Exciting news for starving Western fans, CBS is aiming to combine modern crime drama with outlaw justice.
The network, along with executive producer, Anthony Zuiker is developing the upcoming series – titled Desperado.
No casting or timeframe information is available, but with CSI veteran Anthony Zuiker producing, along with relative unknowns Matthew Weinberg and Kyle Ward, TV fans have reason to be excited.
Currently, Ward is the only writer known to be working on the show – for now.
With the notable exception of FX’s Justified, few have tried to adapt the down-home feel and shoot first attitude of 50s and 60s shows like Gunsmoke and Wanted: Dead or Alive for 21st century audiences. Justified‘s recent success on cable may have spurred CBS to give it a try on network TV.
While comparisons to Fox’s effort may be unavoidable, the two series are unlikely to share more than premise – Desperado’s CSI pedigree will probably make it lighter and more action-oriented. This may prove to be a strength rather than a weakness – after all, Steve McQueen’s character didn’t stop to ponder the subtle morality of law enforcement while aiming down a short-barrel Winchester.
Writers for the new series will have to work hard to differentiate Desperado from the other procedural crime dramas on network TV. Art direction will be equally important, since even with the Texas setting, today’s San Antonio doesn’t exactly scream OK Corral.
There’s a lot of competition out there, even within the bounds of the same network. The CSI trifecta, Blue Bloods, and the revival of Hawaii Five-O will all be competing for time slots and mindshare, to say nothing of more exotic procedurals like Criminal Minds and Medium. Fox’s new action/comedy cop show The Good Guys is based and shot in Dallas, but low ratings are leaving a second season in doubt.
Screen Rant will be watching for cast info and a timeframe for Desperado‘s pilot.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter