371. TV Review: Vanished Season One Premiere

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

From FOX: The wife of a Georgia senator has vanished. The search for her unravels a prominent family and exposes evidence that could rock the foundations of American Society.

FOX's fall season premiered Monday night with the first of the season's fall arrivals, Vanished. This series has been much talked about in recent months, and it brings some familiar faces back to television, including Gale Harold from Showtime's hit series Queer as Folk and Ming Na, best known for her role on the hit NBC series, ER. The series follows the disappearance of a Senator's wife, but before the investigation can begin she has to disappear first.

This episode opens up with her on a strange phone call where she asks the caller to never call her at the house again. That night is the night of a big party. We see the wife and her husband share a moment before they both need to get ready for the party, and then we jump ahead to the party itself. The wife gets a phone call that is urgent, and she leaves the table. This is the last we see of Sarah, the senator's wife.

As it turns out, the man that came to get her about the phone call doesn't actually work at the hotel the party is being held at. In fact, someone on staff mentions facial hair is against hotel policy. The senator notices the door to the outside open, and he runs out. Once there he finds a necklace a young girl just gave to his wife. It was ripped off her neck.

We are then introduced to the main investigator of the case played by Gale Harold. We see him in a flashback on a prior case that goes terribly wrong. He is then assigned to this case. We also see a reporter, Judy Nash, played by Rebecca Gayheart that jumps when she hears about the possible kidnapping of the senator's wife.

Once the investigator and his team reach the scene of the crime, they go to work. Agent Kelton takes over and he finds the fingerprints of the man that went off with the wife. It turns out the wife might not be the only one missing. Her step-daughter is also nowhere to be found, but we quickly see that the daughter is just off with her boyfriend. SWAT breaks in and finds, but the boyfriend is quickly released. The reporter sees the daughter's boyfriend as her in with the family. We also learn that the senator's wife, Sarah Collins, was possibly pregnant, according to a home pregnancy test found on the scene.

Kelton takes this information to the Senator. He wants to go to the media with a ransom call, but the detective stops that. Next on the list is downloading the GPS from her car so they can know where she was that day. She went to a small cafe. An interview with her parents bring to light that she can't possibly be pregnant. Kelton is called when they find the concierge that had come for Sarah Collins. However, when they arrive they find him dead in the trunk of a car. He died shortly after he left with Sarah.

As for Judy Nash, she is stirring up trouble. Her own investigation picks up that Sarah Collins has disappeared before, prior to her marriage to the senator. She also is successful in getting the daughter's boyfriend to talk. The detective looks into who Sarah met at the cafe the day before, and an ATM camera shows that she met her husband's ex-wife. The two had supposedly never met before, so this confuses the senator. This sends the FBI to her location. However, she is gone when they arrive. Hairs that appear to belong to Sarah are found in the room.

This case gets extremely weird when the FBI goes to an abandoned house and find the body of a long missing woman, the wife of the mayor of Atlanta. She had disappeared ten years before, and it appears she hasn't aged a day since her disappearance. The detectives believe she was killed and then frozen ten years ago, only to be dethawed and left to be found now. The episode ends with a man seeing Sarah's picture and saying she is a woman he used to date twelve years before named Nicky Johnson.

This series has an okay beginning. It felt a bit choppy and slow in parts. Upon first seeing Agent Kelton, I told myself he appeared to be Brian Kinney, only straight. Kinney being the character Gale Harold is best known for from Queer as Folk. I felt no connection to any of the characters though. The wife disappears way too quickly for us to really care about her. Perhaps, they needed to have an episode with more shown on her and then have the big disappearance. I'll keep watching, and I'll let you know what I think as the series progresses.


Bev said...

Oh man, I was going to watch this. Oh I'm not out of luck. The Pilot is being shown again on Sunday. ;) Cheers.

Becky said...

Totally agree. I only watched because there was nothing else on, the kids groaned the entire time and we started to view it as an episode of "Mystery Science Theater" and talked over it to make it more exciting, ; )

mrsmogul said...

I miss FOX tv!!

Dramedy Girl said...

I kinda liked it. I think it could be either really stellar or just plain sucky. I'll be back to watch it this week and try to figure out if it's a keeper or not.

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