‘The Middleman’ may well save us all ... or at least our summer
Yeah, ABC Family. The network with programming so lame it makes The Disney Channel look like friggin' HBO has a serious contender for best series of the summer with this little charmer about a pair of sardonic, supernatural crime fighters.
Created by "Lost" producer/writer and awesome-name-haver Javier Grillo-Marxuach — and based on his own graphic novels — "The Middleman" recounts the exploits of a button-down, clean-cut man of mystery known only as The Middleman. Whenever something freaky happens — usually involving aliens, monsters or possibly Paula Abdul — The Middleman (Matt Keeslar) jumps in to clean things up. He's joined by slacker artist and cutie-patoot Wendy (Natalie Morales), who survived a monster attack during her temp job at a genetics lab, and reluctantly signed up for superhero duty.
The pilot — which premiered last night, but can be caught again Sunday at 9:30 p.m. — was a breezy, witty delight, with the rapid-fire dialogue of "Daisies" or "Gilmore Girls," cheesy, tongue-in-cheek special effects, and a hilariously nonsensical plot involving the Mafia, hyper-intelligent gorillas, and probably the best interrogation scene ever centered around a glass of milk.
If you can swallow your pride long enough to actually tune in ABC Family, you'll be pleasantly surprised by the quality on display with "The Middleman." As far as summer series go, you couldn't ask for more.
— Adam Reinhard, firstname.lastname@example.org