5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Television Milestone: Exceptional on many levels,
This review is from: The Equalizer: Series 1 [DVD] (DVD)
The importance of this show can't be exaggerated. The underlying message is hope; and who couldn't use some of that these days?
Woodward gives an excellent understated performance, the supporting cast is of a consistently high standard (including too many top guest actors to mention) and it still looks great 20 years on; rarely showing its age. It brilliantly captures the dirty edginess of 1980's New York in a way no other show managed.
A Thesis could easily be written on it, its commentary on life, moral ambiguity, redemption, good vs evil & society in general. It does all this within a highly entertaining format & sustains it for nearly 100 episodes.
It manages the above, but never takes itself too seriously. The writing was surprisingly intelligent for a 'prime time' show - and it at once appeals to a mass market audience and more discriminating viewers; an impressive achievement.
The fact Woodward's character McCall is a foreigner (half British, half American) - an outsider who has lead a transitory life - is a crucial element at the show's heart. That contributes to the layers of separation between McCall & 'mere mortals' (ie everybody else).
This gives the McCall character an almost God like 'otherworldliness', making the viewer believe he is capable of anything. Maintaining these layers of separation will be crucial to the success of the forthcoming movie.
We can forgive it a little cheese and the odd slightly OTT gun fight; in fact The Equalizer would be all the poorer without them; they only add to its Cult appeal & remind us of a simpler world.
It was decades ahead of its time & it just works; lets hope the film lives up to the original...