In 2016, 3 things seem to keep propagating as fast as a bad case of ebola, and all of them are as annoying as having to fart whilst out for a spacewalk in your EVA-suit. Every week at least one of these three things happen : either a new Kardashian pops up somewhere doing something unimportant and instagrams it ,or a new case of Zika-fever pops up or finally (and most likely) a new CSI/NCIS spin-off premieres on some channel.
I mean seriously, the last spin-off, CSI/NCIS New Orleans should have been the one to finish them all. No, that’s no joke, there is an entire (sub)series dedicated to crime solving in New Orleans. What marketing genius over at the studios woke up one day and thought “You know what I bet people want to see? Crimes being solved in New Orleans”. New fucking Orleans. I mean come on.
Aside from all that personal hatred towards TV shows that take science as seriously as Charlie Sheen does marriage vows , I also don’t really think that’s it’s the best idea having a team of overly-caffeinated creative people devise up all kinds of ways for killing someone and pulling it off. What they’ve basically been doing for the past 15 years is create the perfect “how-to” book for killing people. Don’t know how to whack someone? Watch one of the gazillion episodes of these dreadful series, and you will not only have inspiration for your future murder/perp-ship but also the obvious answer as to what you shouldn’t do in order to get caught.
In the wake of ISIS-supporters spreading more quickly than herpes at a community college dorm, I just think it would be wise not to supply them with endless inspiration to fuck shit up,really.
But there’s nothing to fear with this latest installment in the never-ending series of catastrophes that is the CSI/NCIS franchise. I endured the first half of the pilot, just for the sake of actually knowing what I’m talking about, before proceeding with wrecking it afterwards. (I do enough wrecking without knowing what I’m talking about at work, thank you very much.)
So yes, I exposed myself to the very high risk of terminal brain trauma by watching the pilot episode.
Strike I : The very first observation – which seems however to be transmutable to all shows, not just this one – is that these people look too damn good to be doing their respective jobs. If people really looked like that in any department of any governmental agency, their employment numbers would skyrocket, even if it were the sanitation department. Everyone would work for the government. Seriously, people would just commit random crimes for the odd chance of being questioned for hours by some sexy detective. The pilot also embraces all the well-established cliches and patterned stereotypes as to who has what job in the task-force. You thought the fat guy with headphones and the metal band t-shirt was the boss? No you, didn’t. TV has conditioned you after all these years into a docile ‘the blonde, tough looking one must be the boss’ mindset. You know it. Pavlov would be proud.
Let’s see who joined the party :
- Old, rundown double-divorced detective with 3 mortgages, driving a busted Crown Vic and who lacks even the most basic computational skills, despite the fact that he is breathing and working in 2016? Check.
- Young, ex-marine-type random dude ‘who has been through and seen some shit in the war’, and who is ready for some action as much as he is trigger-happy? Check. (BTW Is that DAWSON? Dude has been recycled more than prenups in the Sheen household)
- Sexy young female programmer who types everything faster than it appears on the screen? Check.
- Overweight, badly-groomed, Cheeto-dust covered ‘computer genius’ with type II diabetes , bad blood-pressure and a healthy dose of sarcasm and ditto heavy metal band shirts? Check.
- Bitchy old lady-boss in pantsuits, who doesn’t really understand computers or how they work but thinks shouting random orders (preferably in a haphazard manner) will just ‘get done’ by the computer? Check. She’s totally the type of person who would actually press onto the monitor with their fat finger to indicate you to ‘click on that’.Every single one of the clichés is present, the gang’s all here.
Strike II : name me one police force in the world that has the budget to create precincts and offices that look like they were hand-designed by Philippe Starck. Seriously. All the glass, blue neons, and beeping sounds are just absurd, not too mention impractical. It looks like a spaceship on Star Trek. All of those offices are also as dark and as a well-lit Vietnamese cave at night. Come on. Try finding your stapler or post-it notes in there.
Strike III : The name. CSI : Cyber? Really? That’s the best you could come up with? I can imagine the way that conversation went ‘Well, it’s about computers…and stuff’. -I know! Let’s call it CYBER. Sounds groovy and will appeal to the millennials and web 1998 generation.’ Seriously, they chose cyber. Cyber what? Cybercafé? That café-concept that worked for a brief stint in the early 2000’s but is now only to be found in the most remote African villages where they serve as base of operations for Nigerian scams? Come on, they could’ve come up with something better. Anything would have been better.
But perhaps the most annoying thing about crime shows that have some kind of computer department to solve all of their problems is the acute lack of realism that is always coupled with having such a computer unit. A few gripes I have with so-called, self-proclaimed computer geniuses, who would be about as qualified for the job as Apple geniuses are for theirs :
- YOU CANT ENHANCE A PICTURE A GAZILLION TIMES IF YOU HAVE NO BASE RESOLUTION : It’s mathematical really. Seeing someone’s eye color in the rear-view mirror of a car through tinted glass? No problem, an ATM’s security camera was totally made for that. I can’t spot my house number from Google StreetView but I guess the other thing’s totally fine right? Also, stop yelling ‘ENHANCE MORE’ and pressing your fat finger in the screen bitch.
- WHERE ARE THE MICE AT ? Not a single computer desk has a mouse. Have we suddenly made a leap either 30 years in the future or 30 in the past? Where dem mice at? Everything – even something as basically simple as opening a file – is always done by typing something very quickly for a second and then BLASTING the ‘enter’ key. There is literally not a single program that has been made to work like that since the 1980’s. That’s why they invented mice and graphic user interfaces in the first place. To avoid having to type goddamn command lines every goddamn time.
- BUY BIGGER SCREENS : If your agency can front the cash for a Starck-designed building, surely they can splurge on a larger display too, so you can stop bunching up behind the ‘computer genius’. You look like a bunch of 14 year old growing up in the 90’s and who are about to witness their first pair of boobs loading on your friend’s computer while mom is out shopping. Seriously.
So no, I don’t really fear this show. This will not provide inspiration to a would-be terrorist of any kind whatsoever, unless they’re plotting an attack based on typecasting and scientific détournement.
The only real risk in watching this show is a brain haemorrhage.
(I could go on for days, but it has been brought to my attention that people don’t read long blog posts anymore, hence twitter)