Premiere Date and Time: Tuesday, September 25, 9pm
Network: The CW
Time Slot Competition: Dancing with the Stars, The Unit, The Biggest Loser and The Singing Bee, House
Cast: Donavon Stinson, Kyle Switzer, Missy Peregrym Allison Hossack, Tyler Labine, Andrew Airlie, Bret Harrison, Ray Wise, Rick Gonzalez, Valarie Rae Miller
Reaper, the new CW dramedy from creators Tara Butters and Michelle Fazekas, begins the day main character Sam Oliver, played by Bret Harrison (The Loop), turns 21. He wakes up on what should be a big day in his life to find his parents in a peculiarly melancholy state. It turns out that before Sam was born his parents sold his soul to the Devil. The Devil’s contract stipulates that once Sam turns 21, Lucifer takes control of the boy’s soul. Rough.
Sam, as a result of his parent’s guilt, has been brought up with almost no resistance, coming and going as he pleases. He didn’t go to college and took a crappy job at a Home Depot-esque store with his abrasive best friend Sock, played by Tyler Labine (Flyboys). Sam’s life consists of hanging out with Sock, playing video games, and fawning over co-worker/friend/unadulterated crush Andi, played by Missy Peregrym (Heroes). His 21st birthday is going as planned until Satan, played by Ray Wise (Twin Peaks, 24), shows up in human form. Satan explains to Sam the situation: He owns Sam’s soul and, unless he does the job Satan has set out for him he’s going to take his mom down to Hell. Satan wants Sam to be a Reaper and send escaped souls back to Hell. To do this, Sam is given “vessels” with which to trap these souls (a Dirt Devil vacuum, in the pilot). When he has the escaped soul in his possession, all he has to do is drop it off at the nearest gateway (the DMV, in the pilot).
Kevin Smith directed the pilot and this first episode has generated oodles of great buzz among TV critics. The show is a sci-fi comedy that taps into a badly needed niche. If audiences can find it (it’s on the CW, after all), Reaper could become a badly needed hit for the network.
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-Oscar Dahl, BuddyTV
(Photo courtesy of The CW)