I started watching Mysteries of Laura mostly by accident. I saw it had Debra Messing, who I remembered as the vaguely annoying Grace Adler from Will & Grace, and decided to watch one episode.
I was hooked.
Premise: Laura Diamond is an NYPD detective who is smart, unorthodox, and a recent divorcee single mom with twin sons. She juggles all the components of her life fairly well, until her ex-husband is appointed to be the police chief at her precinct.
Review: Mysteries of Laura was a great show that was sadly cancelled after two seasons, and on a cliffhanger no less! The tone was light, even though each episode was built around a murder.
The first season was truly exceptional, as the focus moved from one team member to the next. There was even spotlight on her children. The intermingled personal stories made for interesting watching, and a difference in storytelling. The second season was entirely about Laura’s love triangle. It started to pall a bit, although the writers and actors did a great job of making it super difficult to pick sides. By the end of the show, you were left truly caring about the characters.
Theme: Mysteries of Laura is a light procedural, with lots of humour thrown in. It is especially liberally peppered with feminist and equality overtones, with a distinctly multicultural cast.
Characters: The first season really developed each character, even though Laura Diamond is the principal character. You see snippets of Billy’s, Meredith’s, and Max’s lives, even if it doesn’t directly move the plot forward. It served really well to develop well-rounded characters that weren’t merely living props in Laura’s path. The second season dropped some of this focus, and the other characters took on a sort of settled quality, like their storylines were over. That was sad, because it would have been wonderful to see some growth.
Acting: I wonder why all American shows have impossibly gorgeous people, but that didn’t bias my opinion of the acting. Debra Messing was magnificent, because the lady is one glamorous woman in real life, and here she comes across as a harassed mother of twins perfectly. She wears oversized shirts over jeans, and she is truly fantastic. The others played great supporting characters, and it was fun to watch the quirks they incorporated into their roles. Also, being an Indian, it was pretty thrilling to watch Janina Gavankar on a mainstream American show.
What I liked: Everything. Josh Lucas + Laz Alonso + Neal Bledsoe = Tremendous eye candy.
What I disliked: It got cancelled far too soon.
I truly hope another network picks it up, but I doubt it will retain that wonderful chemistry in a new avatar.