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Spectrum’s First Original Show, “L.A.’s Finest” Is Out of Touch and “Tonally Disastrous”

Phillip Dampier May 16, 2019 Charter Spectrum, Consumer News, Editorial & Site News, Online Video, Video 3 Comments

Spectrum TV subscribers are the only ones in the country that can watch Charter Communications’ first original Spectrum-exclusive production, “L.A.’s Finest,” available only on demand, on a channel somewhere in the thousands, if you or anyone else can find it.

A Variety review suggests a search to find the hour-long drama isn’t worth the effort:

“L.A.’s Finest” isn’t just a cop show. It’s a gambit — a bet placed by cable provider Spectrum that by providing not just access to HBO and HGTV but original programming of its own, it’ll stand out. The series, a Jerry Bruckheimer production set within the universe of his “Bad Boys” film franchise, is the beginning of a stream of on-demand Spectrum Originals programming that will also include, eventually, a comeback for “Mad About You.”

The idea of providing some added value to subscribers through original programming is a reasonable enough one (why not get in a game with so many players already?). But this particular show seems ill-suited to its format: Meant to live on an on-demand platform, this drama seems oddly unlikely to have been specifically demanded by anyone at all. A tonally disastrous half-comedy, half-melodrama about policing that draws in cartel politics and family angst, “L.A.’s Finest” seems designed to be vaguely, generically acceptable to have on in the background — which makes it a strange choice as the launching point for a set of programs that would seem to require viewers affirmatively choosing to tune in.

As cord-cutting grows epidemic, cable companies are looking for ways to keep you hooked to your cable TV package, and after watching Netflix and Hulu produce original series, why can’t cable companies do it too? Charter’s first original production stars Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba as two female cops that sometimes take matters into their own hands in the cause of justice, while balancing family and relationships. Sometimes a drama, sometimes a comedy, the show feels like a network series reject from 20 years ago. It’s not the traditional police procedural that de-emphasizes the home life and character development of its stars, a-la Law & Order. Instead, it occasionally reminds viewers of the interwoven drama of NYPD Blue, a series now long gone.

Spectrum’s effort rubs against the grain in another way: although offering the first three episodes for immediate viewing, future episodes will be rationed out a little at a time, defeating today’s streaming reality of binge watching. The next two episodes are due May 20. Spreading out the nine episodes of season one could be a dangerous idea for a mediocre show that will require viewers to come back again and again to catch up. Many won’t. Others may never find the show in the first place, lost in cable TV Channel Siberia. Your best bet is to find the On Demand channel on your Spectrum lineup and it probably will be there. If you fall in love with the show, bookmark its streaming home page. You will get regular updates about future episodes.

If you do not have a Spectrum TV subscription, tough luck — no L.A.’s Finest for you. But considering the caliber of Spectrum’s first foray into original productions, that probably is not much of a loss.

A trailer for Spectrum TV’s original production, L.A.’s Finest. (1:48)

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Anonymous

Find this show, how do i get rid of it? for weeks this show has been advertised in the cable guide attached to many channels including all local channels, HBO, Starz, USA, and FX. literally attached as you can delete the channel as a favorite and it no longer appear the half screen advertisement wanting you to click it and watch the show. it makes it hard to read the guide for visually impaired persons because it introduce bright colors into the guide whereas you would only have the contrasting dark color with white text otherwise. IF you can tell… Read more »

Melvin Arzu
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Melvin Arzu

It is a shame the way the city and the New York State have had handle the whole strike situation .it has been a win win for that company named spectrum/charter (Lowercase). They no longer should be operating in the whole state. They have no respect for anything or anyone . It’s Really upsetting you don’t care the pain they have caused to Many families including mine. And that is just a little fraction of damage compared with the one they will cause if they staying in.. then you will remember there was an opportunity to get rid of them… Read more »

karen
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karen

Please HELP … how do we get rid of the annoying advertising for Spectrum’s on Demand show LA’s Finest!! I am tired of it showing up on our TVlineup ever couple of lines. We tried the show and it is not a good enough production to watch again! It takes up too much of the TV line up and it seems no way to get rid of it! Anyone know what to do?

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