Shots Fired Series Premiere Review

FOX's latest new drama deals with the topic of police shootings, and I have been excited to watch it since the trailer was released because the show seemed to have a real intensity to it. Now, months later, it's time for me to see if the show can live up to my expectations for it.

S1E1 "Hour One: Pilot"

The show wastes no time in giving us its premise: a black cop shoots a white kid. As one would expect, the cop is very nervous after shooting the kid. Then, we are introduced to the people on this case, who are quite different. One, Preston Terry, is very calm, while the other, Ashe Akino, has a messy personal life. The team talks to the officer to hear his story, and Akino gets him to open up, but as soon as Terry accuses him of profiling, he shuts down. The tension between these two escalates quickly, but this tension is fairly typical.

The team visits the neighborhood where the shooting happened, but get nowhere with their questions. A press conference is held, and the speech that Terry gives captivates everyone watching, a bit too much so, to the point where it seems somewhat ridiculous. Terry and Akino talk, and in this scene it seemed their tension from earlier has magically vanished. Terry attempts to find out what the "right questions" to ask are, and the responses he gets from the person he asks seem unnecessarily vague, just for suspense. However, he never gets to find out anything, because he gets beaten up.

The next day, the team discovers what they were supposed to find out, that there was a shooting of a black kid that was never investigated. Akino thinks that this is important, but Terry wants to focus on their case. Akino's story is followed next, which I am glad about because I think she is more interesting than Terry. She discovers that her daughter may be getting taken away from her.

The show chooses not to be light on backstory, which is a decision I like, as we, and Akino, get to see Terry interact with his brother. However, a decision I do not like is having Akino get involved with Terry's brother, because this makes us wait even longer for anything more regarding the case. In the morning, we finally get a development, as a video is released of the officer making racist comments.

Terry and Akino visit a church service, where the mothers of both kids that were shot by police officers are brought to the front and given love. The end of the episode sends the show's tone of fear from people that are chasing you, as a kid runs from people in a car. This ending clearly sends the tone that the show want to communicate, but it hasn't done much of it this week, except in the scene where Terry and Akino first visited the neighborhood where the shooting occurred.

This pilot did some things very well, such as really introducing us to the two characters of Preston Terry and Ashe Akino. They definitely are characters that I want to spend the next nine weeks with, which is good. Not quite as much happened with the case as I would have wanted, but it wasn't too bad in that regard.

Score: 8.5/10

What did you think of "Hour One: Pilot"? Leave your thoughts in the comments!

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