'Boss: Season 1'
(Kelsey Grammer, Connie Nielsen, Kathleen Robertson, Martin Donovan, Jeff Hephner, et al / 3-Disc DVD / NR / (2011) 2012 / LGF)
Overview: Mayor Tom Kane (Golden Glober winner Kelsey Grammer) is King of Chicago, and he rules his domain with an iron fist. Deception, scandal, and betrayal go hand in hand with Kane's form of politics. As long as he gets the job done, the people of Chicago look the other way. Despite being the most effective mayor in recent history, Kane is hiding a dark secret.
DVD Verdict: A Golden Globe win for star Kelsey Grammer, but weirdly no Emmy in sight (he said on TV the other day he thinks he's been "blacklisted"), I have to admit that when this first season was on HBO the first time around I watched this debut season over and over (and over)!
The depth of this show includes a script that is so rich that you need to go back and forth and repeat things that where said - before you go "WOW is that what the plan was all along?" I just NEVER had my brain so satisfied with a TV show that is chock full of challenges, surprises and lines that, in truth, each one of them could become quotes.
OK, ok, sure the morally ambiguous and corrupt main character is especially prevalent in television these days (The Sopranos, Breaking Bad, Mad Men) but Grammar's cynical, ruthless performance and the intense story line manage to keep it interesting. And yes, I will admit that some of the plot twists are a little silly to sit with. And sure, the sex scenes are a tad bit tacky. But, hey now, overall, 'Boss' is a fun and entertaining show that is definitely worth the watch.
In other news re: other cast members, Connie Nielsen plays Meredith Kane, Tom Kane's estranged wife. Meredith is also highly politically-motivated and puts her self-image and politics above all else as well. Martin Donovan plays Ezra Stone, Tom Kane's senior political advisor and my favorite character after Kane. Francis Guinan is spot-on as the current Governor and Jeff Hephner serves up a true star making role as his rival. I expect we'll be seeing Hephner more frequently if this is any indication.
But STILL at the heart of 'Boss' is a fierce Grammar. Like the driving force within a Shakespearean tragedy, his Mayor Tom Kane is an unforgettable power player who stands to conquer all challengers. It's a big role and a great performance. My hope is that the series continues to be of the highest quality to date, in my opinion. This is a Widescreen Presentation 1.85:1 enhanced for 16x9 TVs.