Leverage may not be sci-fi, but when a show can impress my super-techy, nitpicky husband with its plausibility, it’s definitely got geek cred. Plus, it features Christian Kane, everyone’s favorite crooked lawyer from Angel, so really, what’s not to like.
Sure, Leverage stretches the limits on plausibility, but what I love about this show is that not only does as much go wrong as happens according to plan, but they play on the characters’ eccentricities to make them believable. Hitter Elliot Spencer (played by Kane) doesn’t just happen to be an excellent chef or fashionista because it suits the plot; it’s in his background. And all their brilliant tech, with all its over-the-top flashiness is explained by Hardison’s obsessive personality. He works hard on all the flash, and just wants a little credit! And we all know something’s very, very wrong with our resident thief Parker (Beth Riesgraf)…
The characters and the chemistry between them is brilliant, with witty banter that could give Gilmore Girls or any given Whedon show a run for its money, and the cons play as con men would play them, working the egos of their marks so effectively. And, my favorite part that they’ve been able to carry on for two full seasons now, is that I don’t know where each episode is going. The twists, the double crosses, you never know when it’s part of the plan or when something’s actually gone wrong, requiring mastermind Nate Ford (played by the brilliant Timothy Hutton) to do what he does best: think on his feet and come up with a new plan.
The writers work hard to ensure that the technology is accurate to what’s available out there, which is super spooky stuff when you see the brilliant things that Hardison and Parker come up with. The third season picks right up, shortly after last season’s “how the hell are they getting out of this one?” ending, and doesn’t let go. In addition to the layers of manipulation, this season we’re seeing our first real Big Bad Guy. Sure, Sterling (played by our favorite schemer, Mark Sheppard) has featured prominently, but this season Nate’s Crew is working toward a new, overarching goal, and if the season’s openers are any indication, it’s going to be a great season.
Leverage airs Sundays on TNT. Haven’t seen it yet? Catch the first season in its entirety on Netflix Watch It Now!