Have you seen the program Common Law? Described as a crime-comedy drama, the summer series premiered on the USA Network on May 11. The show stars actors Michael Ealy and Warren Kole as homicide detectives in the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD). There’s just one problem being assigned as partners – they can’t stand each other.
This makes an interesting case in itself. Michael Ealy plays Travis Marks, a black detective who has a roving eye, a sense of humor and is good at his job. Warren Kole plays Wesley (Wes) Mitchell, who is white, was formerly a lawyer and is recently divorced. He’s more serious, doesn ’t understand Marks’ quips at times, and just wants to get the job done.
Though the series themes take place in Los Angeles, the actual location is New Orleans, La. In real life due to the excessive changes made recently by the United States Attorney General on the New Orleans Police Department, the program could be identical in a true life situation.
Since the partners have to solve crimes and cover each other’s back when needed, their police captain (played by actor Jack McGee) orders them to attend a “couples therapy” session. The purpose: to respect each other’s differences, to resolve their conflicts, confront their demons and work better together. The required therapy session is run by Dr. Ryan, described as a “tough-as-nails therapist” played by actress Sonya Walger.
In last week’s episode of “Odd Couples” Wes and Travis are staked out in a penthouse hotel to target a particular room with a female murderer who happens to be a crime novelist. Travis witnesses in his binoculars (observing other windows as well) the novelist kill a man after he knocks on her door and enters. She is also involved in helping a criminal mastermind get out of jail.
During the scenes the partners argue about food, the temperature in the penthouse and other trivial things; but during their therapy session Travis tells the therapist that Wes is an excellent cook and wonders why he doesn’t have a significant other. The other couples in the session look pleased until Wes describes Travis as someone with poor eating habits and is very sloppy as a roommate. They continue to rant and rave at each other until Dr. Ryan puts an end to their quarrel.
Due to the shooting at the door, Travis is able to arrest the woman and bring her to the police station. Later she is released, which disgusts Travis. He decides to follow her every move. Travis goes to where the woman stays, gun in hand and sees her with a duffel bag full of money with another man. He enters the room, there is a scuffle and he is handcuffed by the man; who later turns out to be an ex-prison guard. Wes appears out of the blue, saves his partner, and the case is solved. As they move out of the penthouse, each apologizes at the end for their squabbles (until the next time). To be continued.
Michael Ealy, 30, is a Silver Spring, Maryland native. He has appeared in films “Barbershop” (1and 2) (2002, 2004), “For Colored Girls” (2010) and “Think Like a Man” (2012). Ealy’s television credits include “The Good Wife” (2010) and “Californication” (2011). He was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for his role as Darwyn al-Sayeed in “Sleeper Cell” (2005-2006) for Best Performance by an Actor in a Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television.
Warren Kole, 34, was born in San Antonio, Texas but according to Wikipedia spent much of his early years in Washington, D.C. His film debut was “A Love Song for Bobby Long” (2004) with John Travolta and Scarlett Johansson and appeared recently in “The Avengers” (2012). Kole’s television roles include “The Chicago Code”, “24”, and an eight-part TNT miniseries “Into the Nest”, which was produced by Steven Spielberg.
Common Law is a crime drama with humor that is not as hard core or serious as its USA colleagues “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit” (SVU) or “Burn Notice.” It is geared toward the 18-35 year age crowd. But if you’re young at heart, you can still check out this summer series with three episodes left.
Common Law airs Friday evenings at 10/9c. Take a peek at one of the next episodes below.
Should the new series go into Season 2? Let me know your thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org. Subscribe.