The Office only ended last year, but I’m not sure I’ll ever see Rainn Wilson as anything other than Dwight Schrute. It won’t be for a lack of effort, though, as Fox is getting ready to splash Wilson’s surly detective all over TV screens this winter in Backstrom, which you can get a new glimpse of below.
Assuming the music cues within the show itself don’t hover as closely to the punchlines as they do in this trailer, Backstrom could be an interesting early entry in 2015 TV. Wilson certainly shifts a certain amount of weight as a genius law enforcement professional. There’s a definite lack of sheen to his Everett Backstrom than those present on the brainiacs in Sherlock and Luther. He’s a rat-faced podiatrist, which is apparently the kind of thing that can get you slapped into the middle of next week. (Fox shows are always lucky to make it into next week in some form.)
Based on the novels by Swedish novelist and criminologist Leif G.W. Persson, Backstrom is partly a character study of this excess of a man who makes efforts to change his unsavory ways, usually to no avail. After five years of being removed from his former job for offensive behavior, Backstrom returns to a leadership position as the head of Portland’s newly created Special Crimes Unit. It’s a bit of a culture shock for him, but it also affects the lives of everyone around him in different ways.
His copper coworkers and co-stars include Dennis Haysbert (The Unit), Genevieve Angelson (House of Lies), and Kristoffer Polaha (Ringer), Beatrice Rosen (Pay Day) and Page Kennedy (Blue Mountain State). We can probably expect every single of these people to get taken down repeatedly in each episode. Keep the quips chuckle-worthy, and I can handle a stubbled douchebag.
While it’s no guarantee that Fox will repeat the same kind of love, Backstrom was developed by the long-running Bones’ creator Hart Hanson, who’s also worked on quite a few series and films before that. Backstrom was originally a CBS pilot before they passed on it, when it obviously ended up at Fox. Too hip for – snort – CBS?
Will this offbeat comedy have what it takes to make it through the year scathing but unscathed? We’ll find out at some point in early 2015. Check out the previously released Backstrom trailer on the next page and let us know what you think.