Body of Proof has plenty of potential, thanks to a cast of entertaining and likable characters. But they too often appear to be wandering in circles in the hopes of finding a destination.
The concept of a top surgeon, who can no longer cut it and deciding to speak for the dead, isn't an original concept. Honestly, there isn't much new here, although some of the stories are more unique than others. (See death by baby snake bite). But procedural elements won't engage an audience nearly as strongly as great characters. Body of Proof has them, but as outlined in this midseason report card, they aren't being utilized to their full potential.
Dr. Megan Hunt: Dana Delany is the star that draws in the audience and holds this drama together. She's the reason I tuned in and didn't simply write this show off as one more crime procedural among the masses.
As Dr. Megan Hunt she's smart, sassy, and cynical. She's rebuilding a life she ignored for her career but can she do it without wearing the four inch stilettos at crime scenes. It looks downright silly and I feel like a horrible person when I secretly wish she'd trip…just once.
Beyond that I wish Megan had a friend to talk to about more than the latest dead body. She's working towards connecting with her colleagues but I can't say she's close to any of them and it makes Megan distant, even to the audience.
Most underutilized character: Peter Dunlop. Peter's a great guy. A former cop turned investigator. A former foster kid in search of his biological parents. There's plenty of story there but we've barely touched on it.
Instead Peter exchanges parting shots with Megan and makes himself useful at crime scenes. Now his big story is that he's messing around with Dani, the new hot girl who picks up the dead bodies. I can't see this story going anywhere. The pairing is completely mismatched and they have no real chemistry.
Peter could be an eventual love interest for Megan or they could end up being very good friends. I'm fine with either but I want to see these two lead characters connect in a way that isn't happening now. I like Peter but his storyline, or lack of one is completely unsatisfying.
Dynamic duos that work: Curtis and Ethan are the comic relief but Curtis is the stand out. He's blunt, direct, and downright funny. Plus, he isn't afraid to call Megan on her crap. We definitely need more Curtis, stat.
Ethan is sweet, funny, and just a little goofy. He's got an obvious crush on Dani and will get his heart broken when he finds out she's sleeping with Peter. Dani and Ethan might be a cute match. He may just end up being her rebound guy when this disastrous relationship with Peter finally blows up. I'm hoping that we can at least get some interesting character dynamics once the dust settles.
Detectives Sam Baker and Bud Morris are solid partners but Bud definitely outshines Sam. As much as I'm enjoying Bud's baby on the way storyline I feel as though they could tone down his fears about impending fatherhood. We don't need to hear about it in every episode.
But's best quality is the way he interacts with Megan. They're both cynics and communicate best through sarcasm It bonds them in a odd but funny way. I always look forward to Bud and Megan's first interactions over the latest dead body. I know I'm going to smile.
Worst storyline of the year: Kate Murphy dates Megan's ex. Ugh. I dreaded every scene and it seemed to play out forever. The problem was that both Megan and Kate are smart women and Tod seemed like an arrogant jerk. Kate deserves a better story and now that Tod is off to California I'm hoping she gets it.
The inconsistent family: Lacey's an okay kid but a little goes a long way. I enjoyed her the most during the episode at the horse stable because she had riding experience and something to offer the investigation. But watching Lacey being a whiny teenager, although realistic, is simply dull. More often than not she feels forced into the storyline. If we only saw her half the time I think she'd be far more entertaining.
Megan's mom is the odd duck. They clash over Megan's dead father's suicide. They clash over Lacey. They clash of everything. Again, it's the same dynamic played out over and over again and there's nothing interesting in that.
I like most of the characters on Body of Proof but it feels as though the writers are still searching for how to make these relationships work. Their storylines seem random instead of planned and I'm hoping the show becomes more focused as we head towards the rest of the season.
Overall grade: C+
C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.