Jenna Kim Jones: ABC's 'Last Resort' is my last resort

Published: Wednesday, Sept. 26 2012 6:29 p.m. MDT

Among the many television shows coming out this season, "Last Resort" is just that: a last resort after you’ve exhausted all of the shows on your DVR, watched reruns of "America’s Funniest Home Videos," sworn off Netflix and live out of range of Redbox.

The truth is, while "Last Resort" is not the worst television show I’ve ever seen, it’s not the best.

I’ll be the first to admit that I love unrealistic plot devices — vampires, ghosts, werewolves, attractive police officers, you name it. But for some reason, I can’t quite wrap my brain around a submarine that can launch a nuclear missile all the way from an island near Sri Lanka to Washington, D.C. According to my husband (who knows nothing about the military), it’s possible but outrageous.

The show starts on a naval submarine. Now, my understanding of the military (and the reason I love and appreciate them) is that the men and women in uniform are excellent at push-ups, being brave and obeying orders. So when Capt. Chaplin (the writers should have reconsidered his name) of the Colorado decides to go against an authorized command to blow up Pakistan, another American submarine, the Illinois, tries to take them down. Trust me, that’s nothing to the already-mentioned nuclear bomb they launch after commandeering a nearby island. Honestly, I’m making the show sound too good.

The dialogue in "Last Resort" is confusing at first if you don’t speak submarine, which I don’t. I’d say most people don’t either, unless they’ve spent a lot of time in the Navy or watching "The Hunt for Red October," which was one of two movies my parents owned on Laser Disc as a kid. (The other was "Beaches" — you can guess which movie I watched.)

The mysteries of the show start with a corrupt president, whom the viewer doesn’t meet but knows is currently being impeached; the “prototype” the submarine is carrying, which was created by a very attractive lady scientist; the small group of Navy SEALs who may have something to do with the war that is about to start in Pakistan; and lastly, why the crew dances to "La Bamba" every time they cross the equator while I'm forced to watch.

Scott Speedman plays the captain’s right-hand man and is as cute as he was way back when he starred in "Felicity" with Keri Russell and her curly hair in 1998. But besides him and his adorable dimpled chin, the acting in the show is sub-par. I counted at least five different scenes in which the actors receive bad news and fake cry. It’s painful, but not because it’s actually sad.

My last complaint is the island itself. Apparently, the island that the submarine crew so easily commandeers has no government but one NATO base which operates with the same computer equipment that the submarine uses, making it very easy to take over (for some reason they make sure to point that out), and an evil but lovable drug lord who could, I’m guessing, wipe out 150 military men and women in no time.

"Last Resort" premiers Thursday, Sept. 27 at 7 p.m. (MST) on ABC. Between "Revolution," "Person of Interest," "Once Upon a Time," "Revenge" (season two starts this week and viewers can catch up with season one on Netflix), "Downton Abbey," "Sherlock" and the plethora of dramas out right now, so far "Last Resort" is last on my list this season.

Jenna Kim Jones is a writer and comedian in the Los Angeles area. Contact her at jkj@jennakimjones.com and visit her website at www.jennakimjones.com

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