Give It a Chance: ‘Breaking In’

Every year, without fail we are subjected to a plethora of shoddy TV series and network hopefuls, and almost every year these shows fail. Low ratings, terrible stories, or zero network backing are the main reasons for a show to fail, and sometimes, it’s just not fair. Ask Doc about Terriers and you’ll understand what I’m talking about.

So I figured to try to fight this yearly slump of terrible shows and apathetic viewers, it makes sense to highlight the different series that I think are worth their time slot, in order to make it easier for you to weed through the crap and find the gold. So that brings us to the first show I encourage you to try out this season.

Breaking In stars Bret Harrison (Reaper), Odette Annable (who used to go by Odette Yustman in Cloverfield and The Unborn), and Christian Slater, who really had nowhere else to go but TV. Breaking In tells the story of Cam (Harrison), a high-profile computer hacker who is selected to work at ‘Contra Security’, a company that specializes in testing out their client’s security systems, hence the clever name of the show. Now why should you watch this show above all other newcomers this season?

Team dynamics pretty much says it all.

You have your resident nerd gadget guy Cash (Alphonso McAuley), the safe cracker and possible love interest Melanie (Annable), her douchebag boyfriend Dutch (played awesomely by Michael Rosenbaum of Smallville fame), and their master of disguise Josh (Trevor Moore from The Whitest Kids You Know) all under the watchful eye of the ever-present man with the plan Oz (a character that really plays to the strengths of Christian Slater).

So every episode the team is tasked with Breaking In to a secured location, whether it’s a museum, a bank, or Oz’s ex-wife’s house. That is actually the smallest part of the show, as Cam is usually working through all the drama of being a new guy with a crush on the girl who has a douchey boyfriend. Sounds pretty standard, but when you mix this cast of characters together it really sells the laughs.

And laugh you will, especially if you are a fan of random nerd cultural references like I am. Cash drops something new every episode, whether it’s his love of Star Wars, his n00b pranks, or his infatuation with “the hottest girl in the world”; the dorky Asian who works at Contra. You don’t need to be aware of these tidbits to get the humor, because something else hilarious is coming right up after. Dutch (Rosenbaum) is the clueless preppy loser who thinks he’s top shit, like when he’s trying to impress Mel’s Dad he decides to wear underwear. Or in discussing fine art he rips down his shirt, revealing a tattoo of Tattoo (Fantasy Island), asking whose minds he’s just blown. Josh hasn’t really hit big in the series yet, but I expect good things from him, considering his hilarity on TWKYK. So while all the characters really add comedy to the show, this team is really nothing without their boss.

Now I know when I say Christian Slater, not a lot of people are going to be jumping for joy. Sure, he used to kick a lot of ass, but I haven’t really seen him in anything good for a long time, which is what proved to be such a shock when I found myself looking forward to his screen time. Oz is a conniving, manipulative, hilarious, big picture kind of guy, and he always has a plan two steps ahead of his team to get HIS desired results, whether that benefits the team or not.

In the most recent episode, the team engages in an office wide Nerf fight of epic proportions, only ending when Oz shows up with a bow and arrow, wondering why he can’t play as well. Or when he needs to force Caminto playing along as team leader, he offers him a candy, which is of course housing a tracking device for him to keep easy tabs. Oz is the ultimate in bosses you don’t want to mess with, not because he’ll kill you but because he will find away to frame you for a crime, drain your financial resources, cause your parents to hate you, and then sleep with your wife, never calling her again. Oz is awesome, and Slater really plays him well.

The pacing of the show is fast yet fluid, and it doesn’t bog itself down with overreaching storylines or in trying to take itself too seriously. Breaking In knows exactly what type of show it wants to be, and it’s pulling it off pretty damn well. So in a rare hit for the networks, I advise you to check out Breaking In on Fox on Wednesday so check your local listings. You’ll laugh, you’ll love, you’ll cringe, and you’ll be left wanting more.

Trust me… Give It a Chance…

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