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TV Review: CBS' 'Golden Boy'

CBS premieres new character-driven cop drama Golden Boy on Tuesday at 10 p.m. ET. The following are reviews from TV critics around the Web, compiled by B&C.

“It’s always gratifying to see writers bold enough to experiment with narrative, but flashbacks and flash-forwards are a dicey business, and Golden Boy is not aided by its lead, who spends most of the pilot looking intensely at the floor just behind the camera in order to offer us a 3/4 profile that someone, apparently, thinks exudes Strong Emotion.”

Mary McNamara, Los Angeles Times

Golden Boy feels like CBS’s stiff and limited effort to create its own version of the sort of suspense melodrama that has succeeded at ABC without moving too far from its own episodic, procedural comfort zone. And ‘too far’ means ‘not at all.’”

Mike Hale, The New York Times

“Just as quickly, though, the time-jumping makes the story feel more complicated than it needs to. Golden Boy doesn’t need to be framed as a series of implicit or explicit flashbacks to engage us as an adventure tale.”

David Hinckley, New York Daily News

“What doesn’t work at all in the first two episodes of Golden Boy is the more familiar procedural material. The crimes of the week are just bland, late Law & Order-level stories. It must be hard to write procedurals these days, since it seems as though every possible twist on the homicide case has already been done…Perhaps, with time, the writers will be able to devote more attention to that critical component.”

Matthew Gilbert, The Boston Globe

“It’s as if CBS executives didn’t trust their instincts when they ordered Golden Boy, a more nuanced show for the network, and then went flailing about to make the series more black and white and less gray. This doesn’t ruin Golden Boy but it is a disappointing backpedal from a promising premiere.”

Rob Owen, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette