Special Ops: Lioness Season 1
review by Bobby Blakey
Tyler Sheridan has had an insanely impressive career with writing films like Sicario and Hell or High Water along with creating the hit series Yellowstone and its spin-off 1883 and 1923 along with co-creating Tulsa King and Mayor of Kingstown. His latest series Special Ops: Lioness tackles a different kind of world and stars Zoe Saldaña, Laysa De Oliveira, Michael Kelly, Morgan Freeman and Nicole Kidman. Could this series bring more of the same intrigue, depth and action or will it fail in its mission?
Special Ops: Lioness follows the life of Joe while she attempts to balance her personal and professional life as the tip of the CIA's spear in the war on terror. The Lioness Program, overseen by Kaitlyn Meade and Donald Westfield, enlists an aggressive Marine Raider named Cruz to operate undercover alongside Joe among the power brokers of State terrorism in the CIA's efforts to thwart the next 9/11.
Not sure what I thought this show was going to be, but it ended up being the opposite of what I expected and not in a bad way. They show format is very much in line with shows like Seal Team which is a good thing. The structure moves through two worlds of espionage and personal lives. Here the team and more focused on Cruz and what she is going through to get to where she is and the mission at hand. While Saldana is walking the line of both, and she is really the only one we get to see the drama of her balancing her family as well. This works better so not to bog down the overall story and mission yet still exploring how this work affects those around her.
The initial set up is pretty simple but wastes no time in getting us in on the
action and following both of these women on their journey. As they clash it showcases some harsh training to get Cruz ready and to see if she can make it in this line of work. Knowing that these kinds of things are likely to happen makes you wonder how anyone can survive that, but also see how it changes someone. As harsh as it is, it does mesh the team better together in a way that no other bond could. I love the team dynamic and not forcing in the typical Hollywood headbutting that just isn’t necessary especially for them to be able to work together.
Each episode builds to something heavier coming together to the culmination of their mission which is handled well. There are elements that might not be as exciting as audiences are used to in the world of fiction as it tries to ground it in reality and that’s often times a little more abrupt. Even with that it builds some good tension that sucks you in keeping you guessing if they will be able to pull it off and what ramifications it will have on the world.
Sheridan has yet another great show on his hands that I hope gets another season, but choose to change up missions and characters within so the other members of the team get more time to shine.
Grab your copy of Special Ops: Lioness available now on Blu-ray and DVD from Paramount Home Entertainment.