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Steven Seagal Lawman Doesn’t Arrest Attention

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Steven Seagal LawmanWhen one receives an advance screener of a television show, it is typically customary to write a review before said television show’s debut. Why? Because the station – in this case A&E – generally wants to build hype for the show it’s promoting – in this case, Steven Seagal Lawman – and because I like to feel all warm and fuzzy by being ahead of the average person.

So, it doesn’t do much good when I forget to write the review, having watched the first two episodes of the show last week, after it’s already debuted (Wednesday 10pm ET/PT on A&E). Damn.

We all know that Steven Seagal’s career has been flatlined for years. The star of such classics as Under Siege (and that movie still rocks) has been demoted to direct-to-DVD fare for quite some time (and as he gets up in years, even that seems to be waning), and he’s now more of a running joke that anything else. But – surprise! – Seagal has actually been serving as a deputy sheriff for the last twenty years, and sensing that his coffers were getting empty, he finally decided to introduce this side of his career to the public. The result: a Cops-esque show where Seagal hunts down real-life bad guys and trains rookies how to disarm and destroy people who could be harmful to their health.

Unfortunately, Steven Seagal Lawman is also a little cheesy and lame.

While the show is presumably based on footage of real stuff, the two episodes I saw felt somewhat staged. The cops-in-action moments looked real, but the way they are edited and bedazzled up take away from the best moments. Compared to Cops, the sequences are second rate and not nearly as interesting or gritty as even the dullest episodes in that long-running series.

The show also involves quite a few talking-head interviews with Seagal and his fellow cops, and scenes of Seagal training people how to fight bad guys in hand-to-hand combat or shoot guns. Unfortunately, the biggest appeal of the show is the thought that we’d get to see Seagal in a natural state, but instead Seagal just comes off as cocky and full of himself. Every time he talks, he discusses how everything is so dangerous and that he wants his guys to be as safe as possible. Fine, but he talks these points to death, to the point where you realize he actually believes that every cop is going to get into a gunfight sooner or later. I’m pretty sure that a lot of police officers never fire their weapons over their entire career.

The second episode begins to pry into the Steven Seagal facade a bit, but by that point it’s too late. Once the novelty of seeing Steven Seagal running around as a police officer (and as one would expect, he doesn’t actually get to do a whole lot) wears off, I expect audiences to abandon this show in droves.

That being said, Steven Seagal Lawman is not beyond saving. However, to become effective, A&E will need to get past Seagal’s ego – and I doubt that would happen. If they get Seagal to honestly open up about his tanking movie career, that would be interested. If they get the other officers to discuss the positives and the negatives of having Seagal on the force (is he really as cocky as he appears? Is he distracting? Is he full of himself? Full of shit?), that would be interesting. If they lose all the fancy editing during the action sequences, that’d be ideal.

However, I don’t think Seagal would ever open up in this fashion. The show is about him first and foremost, and it’s unlikely he’d be willing to squander his seemingly perfect image. Trust me, Steven: we want to see who you really are and what you really do, not hear about how helpful you are in keeping police officers alive.

By Erik Samdahl
Related categories: Movie Reviews, TV Series

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  • http://yahoo vergil spragis

    BEFORE YOU START PUTTING ATITUDE TITLES ON DEPUTY SEGAL,OR OTHER J.P.’S,GO TO JEFFERSON PARISH AND LETS SEE HOW YOU HANDLE, THE WANTA BE GANGBANGER KNUCKLEHEAD THUG PUNKS. IT’S REAL EASY TO BE A ARMCHAIR QUARTERBACK,GRAB THE BALL AND YOU CALL THE PLAY’S. AND WHEN A WIGGED OUT METH HEAD PULL’S A FELIET KNIFE AND GOES TO SLICING BACON STRIP’S OFF YOUR ASS, ARE YOU GOING TO BE ABLE TO HANDLE UP? OR SCREAM FOR COCKY AND FULL OF HIMSELF TO PULL HIM OFF YOUR ASS?

  • T

    Take a chill pill, Vergil. At no point is the article taking anything away from Jefferson Parish’s police force or what it does for the community, he (or she) is simply stating how over-produced the show unfortunately is and how much it’s made to stroke Seagal’s ego.

    I’ve pretty much already abandoned the show, having tuned in for the premier episode. I’ll catch episodes whenever I happen to tune into A&E and find it on. The show itself isn’t that bad, aside from the over-production and all the Seagal-awesomeness they stuff down our throats, the show is just not very entertaining or attention grabbing.

    My main pet-peeve with the show has got to be the accent he uses when speaking to the local people. Granted, I don’t know much about the area, but I find his interpretation of the local accent insulting, and I’m not even from there. He’s not from Louisiana, he’s an Irishman from Michigan for Pete’s sake, the accent should only be acceptable if you’re actually from the area. I know he’s been there for 20 years and maybe feels that speaking like the local residents helps him connect with them, but, come on, it’s not even a good bayou or cajun accent. It all plays out like he’s doing a bad job for a movie role that calls for him to be from there when he’s actually not… like Sean Connery in that Red October movie playing a Russian soviet… with a Scottish accent… I dunno, maybe it’s just me…. :-/

  • http://www.electricpig.co.uk/2009/11/02/mio-android-satnav-rumours-squashed Mio Navman M305

    Now this is more like it, much better than the shitty MJ piece you just put up. Probably cos you spent more than ten seconds writing this one.

