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TV Review: “The Enemy Within” (2019 – ) ★★


There’s something I will never be able to understand – why all the American TV channels including ABC, NBC, Showtime, Fox, or some other unmentioned TV channels keep making TV series about terrorism, killing, and how one police department tries to solve a murder. Don’t we deserve to have something more decent? Well, you may say that “This is Us” is quite an excellent show, and that’s something I won’t disagree with. But that is the only show I’m seeing in my recent memory that covers life outside of violence and cares more about life itself, which we need now more than ever.

“The Enemy Within” is another new FBI series which revolves around a brilliant former CIA operative named Erica Shepherd (Jennifer Carpenter), the most notorious traitor of the United States, who is asked to join Will Keaton (Morris Chestnut) after a deadly attack orchestrated by FBI’s most wanted criminals, an SVR agent, Michael Tall, who she must help to catch. While they have different approaches, the two must learn to leave their animosity behind and work together in the name of the safety of the United States.

The series starts with Erica Shepherd being surrounded by the FBI to be arrested. A brief presentation of the newspapers reveals the reason of her capture, as she’s being accused in revealing the identities of CIA agents – one of the most definitive details we never have a doubt about it. But what she does will be revealed towards the end of the pilot season which, appears to me, like the most epic battle of minds between Tall and Shepherd.

An interesting fact is also revealed showing the seriousness of NBC’s “The Enemy Within” and how it’s going to take a turn from that moment on. We learn that the FBI estimates there are one hundred thousand foreign spies working within the United States today. More than any time in history. And that alone is a great catalyst for our curiosity to rise. But I am afraid, the series created by Ken Woodruff has already talked about it. Also, we have “The Blacklist” to enjoy, and “Blindspot” that keeps getting better and better while “The Enemy Within” offers an old and beloved story told in a way, please forgive my dear viewer just for saying that, to force you to switch the channel.

But there are bright spots in “The Enemy Within” and one of them is called Jennifer Carpenter. She perhaps is the only one who’s in a complete understanding of Erica Shepherd, her struggle, and kind of helps us to like her better towards the end. As for Morris Chestnut and his Will Keaton, I think the two must have a coffee to discuss what one can offer to another as Will Keaton, portrayed by Chestnut, is blunt and confused throughout the pilot season, which does not look good for the series as a whole.

In the end, there is done chance still, very slight though, that “The Enemy Within” can redeem itself in the next episode. However, it will still fail to go any further than that. Honestly speaking, there’s nothing I want more than to have this new series to succeed but something tells me it’s not going to happen, which is terrible news for the leading cast, a total waste of Jennifer Carpenter’s time, as she deserves a show in which she does not have to shine alone, since in projects like this, not only the storyline line but team work is required as well which this series is lacking.

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