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TV Review: Human Target – “Christopher Chance”

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The finale has arrived! While there is no word yet on a second season, I certainly hope one will be coming. Why? As suspected, the end of season one turned out to be a cliffhanger. We may have known in advance some of the story that is told in the finale, but there are still certainly gaps to be filled in.

As for this season as a whole, for twelve straight episodes viewers have watched the adventures of Christopher Chance (Mark Valley), who protects those whose lives are in quite certain danger. For the most part, these are high profile clients, such as a celebrity (“Corner Man”) or perhaps a person of exalted lineage (“Victoria”). Little has been known about the protector himself, other than the fact that he has a troubled past and a woman who defined his life.

Amy Acker, whom Joss Whedon fans know well from her work on Angel and Dollhouse, plays Katherine Walters in the finale, the woman mentioned above. She is apparently a witness to somebody getting shot. The episode contains a lot of flashbacks where we learn how Walters and Chance met as well as get to see a meeting of Chance and the man who trained him. With the jumps in time the story gets bit tricky, but I’ll give it my best shot.

First of all, in the present, there is a team looking not unlike a SWAT team who take Chance, Winston (Chi McBride), and Guerrero (Jackie Earle Haley) hostage. Why? The interrogator states they have something which doesn’t belong to them. This actor is a familiar face. Let’s just say that with Lennie James back as Baptiste, it’s a mini Jericho reunion.

Flashbacks then turn to Chance posing as a prosecutor who tells Winston he would like five minutes to talk to Katherine. His real objective, of course, is to ensure her death. Everything changes after he figures out she is only a pawn in a much larger game. Chance changes teams, opting to keep her safe. It’s quite a tricky thing, especially with Baptiste willing to do what Chance refuses to.

Even Guerrero cannot stop him. Remember, this is prior to when the protection agency formed. Armand Assante runs the assassin firm, and isn’t happy about proceedings. Not at all.

Lee Majors is the guy who tries to help Chance keep Katherine out of harm’s way. From him, the origins of “Christopher Chance” are discovered. The name is much more than just the person. Think of a superhero whose legend lives on no matter what. You’ll have to watch to find out what happens to Majors’ character.

The final moments in the episode are thrilling, if a bit odd. I have to wonder why that partnership formed when a phone call or two might have fixed the problem. Still, it sets up a new season by leaving viewers with all sorts of questions about what will happen next.

The ball is now in the corner of FOX executives. No official cancellation yet, but no pickup either. Human Target is no longer getting its feet wet, and its got lots of action with a cast whose work is seriously compelling. Only time will tell.

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