  • http://yahoo Tim Soule

    When i first saw lawman on tv iwas glad to see steven seagal in it. He is a stright forward person that one day i would like to shake his hand.Not many movie stars can do what he does.When i was in high school i had to do a report and of course i chossen him and i haved learn many intresting things about that man there. I have watched all of his movies. I’m looking forward to seeing him in plenty more.

  • Elmer Grubb

    yhea hot dang it. You youngins better step right up. Thats a whoopin. Yhea! Whoo! What? What’s that? What d’ya mean Steven Segal’s fulla shit? Do you know how communistic that sounds boy? Hot dang. Sheeet I aint never met a communiser. Where i’m from, boy, it’s against the law to speak bayad about Steven Seagal, yes bob. Wooh! This shiner’s good’er than hell tomight. Anyway bowah. You better sound off that you love Steven Seagal or I WILL cover you with the stars and stripes and stomp your worthless un-patriotic corpse back to commie land. Why, any man who’d say bayad about Steven Seagal would just about say to hell with DC. ARE YEW GONNER SAY TA HELL TO OUR NATIONS CAPITAL, BOWAH? Cos if not you better wear them stars n stripes and yell about how you love merika. Me I fought in the war, I dont have to put up with this bullcrap.

    God Damn It.

  • Norris Vs Seagal

    There\’s only one thing left for tv to show before it can die as a medium.

    Yes folks.

    This week only – the universe\’s most crucial question answered…….

    Chuck Norris V Steven Seagal

    Who brings it raw?

    I say Chuck Norris wins it because

    a) he\’s chuck norris and these jokes are always about chuck norris, not steven seagal.

    b) Chuck Norris did everything steven seagal did, BEFORE steven seagal did it, could do it, or could think about doing it.

    C) Steven Seagal could never get away with wearing a tash. Chuck Norris carried it with style. Now if that doesnt clinch the deal then I dont know muffuger.

    D) For the simple fact that everything was dead before steven seagal was born – because Chuck Norris killed it. There is an argument to be had that steven seagal thefore does not even exist, period.

    E) This may account for the fact that a lot of steven seagals background history, such as his involvement with the CIA, is non existant.

    F) Everything Seagal did in the CIA was sctually done by Chuck Norris but credited to Steven Seagal due to the fact that there was no more room on Chuck\’s shirt for any more \”Damn, I\’m Good\” buttons.

  • Gary Shultz

    LOL, wow. First off, I grew up watching Seagal’s flicks, and stopped somewhere around “On Deadly Ground.” Sure I have caught a glimpse of his other movies, and I actually liked “Exit Wounds,” but you have to be a stupid M.F. to watch and admit that you liked all the rest. How many martial arts stars were exciting then fell off somewhere? A hell of a lot, and what’s more, there are great actors that have continued through their career’s making 90% great flicks.
    Furthermore, I have done Aikido for 10 years, and even had friends who studied under Seagal. Pretty much everyone who trained under him at one time or another is an Aikido flunky, from Larry Reynosa on down. They claimed reality, but can’t do a proper Aikido technique. I did Aikido, Boxing, Judo, B Ju Jitsu, Kickboxing, and JKD. Seagal taught these lost souls his 6’5″,35 year experience version of Aikido that he honed down for himself. They all rode the theatrical Aikido wagon, but never learned Aikido’s true effective power, which means that you have to learn to hone it to yourself. Watch these guys in a traditional dojo, and they get mad, making excuses why they have a black belt, and the only thing they learned to do effectively is throw a half decent punch. Seagal is a lousy instructor. He does some textbook techniques that work, but those following him are lost. Something like a Buddhist whose contribution to the world is carnage and mayhem, real role model type stuff.
    Guys like Larry Reynosa, Seagal’s long time side kick, sure can talk. They can even put on a good show with their student’s, but they talk trash about other instructors behind their backs, and cower when confronted. They hurt their own student’s, and bow out when it’s time to be Uke. They represent the opposite of what Aikido was created for, made up their own art, yet still use the name Aikido. The sad part is that they are ruining the name by putting out punk students who go around challenging other instructors, and talking trash about them.

  • JC Jackson

    Gary you sound like everything you just described about all the other people in your comment. Obviously you don’t know squat about much. You might want to leave the history of all past student’s a lone. You don’t know what you are talking about, but it does sound like you don’t mind sharing about you and how great you are. Why don’t you continue with that, so it can be confirmed you are an ego manic that knows nothing. I doubt your marital art technique on the mat is worth talking about.

    You have ruined your own name by posting your comment.

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