First Impressions

Painkiller Jane

Aired on: Sci Fi Channel

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


            Again, I come to you with a review of a (sort-of) new show!  Sorry, first impressions kinda became fourth impressions as I enjoyed a new disease that runs rampant among college students: they call it: final-month-oí-semester-itis.  But fortunately, I have managed to peak my head out over the dismal disease to give you a review of Sci-Fiís latest original series, Painkiller Jane.  I saw the preview for Painkiller Jane while watching The Dresden Files, week after week.  I was immediately excited for many reason.  I couldnít wait to test it out.

            Painkiller Jane starred Kristanna Loken (Blood Rayne, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines) as Jane Vasco, a DEA agent who finds herself and her partner Maureen (Alaina Huffman), sucked into a government agency that tracks Neuros, people who have special neurological abilities such as mind-reading, mind-control, or many other more inventive forms.  This group is led by Andre McBride (Rob Stewart, Sweating Bullets), contains the obligatory tough guy (Noah Danby, Against the Ropes, The Tuxedo), the obligatory computer geek (Sean Owen Roberts), and the new trend, the Indian doctor who understands things better than the rest of us (Stephen Lobo, Falcon Beach) much like Heroes character Mohinder Suresh.  Jane begrudgingly works with them, and on her first case, her partner is mind controlled into throwing himself out of a window, taking her with him.  What luck.  Jane is instantly killed, though somehow manages to come back to life.  Once again, this is all very reminiscent of a certain indestructible cheerleading Heroine.  The doctor looks at her, and we instantly learn that she is no Neuro.  Nobody can tell what she is.  But one thing they can tell is that an ability like that is nothing but useful.

            To be blunt, I did not like Painkiller Jane.  I was sorely disappointed because I had every intention of liking it.  The cool name and the disco club styled previews left me eager for more, but somewhere along the way, the execution became misplaced.  Each episode has voiceovers, all of which feel misplaced, takes you out of the story, and include cheesy lines like ďI didnít just handle pain, I murdered it.Ē  Just bad.  Loken, who Iíve usually found to be quite good, acts very wooden, and the rest of the characters mostly have no personality whatsoever.  The mood is dark, the atmosphere is so dark you have to adjust the lighting on your TV screen for half of each episode, and the show is mostly a copy of everything else thatís on TV today. 

            So, if you are looking for a new TV show to fit into your daily schedule, this is not the one.  Too dark, emotionless and cold, the only thing about this show that is good is its action scenesÖand for an action-packed show, there still isnít enough of that to cover up the mediocrity.  Donít bother. 



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