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Monday, 17 July 2017 17:30

Take Me to the Pilots '17: The CW's 'Valor'

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[I'll remind you at the top of every single one of these: These entries are not reviews. They're gut reactions to not-for-air pilots that could change in big and small ways between now and September or October or midseason.

Full reviews will come then. They'll be longer. And more carefully considered. The opinions may even change. Who knows?]

Show:Valor (The CW) The Pitch: "Rah-Rah Military Drama Broadcast Networks Are Convinced Viewers Want: The CW Edition" Quick Response: Not gonna lie. This is fascinating. Valor is like no show currently on The CW and no show The CW has done in my memory and, if nothing else, it's bad for an astounding number of different reasons. The best way I could describe it is if somebody decided to do Young Doctors in Love as Young Soldiers in Love, but didn't realize Young Doctors in Love was a spoof and attempted a deadly serious approach to the military in which each and every actor looks and acts like they just stepped out of a second rate CW drama (not first rate, because I love a first rate CW drama). So you've got sweaty, buff, wooden acting all around — the show's best performances are Matt Barr in One Tree Hill and Christina Ochoa in the current Syfy dramedy Blood Drive — but then they're dropping real country names and military references like Bowe Bergdahl as if to give it contemporary resonance, but then there's a big conspiracy that's confusing only because the show seems to think it's so gripping and I can't even pick it apart in a way that makes me curious about how the truth might unfold.

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