"Tru Calling" was a television show that ran for 1 season on Fox before being abruptly canceled prior to the airing of the first six completed episodes of what was shaping up to be a phenomenal second season. Well, at least it fared better than Firefly. Sorry, it still hurts. The show starred girl-of-my-dreams Eliza Dushku (of Buffy/Angel fame) as a morgue attendant, Tru Davies, who gains a unique supernatural power. The dead bodies she attends occasionally ask her for help and she finds herself instantly transported back to the moment she awoke that morning and charged with saving the life of the corpse she just encountered. It's a simple set-up for what proves to be a formulaic but very entertaining show that deserved much better than it got.
Honestly, Eliza Dushku herself is reason enough to go out and buy this. The girl is just a joy to watch onscreen. She has girl-next-door likability, great acting talent, plenty of attitude, and a damn sexy voice. Also: quite pretty, yes? But the writing for "Tru Calling" is also top-notch and manages to keep things interesting at all times in spite of the episodic nature of the stories. You'll be surprised at how inventive and compelling some of the stories are. One finds Tru reliving the same day four separate times as every night after saving the life, another corpse turns up as a result and sends her back to the start. Others have her juggling her duty with finagling her ne'er-do-well of a brother out of whatever idiotic situation he's gotten himself into or attempting to save people close to her. Yet another has her charged with saving two lives on the same day, a monumental task considering the amount of investigation, resourcefulness, and work it takes to save the life of one person you don't know anything about aside from cause of death. The supporting cast is also outstanding including Tru's boss (a The Lord of the Rings nerd), and her exceptionally dysfunctional family. Just how dysfunctional? I couldn't possibly tell you without massive spoilers.
The real story for the show begins when Tru finds out that she has an opposite. Jason Priestly takes the show by storm as Jack, a man whose day rewinds every time our heroine's does and is charged with making sure those on a collision course with death stay that way. Tru is then forced to examine her place in the world and wonder if she is, as Jack says, doing more harm than good by disrupting the natural order of things. The come the bombshells. The last part of Season 1 gathers massive momentum that carries over into Season 2 and you curse Fox's stupidity for killing yet another great show at it's creative peak when the last episode is done and you're left pondering what could have been.
"Tru Calling" was an outstanding series for fans of supernatural television and I'm still ticked off that it's gone. Instead we got endless "reality" shows -each more inane and derivative than the last-, more and more formulaic crime and medical dramas (House, M.D. rocks, though), and fluff like "Medium" and "Ghost Whisperer" (no links for you!). And when we do get real deal supernatural television it's on-the-bubble shows like Reaper that are great and so you fear every week of hearing about their cancellation. This is no kind of life for a fan to live, man! Speak up about your favorite shows when those rumors start swirling. One email to the network can be a drop in an ocean of support that saves the shows you love. Check "Tru Calling" out if the notion of a macabre, heroic version of Groundhog Day starring Miss Dushku appeals to you in any way.
4 1/2 stars rounded up for old times sake.
I can't wait for "Dollhouse"! Look out for it.