‘Walker’ Revises a Cop-Show Legend, Unconvincingly: TV Review

  • Variety
‘Walker’ Revises a Cop-Show Legend, Unconvincingly: TV Review
The CBS drama “Walker, Texas Ranger” — co-created by eventual Oscar-winner Paul Haggis and airing from 1993 to 2001 — was foundational to the myth of Chuck Norris. Sure, the actor had been in plenty of martial arts films before, but the idea of Norris as all-powerful that flourished in corny online jokes was nourished by hundreds of weekly episodes depicting hand-to-hand combat as the tool of justice in the Lone Star State.

It was a formula that would seem to resist modernization, both because its earnestness is out of vogue in cynical times and because this is an especially precarious moment to launch a big-tent show anchored in the world of law enforcement. And “Walker,” the CW’s reboot starring Jared Padalecki, seems in its pilot trapped between old and new, between simply being an old-school network drama and commenting on police-show tropes. Its first outing seems unsteady and uncertain, surprisingly so for
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