Reacher Series Premiere Review: A Fun Enough Crime Thriller
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Reacher On Prime Video Is An Fun Enough Crime Thriller – Review

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BY February 11, 2022

Reacher on Prime Video is a brand-new series based on best-selling novels. The drama features a badass soldier hero who gets caught up in the local corruption of a small town in America. The Reacher premiere episode does a great job of establishing the setting, lead character and the story. While also separating itself from the other live-action iterations of this franchise. Check out my review of the new series based on the Jack Reacher books to see if this new show is worth your time.

Please note: this Reacher series premiere review will contain spoilers for the episode and its ending.

What Is Reacher on Prime Video?

Reacher Series Premiere review prison. Image via Prime Video.

The Reacher premiere episode sees Alan Ritchson as Jack Reacher, a mysterious man strolling through a small town in Georgia, only for the local cops to arrest him for murder. The titular main character is the appeal of this show. And the show itself comes from the best-selling novel series from Lee Child. The series has currently 26 novels published, all featuring the main character of Jack Reacher. Child’s story sees the character as an amazingly skilled military man who leaves the army and roams the nation, picking up odd jobs and solving crimes. He is an avenging angel, getting caught up in others’ business while helping people and kicking butt. It’s a very commercial story, something that Child himself admits to regularly.

The character of Reacher himself is unique. Unlike a James Bond, or other hero tropes, Reacher is almost always reluctant to get involved. He is a hero who dabbles in the grey when it comes to the brutality with which he dispenses his enemies. A strong silent type whose allure is his many flaws. At least, in one iteration.

The Reacher TV Series Is Not the First Live-Action Version

Reacher Series Premiere review jail Image via Prime Video.

Two of Child’s novels became a successful movie franchise with Tom Cruise playing Reacher. Cruise played the character in a very grumpy type of demeanour. The movies themselves were great for their riveting story and layered drama coupled with incredible action sequences. Of course, because Tom Cruise was a part of it. So the Reacher premiere episode had to do a lot to invest audiences, given its’ not the first time we see the character in live-action.

Reacher on Prime Video stars Alan Ritchson as Reacher. Ritchson is a very different actor and person compared to Cruise. The differences in physicality, stature and their takes on the character, are just as different. While I don’t focus on these differences too much in this Reacher series premiere review, it’s still worth noting.

The Reacher Premiere Episode Review Is All About the Main Character

Reacher Series Premiere review detective. Image via Prime Video.

The premiere episode of Reacher starts great! Ritchson plays the character as brooding and physically intimidating person arrested for a small-town murder. While he’s cleared almost immediately, the lead detective recruits his former Military investigator skills to help with the case. It’s a flimsy premise that is the biggest thing that sticks out of this show so far. Even though the detective asks for Reacher’s help, he also instructs his subordinates not to answer his questions, but then also lets them answer. Why Reacher sticks around despite never wanting to, doesn’t get fully addressed. Until the end of the premiere episode at least, when you discover the murder victim is his brother.

But despite these inconsistencies, Reacher on Prime Video is still an engaging watch. The story is interesting enough to keep watching the episode. It’s a strong premiere, I’ll give it that. Ritchson’s Reacher is a bit more charming, while also a lot more wooden. Ritchson (Titans) does a great job of blending the stoic nature of Reacher, with the confidence of a man with his background. But when he does break a bit, it almost feels out of character.

Reacher Series Premiere Spoiler Review

Reacher on prime video Ritchson Image via Prime Video.

On the whole, Reacher works as a compelling crime thriller that keeps you guessing. The character works as a wrench thrown into the works of the criminal element of the show that the good guys are trying to find. But it’s not without its flaws. It’s a show that’s a little careless at times. The first scene has a police officer realizing that there’s no trace of Reacher online. She comments that the only proof that Reacher exists, is that he’s sitting in the interrogation room. Followed immediately by superior rambling off all of Reacher’s military achievements and personal life details. So, they clearly have his records and proof of his existence.

Reacher on Prime Video warrants a watch. It’s a light and breezy crime thriller that doesn’t get too serious. And when the action hits, it’s very exciting. The story is simple enough to follow along, and the characters are interesting and have enough chemistry to keep watching.

Reacher is available on Prime Video starting February 4, 2022.

Are you excited for another Reacher live-action adaptation? Let me know what you thought about the Cruise-version after this, in the comments below.

Featured image via Prime Video.

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Shah Shahid is an entertainment writer, movie critic (so he thinks), host of the Split Screen Podcast (on Apple Podcasts & everywhere else) and filmy father on a mission to educate his girls on decades of film history. Armed with uncontrollable sarcasm and cautious optimism, Shah loves discussing film, television and comic book content until his wife’s eyes glaze over. So save her by engaging him on his own blog at BlankPageBeatdown.com or on Twitter @theshahshahid.

          

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