Guns get all the best lines in this bloke- fest
The Unit 10.55pm, Seven
FANS of the computer game genre known as the first- person shooter will settle down comfortably with Seven’s late- evening offering, The Unit .
It’s big men with big guns and big ambitions on what is a well- worn television trail in the hunt for terrorists. The premise is as simplistic as a George W. Bush media conference on international diplomacy: there are some bad men out there and we’re gonna get ’ em.
The video game comparison is apt. In the pixilated world where the hero can wade into a roomful of men brandishing machineguns and dispatch them with nary a scratch and plenty of ammo left in his lone pistol, the stars of The Unit would shine.
Dennis Haysbert ( 24 ) is Jonas Blane, the head of an elite division of the US armed forces, the Rangers, on the hunt for a terror cell with a sideline in the heroin trade.
The episode opens with the search for liver transplant patient General John Smith, finally tracked down to a hospital in a flooded region. When the unit arrives, you can almost see the director toying with turning the hospital corridors into a scene straight from Doom, but he tempers his enthusiasm to a guns- drawn foray into the man’s hospital room: ‘‘ US State Department, diplomatic security,’’ barks Blane, neatly circumventing a gun battle with the general’s armed guards that would probably have resulted in more bloodshed and casualties. Well, at least they were in a hospital.
If The Unit were Get Smart we’d be treated to Agent 86 forever mumbling ‘‘ missed him by that much’’. For that is the secret to sustaining this video game for the better part of an hour.
Having located their man, it’s time to get him moving, but there’s a big problem. Just as they reef out his central line and oxygen supply, the team finds out that a nearby river has burst its banks, their Humvee is under water and all the roads are blocked. ‘‘ Would you fly a chopper into a hurricane?’’ Blane asks one of his men. ‘‘ For you, these guys would fly gasoline into hell,’’ he is told.
Sure, there is loyalty, even romance, but for the most part The Unit is little more than a video game, one with a slightly better script but none of the interactive attraction.
It’s a bloke’s show where the weapons have the best lines. If you like things that go bang in the night and the PlayStation is on the fritz, The Unit might just be your poison.
First- person shooter: 24 s Dennis Haysbert in The Unit