You're being watched. You're being listened to. A machine spits out a number and identifies a person of interest. Victim? Perpetrator? That's unknown, but it's clear that Big Brother is watching and you never know when you might need saving.
"Ghosts" jumped right into the story, although I'm not sure about the time frame between this episode and the pilot, and showed that John Reese is taking his new job seriously. He's highly dangerous and highly effective. He also likes nice suits.
While I found Reese rather off putting and emotionless a week ago, his demeanor (and my opinion of him) changed for the better in this episode.
James Caviezel clearly made a choice to portray the character as cold and robotic at the start because Reese's experiences had shaped him into a broken and untrusting man. Reese was highly guarded and as much as I felt disconnected from him, the second episode allowed me to recognize his own disconnect from himself and the world.
This episode showed a warmer (if you can call it that), version of Reese. Okay. So he has a lot of heating up to do, but it's a start.
Change takes time, and as much as the episode quickly moved around from clue to discovery to pay-off, I like that the character growth is taking a gradual yet slow pace. It gives the audience a chance to witness little changes and details without the overcoming of personal problems shoved instantly down our throats.
Additionally, it's those tiny moments where Reese flashes a quick smile or a clever comment that make him more than just a tough killing machine. Granted, wearing a nice suit and beating up bad guys in the elevator, making dump truck entrances, and repeatedly showing enemies why not to mess with him also make Reese one cool dude.
Interestingly enough, he didn't seem to have a problem killing a person. Sure, he usually goes for the knees to take away their golf game, but Reese didn't hesitate when he shot the hitman in the laundry mat... or in the hallway for round two. It separates him from the standard good guy who prefers to knock out his opponents and refuses to kill. It's what makes Reese such a gritty and interesting character, as he borders the line of good guy/bad guy.
As for Finch, he remained his mysterious self. Why can't he turn his neck? How did he get that limp? Who was his colleague when The Machine was in its origin stages? (I mean, besides being another member of the Others on Lost.) The questions simply swirl around his character, even as bits of flashback give the audience a glimpse into his past.
Could Finch be a bad guy? I mean, is it safe to assume he is a good guy?
I'm glad that Reese is curious as to what those secrets are instead of completely giving into the notion of The Machine and its magical lottery numbers. Plus, the cat and mouse game between the two "partners" should prove highly entertaining for its own form of banter and attempts to be one step ahead of the other.
The case of the week wasn't all that interesting. The discovery of the expensive real estate and "dead" girl moved by with blazing speed. Sometimes, magically finding a lead or a clue when it's convenient makes a show more like an episode of Scooby Doo, but I'm enjoying the characters roam around to save the day, so I'll let it slide.
As much as the show falls into the procedural category, I find my interest lies more in learning about the characters. If I'm not interested in the leads, it doesn't matter how provocative or mind bending the plot is. Reese and Finch are obviously just getting started. That said, I'm hoping Detective Carter gets a chance to do something and even interact with Reese or Finch. She would add another great dynamic and perspective for the show. Hopefully, she's not just "that cop that follows the main characters around."
All in all, this episode was a solid outing that continued to establish the tone and feel for the story and its characters. It's looking to be one interesting and action packed ride.
Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.