Wednesday, January 12, 2011

UPDATED - Shakeups At LAW & ORDER: LOS ANGELES

When I first noted the selection of actor Skeet Ulrich to play Detective Rex Winters, the first role cast on the then-upcoming Law & Order: Los Angeles last summer, little did I realize that he would end up becoming the new show's version of George Dzundza.  And yet, here we are, barely half a year into the series' freshman year, and in a pretty sweeping retooling effort, Ulrich has been shown the door by producer Dick Wolf, along with actors Megan Boone and Regina Hall, the assistants to executive DDA's Terence Howard and Alfred Molina respectively. The dismissal of Boone and Hall doesn't really make much of an impact on me, as neither had much time to make a mark, but I have to say that I am disappointed at Ulrich's ouster.

Certainly the show has had its issues (some of which I discussed here), but I always felt those were more about stylistic and creative decisions rather than casting.  And while I made mention in my review of the pilot episode that I didn't see much chemistry between him and partner Corey Stoll, the more recent installments had gone a long way toward addressing that, and I was looking forward to seeing the pair continue to grow together.  No idea who the producers are planning to replace Ulrich with, but I'd guess it's going to be an older actor in the Jerry Orbach mold. That said, Stoll already does the world-wise cynic bit to perfection, which doesn't really much room for contrast. Either way, we'll know who's on deck before too long, as Law & Order: Los Angeles resumes its first season later this month.

Update: Well, I guess now we know -- and I guess I was sort of right.  The current plan for LOLA 2.0 a few weeks after its return is for Molina's crusading DA Ricardo Morales to trade in his law license for an LAPD badge as the show's new senior detective.  Meanwhile, Terrence Howard's Jonah Dekker moves up to full-time DDA.  I'm not even remotely sure what to make of this.  It could end up being a brilliant bit of TV two-stepping, or one of those dunderheaded examples of midstream retooling that we'll all shake our heads at in hindsight.  Only time will tell.

1 comment:

jj said...

Ulrich was the ONLY reason I watched. BYE BYE LOLA.

This was a cluster truck from the start. Skeet deserves better.