'Intelligence' on CBS: Thoughts on the premiere and how it compares to 'Almost Human'

Caught the premiere of Intelligence last night on CBS and am sad to say I was mildly disappointed.

Not to say I had very high expectations going into it. The whole premise of humans being privy to mass amounts of information/robot isn't exactly new… feels very Persons of Interest. Even in the first episode, it feels familiar. But maybe that's what they're going for…. it is CBS, after all.

Intelligence will undoubtedly be compared to Almost Human since in the batch of new shows, they are nearly identical in premise. Unlikely partners who have to work together, one having superhuman smarts. If that's the case, I worry about Intelligence. The pilot was no where near as good as AH, the chemistry between the partners wasn't as convincing and the move into a crime-of-the-week format seemed to happen immediately. AH on the other hand, used the first episode to set up the mythology of the show (which, sadly, they haven't revisited enough for my tastes). On Intelligence, the overarching mythology surrounding Sawyer Gabriel's wife (Ilana!!) seemed forced. Like they were mentioning it because they had to.

The one noticeable difference between AH and Intelligence is the tone, the latter being much darker. While I fault AH for relying too heavily on the procedural side and not revisiting the mythology from the first hour, at least it is fun to watch. As I watch Intelligence, I longed for shows like AH or SHIELD or Hawaii Five-O that mix action and fun. Sure, it's dark tone sets it apart… unfortunately I think Josh Holloway would really shine in a more relaxed atmosphere. The guy can throw a mean zinger - and a punch.

I also don't really understand what Gabriel's abilities are or how he got them or what their limits are. Can he read files on people? But how did he see that map? Can he read people's minds? It seems his 'intelligence' has no limits - which is discouraging. It also seems he has some sort of superhuman strength - also discouraging. Did I miss something in explaining his abilities? TV.com puts it best when they say:
"If he needs to open an electronic lock while in the custody of some nasty Pakistani militants, as was the case in the show's cold open, voila! [mind connects to Pakistani hideout Wi-fi, hacks Pakistani security controls] And then *click*, it's open! However, if he needs to open up some satellite imaging (i.e. Google Maps) to detect that he's running toward a dead-end cliff, as he also should have done later in the cold open, then he'll forget that he's got Google Glass in his brain."
Bright spots on the series will be Josh Holloway and Marg Helgenberger. And the one and only Fulton Reed if he (SPOILER ALERT!) sticks around as a bad guy. And of course, the twist and introduction of a possible adversary in the last minutes is promising.

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