Warning: Mild Spoilers Discussed
You had us at Warren Kole and Michael Ealy. Seriously. Any show that pairs these two up as odd couple detectives, scratching their 7-year partnership itch intrigues us. You mix in the magic that USA Network seems to have found for all its shows – a dash or more of comedy with some serious drama – and you’ve got a show we want to watch. We’ve seen the pilot and got a chance to take part in a press call with Michael Ealy who talked about Common LawÂ and his character. He says his chemistry with Warren Kole was immediate, they “just clicked.Â I think there’s a certain connection that we both have to the material and our respective roles that end up somehow lining up perfectly.” But they couldn’t be more different, as evidenced by the fact that they’re forced into couples counseling by their new age captain, the wonderful Jack McGeeÂ who Ealy calls “a phenomenal cast mate and friend and brother to have on this journey.” Their psychiatrist? Sonya Walger‘s Dr. Ryan, who Ealy’s worked withÂ twice before. He says he “take(s) pride in the fact that I was instrumental in her being on the show. She’s a force to be reckoned with.”Â Their counseling is a group therapy session and the other couples act as “a Greek chorus” of sorts and their issues definitely “come out in therapy” even though “it’s so hard to be vulnerable.” Sign us up.
Actor: Michael Ealy from Think Like a Man, Sleeper Cell and The Good Wife
Common Law Character: Detective Travis Marks. Michael Ealy describes his character as “a hard-nosed detective, but also has a lot of heart and he knows how to deal with people. And he is, you know, one of the most likeable characters I think I’ve ever played.”
Common Law Assessment: Travis is a real ladies man, but that’s no shocker. He’s sexy, charming and he carries a gun. However, underneath the surface, there’s a depth that’s intriguing. Marks grew up in a series of foster homes — 18 to be exact — and according to Ealy, that’s where a lot of his character’s issues stem from: “I would say one of the more interesting parts about Travis is his fear of commitment and abandonment. Those two make him a little bit more complex than he seems. So it was more interesting and fun to play him, because there were more layers than just what we see on the surface.”
As for Travis’ relationship with his partner, Detective Wes Mitchell (Warren Kole), things are pretty turbulent. Maybe if Travis learned to apologize, admit when he was wrong, or stop dating ladies he works with, there would be less yelling, accusations and physical altercations. But what would be the fun in that? Ealy looked to the movies for inspiration into playing his character. “I made him a mix of Axel Foley [Beverly Hills Cop] and John McClain [Die Hard]. And when you watch Eddie Murphy and Axel Foley, he’s in control at all times. Like he’s just laid back and cool and comfortable in his own skin, and I really tried to bring that to the character of Travis.”
The Crush Factor: Where to start? Just look at Michael Ealy. He’s beyond beautiful. One of his best features — his piercing blue eyes. We can’t get enough of them. His hotness factor is upped even more now that’s he’s on Common Law and he’s showing us he has some serious comedy skills. He almost always plays such intense characters, so we love how he gets to mix the funny in with the drama on this show. “It was a job that I was actually able to learn and I’m proud of that. And, you know, the comedy has made it the most difficult job I’ve ever had. Because being funny five days a week for 15 hours is the most difficult thing anyone could ever ask of anyone. It’s so hard.” Being funny does have its rewards, at least that’s what Ealy thinks. “I’ve always been told by all of my female friends and even the women in my family, that comedy, making a woman laugh, is sexy. So I hope that ultimately, you know, that will be what works for me in Common Law. You know, at the end of the day, listen, Travis is not dominant. So I need people to understand that this is a different role.”
Actor: Warren Kole of The Avengers,Â The Chicago Code, 24, and Into the West
Common Law Character: Lawyer turned Detective, Wes Mitchell
Common Law Assessment: Strictly by-the-book, Wes Mitchell gave up a successful law career and his marriage to pursue a career in law enforcement, although we don’t yet know what precipitated that decision. Responsible and compulsively organized he is the polar opposite of his partner.
The Crush Factor: We like a man in a suit and Warren Kole is one snappy dresser on this show. Our crush is recent but extends back to 2011, where we met him on a little show we loved called The Chicago Code. He plays a cop well, although this is a completely different role than we’ve seen him in before. But what’s not to like? He’s got the healthy tan of a man who spends his free time outdoors, a piercing gaze, and great presence. Oh, and did we mention he’s nice to look at? We’re happy he’s sharing the screen here with the awesome Michael Ealy and can’t wait to see both the good and the bad this partnership brings.
The 90-minute Common Law premiere airs Friday, May 11th at 10/9c on USA Network.
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