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TV Review: Human Target – “Sanctuary”

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Redemption. Most people understand the concept. For example, turn in coupons and receive a discount on the grocery bill or restaurant check. Send in the offer (with proof or purchase, of course) and end up with a cheaper item. Things, you see, are easy to explain. People, not so much.

Christopher Chance (Mark Valley) makes his living by providing private security. Those who require his services generally have their lives in serious danger. Innocent waifs? Hardly, but they are often targets of worse ilk. Take John Gray — he has to head for the hills of Canada to escape his past. Too bad his former gang of thieves is hot on the trail. Where does Gray end up? At a monastery. While there is not too much of a problem getting Chance inside, under cover as a new monk, the trick will be whether or not Chance can save Gray without anybody getting killed in the process.

The tension is high in this episode, as always. I do like the idea of Winston sweating over trying to defuse a bomb after the detonator has been pulled. Guerrero has one of the best lines when he mentions having to go with one's gut rather than a step by step instruction process. Watching to see whether or not the task is accomplished makes for nice viewing.

At last viewers are being given more insight into what makes Chance and his cronies tick. Winston (Chi McBride) and Guerrero (Jackie Earle Haley) could not be any more different than each other or the guy whose name is on the door, but each serves a purpose. It really does take all three to get the job done.

Winston is a retired cop, This makes him just a bit protective, which helps. For some reason, the episode writer tossed in a line about cops not shooting people and it stayed! Sheesh. They try everything possible to avoid the situation, but training means the outcome just might be needed.

Guerrero is the secret unraveler. I have yet to see anything other than this show in Haley's body of work, but his complexity and range are compelling. One keeps watching just to see what happens next, such as the final scene. It may or may not be expected, depending on how well the show and its characters are understood. The person involved makes the action likely, but the reason leads to one of the major storylines about a secret. Only by watching the entire episode does it make sense.

Chance has a mysterious past, to be sure. There is a woman named Katherine, a former client. I get the impression she is a major reason why Chance works so hard to stay in business. While the actual case is a mystery for now, some parts can be worked out. It didn't end well. Katherine is possibly dead, or she just might not have recovered from whatever the outcome. Someone is outraged on her behalf; who that is remains to be seen.

I get the feeling this storyline will take up most of the season, however long that is. Usually, first-year shows are about 13 episodes. Four have aired already. Katherine would be a good catalyst for bringing back Emanuelle Vaugier and Sean Maher. The FBI agent and reporter are useful when it comes to finding out information.

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