Channel 10, 8.30pm Sunday
Imagine if you will a new courtroom drama TV series with a courtroom but no drama between the prosecution and defence teams … instead the jury process is front and centre, but not in a way we’ve seen before.
Channel 10 wheeled out its new Sunday night flagship show “Bull” last week, with Michael Weatherly playing triple PhD psychologist and jury specialist Dr Jason Bull.
Weatherly, of NCIS (and Dark Angel) fame, leads a high-tech team of analysts and biometric nerds – and even a costumer – who set out to ‘game’ the jury for a good result.
The upshot is the elite team sees how well different versions of the truth play out against a dummy jury, picked for its profiled match with the real jury.
Bull is not interested in getting to the truth as much as seeing how jury members will respond to … dare we say it … alternative facts.
Yes, it’s as if the PR types got hold of the reins of the justice system and were able to spin whatever story sounded good … with immediate feedback from their hand-picked ‘focus group’ – and the verdict measured by twitches, temperature changes and sideways looks.
It’s no LA Law or Boston Legal. But if you were a fan of “Lie to me” you may find this one appealing … or if you’re a fan of Donald Trump.
Weatherly dominates an otherwise ho-hum cast. He’s smarter than Sherlock Holmes – perhaps too smart – never rattled by competing views or damaging revelations, mainly because there aren’t any.
In the ‘post-truth’ pro-Trump world this kind of thing may hold a passing interest, but there’s only so much biometric gimmickry and smugness you can stand in an hour-long package.
In short – without the courtroom drama and other strong characters – it’s just too much bull.