Review of Limitless – the TV show…Pilot
Stars: Jake McDorman, Brian Sinclair, Bradley Cooper, Eddie Morra, Jennifer Carpenter, Hill Harper
Reviewed by Ramon Mejia
Limitless is a television series ordered by CBS set to premier on September 22. The show is based on the movie of the same name that came out in 2011 starring Bradley Cooper. The TV series revolves around Brian Finch, played by Jake McDorman, who gets his hands on the same pill Bradley Cooper did in the movie NZT-48 with similar results. Brian, a down on his luck musician, finds he can now instantly recall and connect all the things he’s ever read, seen, or heard. We got an early look at the pilot and boy are we excited.
Normally, television adaptations of movies don’t do very well. They can never extend over a full TV season the same level of excitement or drama that an encapsulated 90-120 minute movie can. Limitless may be the show that breaks that rule. The pilot episode brings everything we loved from the movie and adds an episodic detective element that we hope will be the magic sauce that makes the show endure.
(Some Spoilers ahead)
In the pilot episode Brian Finch, played by Jake McDorman, is heading into his 30’s and realizes that he’s not doing much with his life. He’s had a string of dead end jobs and the only thing he had passion for, his band, is falling apart as the members get older and quit. Additionally, his dad, the one person who always believed in Brian, gets sick with a hard to diagnose illness. Down on his luck he runs into an old friend that used to be in his band that now works in investment banking. This old friends feels bad for Brain and slips him a pill and promises that it will change everything. That pill turns out to be NZT-48.
For the next 12 hours Brian remembers everything he’s ever seen, hear, or read. He takes a task given to him by his temp job that’s estimated to take 2 weeks and completes it in 2 hours. He plays music like never before, becomes a temporary chess master, and even figures out what’s making his dad sick. Something his doctors have been trying to do for months. Unfortunately, after the 12 hours expires Brian has a major brain crash. Looking to experience this cognitive explosion again Brain goes to his friends place only to find it ransacked and his friend dead. Taking the one NZT-48 pill he could find Brian must figure out who killed his friend, how to arrange treatment for his father, and how to get the FBI off his case now that they think he’s a murderer.
The FBI agents tasked with finding Brian are Rebecca Harris (played by Jennifer Carpenter) and Spellman Boyle (played by Hill Harper). You might remember Jennifer Carpenter as the Dexter’s detective sister Debra Morgan.
It just may be the interactions between FBI agent Rebecca Harris and Brian that make the show succeed. The TV show takes an excellent premise from the movie Limitless and combines it with the detective drama of shows like Bones, Castle, and Sherlock. We hope it’s enough to fill an entire season of good episodes.