Clever Watch: Interrogation @petersarsgaard @Melinda_McGraw @vincentdonofrio @EricRoberts @CBSAllAccess #GoodWatch #QuarantineLife

If you enjoy this post, please retweet it. Other posts in this series can be accessed by clicking here.

Almost everyone who subscribed to CBS All-Access did so for Star Trek. I have no data to support that assertion beyond myself as a single data point, and I don’t care. As Bill Maher likes to say, “I don’t know it for a fact; I just know it’s true.” I can’t say that I minded having access to CBS during the NFL season when I first subscribed — I hadn’t yet replaced SlingTV with the far superior Hulu Live — but if it weren’t for Star Trek, I wouldn’t have subscribed. It turns out, that was shortsighted. Jordan Peele’s Twilight Zone turned out to be pretty decent, and I was able to stream some movies that weren’t available elsewhere in my suite of streaming services. But now I’ve found something really good.

Interrogation was fascinating. It’s story premise is trite: A woman is killed, her drug-addict son is blamed, and his father believes his son didn’t do it. It’s methodology is just as simple but not so trite. With the exception of the first and tenth episodes that bookend season one, the eight other episodes can be watched in whatever order you choose. Each episode takes place somewhere between 1982 and 2005. Thus, episode 3 takes place one year before the murder, and episode 7 takes place one year after the last episode with the big reveal.

Why do this? Because over those decades, the case went cold, and when the police reopen a cold case, they don’t necessarily view the evidence chronologically. If they don’t, you shouldn’t. One thing I didn’t like is that I was given no guidance as to how to watch the episodes, making my choices completely arbitrary. I’d have liked for them to say, “If you want [experience X], watch in order [ABC], but if you want [experience Y], watch in order [CAB].” I’m not sure they could have provided meaningful alternatives in that way, but it’s something to work on for next season. While I started by watching them chronologically, I eventually settled on watching them in episode order. That was far superior.

You may be thinking, “Don’t other films and shows do this sort of thing?” Yes, but I don’t often see the time jumps as important at all to the story, and sometimes I find it distracting, bringing down the movie. That is, it’s sometimes nothing more than a cheap gimmick. Not so with Interrogation, which was a puzzle, and the back and forth through time was part of that puzzle. It’s the same thing, but still different. I see this as an example of a show that does time jumps correctly and with a purpose. In my opinion, that’s rare.

I should also mention that it has a good cast, including some solid veterans you’re bound to recognize (e.g., David Strathairn, Peter Sarsgaard, Melinda McGraw, Eric Roberts, and Vincent D’Onofrio playing a cop of course 🙂 ).

I really like this show and hope for a season 2. As always, YMMV.

Follow me on Twitter @gsllc (please retweet!)
Follow Peter Sarsgaard @petersarsgaard
Follow Melinda McGraw @Melinda_McGraw
Follow Vincent D’Onofrio @vincentdonofrio
Follow Eric Roberts @EricRoberts
Follow CBS All-Access @CBSAllAccess