This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2015, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
The story of how "Battle Creek" (Sunday, 9 p.m., CBS/Ch. 2) got on the CBS schedule is more interesting than the show itself. Twelve years ago, "Breaking Bad" creator Vince Gilligan wrote the script, and no one bought it.
After "Breaking Bad" hit, CBS got interested. But Gilligan was busy with that show and "Better Call Saul." So CBS and Sony pitched it to "House" creator David Shore.
Gilligan said he got a call telling him that CBS "is interested in revisiting it, and David Shore is interested in working on it."
"Sony called me up and said, 'Vince Gilligan desperately wants to work with you,'" Shore joked.
So "Battle Creek" is an old idea by Gilligan, who isn't much involved in the show. It's Shore's baby now and it's OK.
It's a familiar premise: mismatched cop partners. The twist here is that it's set in Battle Creek, Mich.
Det. Russ Agnew (Dean Winters) is world-weary and cynical; he reluctantly teams with FBI special agent Milton Chamberlain (Josh Duhamel), a super-handsome, super-upbeat guy who charms his way through life.
The crimes they tackle beginning with a drug-related double homicide in Sunday's premire are serious; the show mines comedy from the partnership. Just as umpteen shows have done before.
"Battle Creek" isn't bad. There are far worse ways to spend an hour in front of the TV.
It's just not particularly compelling.