead to be bad in an interesting way. The first changes they need to make are new writers and a new director. All of the acting was terrible so I have to figure this has something to do with the director. Unless this show is completely revamped, it's an insult to ask people to watch it.

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Totally agree with the reviewer. I didn't even make it past the first 20 minutes. The acting is poor, the casting is second-rate (compared to the original - won't see any "Farrahs" emerge from this crew), and it was just generally boring. Why mess with the original, and I just don't get the "thing" with Minka Kelly. Maybe her appeal has rubbed off from her time with Jeter? Don't know, don't care. Will NOT be watching again! Too bad, because I usually love the things that Drew Barrymore produces, but this is NO "Grey Gardens"!!!

Charlie's Angels Season 1 Episode 1 Quotes

Abby: He's single, he's straight, and he has a life plan.
Gloria: Mixing Mojitos?

One fashion emergency is enough for tonight.

Abby
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