TV Week

David and Goliath, With a Soapy Spin

Sunday, March 15, 2009

"Kings," Sundays at 8 p.m. on NBC

Basic story: David Shepherd (Chris Egan) is on the front lines as his country battles the neighboring nation of Gath. When several of his fellow soldiers are taken hostage, David goes Rambo and risks his life on a solo -- and unauthorized -- mission to save them. Turns out that was a pretty good career move, because one of the POWs was the king's son. Soon, David's being wined and dined at the castle. He catches the eye of the king's fiery daughter (naturally) and is promoted and reassigned to a cushy job in the pristine capital city of Shiloh. But all is not what it seems. For even though King Silas Benjamin (Ian McShane) promises much to David, the monarch can't be trusted.

What it faces: The premiere is two hours, but the hour-long show normally will face "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" on ABC, "The Amazing Race 14" on CBS and the comedy block of "The Simpsons" and "King of the Hill" on Fox.

What you'll love: The cast is led by McShane, who won a Golden Globe for his work on "Deadwood." Egan is quite easy on the eyes, and Allison Miller is lovely as the king's daughter. Also, Michael Green of "Heroes" is an executive producer.

What you won't: The acting at times is overdone, and some of the pivotal plot moments come across as downright hokey. (Watch for the fluttering-butterflies scene.)

Bottom line: Could be interesting to see whether this drama morphs into a moth or a butterfly.

-- Debra Leithauser

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