TV Reviews : ‘Bodies of Evidence’ Formulaic Police Show

Amazing facts: The premiere of the CBS drama “Bodies of Evidence” (tonight at 10 on Channels 2 and 8) is on directly opposite Lifetime’s re-airing of the unrelated 1988 TV movie “Body of Evidence”! Gol- lee , will some folks who thought they’d finally learned to use their VCR Pluses be surprised tomorrow!

Actually, anyone who tapes the wrong “Body” by accident is luckier than they’ll know. Entertaining the unlikeliness of this counterprogramming coincidence is far more entertaining than the tired and sub-formulaic show itself, a serial mystery about a team of L.A. homicide investigators that’s as ready for a post-mortem as the title stiffs.

Leading the cast is Lee Horsley (“Guns of Paradise”) as a divorced cop obsessed with the darker side of his work, complemented by George Clooney as a younger, quite studly cop obsessed with the darker side of his work. Kate McNeil rounds out the topping trio as the token-dame cop who, being a comely blond, is required to brood less often than her male counterparts but may or may not turn out to be obsessed with the darker side of her work later on.

We know these detectives are deeply troubled by their respective cases because they stare at photos of corpses day and night, even in the midst of love trysts, underscored by assorted quasi- film noir wind instruments.


Clooney is on the trail of a serial strangler; he gets hunches about the case, and when asked why, looks meaningfully into the distance and says, “I don’t know. I just know .” Improbably, he leads a surviving victim to re-enact her sexual assault with him in a public place. Later, he gets bedded down by a cut-throat female TV reporter who only sleeps with him to get info for a story, which subsequently gets the aforementioned victim killed. Who needs villains when your series has lunkhead heroes like this?

The hottest stuff in this premiere, though, comes in a laughable hoot of a bedroom scene between Horsley and his ex-wife, whom we first meet in the heat of passion, as she snaps a post on his headboard. “You had a homicide tonight, didn’t you?” she asks him, post-snap. “I can always tell--the more intense the case, the more intense the sex.” And the more intense the cliches.