It’s not too many shows on TV these days for guys to get excited about. The networks are inundated with girl fights, faux relationships, and self-help segments. Cable TV has taken a chance on some shows that are either too lecherous for broadcast tv or the premium networks don’t really know how to market them. A&E’s midseason hit “Breakout Kings” is 1 of those shows.
Starring Laz Alonso (Avatar, Jumping the Broom) and Domenick Lombardozzi (Breaking Bad), the show has an interesting concept; catch a criminal with a criminal. The show is from the same production and writing team that delivered the obscure “Prison Break” on Fox. Going in knowing that, you have to assume that there’s going to be some cheesy gunfights involved and a law enforcement cliche thrown in. [they actually do a full episode centered around 1 of the original escapees in “Prison Break”]
Every episode, the team of US Marshal Charlie DuChamp (Alonso) and recently adjudicated dirty cop Ray Zancanelli (Lombardozzi) use their legal pull, along with the unique skill set of 3 very different criminals, to capture an escapee from a maximum security prison. It goes a few steps further than the capacity that criminal informants are used in. The 3 criminals are currently serving time for various crimes. So the deal is, for every escapee they catch, a month is shaved off their sentence and they get to stay in a minimum security prison. The trio is a great mix of street smarts and incredibly cunning ways. In real life, no government agency would allow such a “secret ops” subculture to exist. But the way the characters are set up and how their intangible resourcefulness are applied to catch the escapees (who pose a far greater threat) keeps the show engaging enough to warrant a 2nd season.