Tuesday, September 25

Cane TV First Episode Review

CBS Tuesday Nights 10pm

"Cane" is about a Cuban-American family that runs a sugar cane business and rum. They have different parts of the business. Jimmy Smitts plays Alex, the family's adoptive son from "Pedro Pan" thing. Children from Cuba where brought to America to meet up with their parents but Alex never did so the Duque family adopted him. Hector Elizondo plays Pancho, the head of the family. He plans tot retire because he is dying. Hector is a great actor. He gives the power to Alex, instead of his eldest son Frank ("Lost" Nestor Carbonell), which makes him angry. There is conflict between the new sons. Not as much with the third son (Eddie Matos) is more concerned with his club. Alex married Pancho's daughter Isbael. There is a rival company, a gringo asshole that is dying. Lee Tergesen makes a lovely appearance as his son. Frank sleeps with his sister. Alex and Isabell has three kids: a teenage girl, a little boy and a teenage boy Jaime--pronounced High-Meh (Michael Trevino) has a gringa girlfriend and blows off MIT to go to the army and plans to marry his girl.

There is a plot line I don't get about a young girl being kidnapped and Alex killing the assaulter and another one comes to bug them--Quinoes, who Alex has killed and his death comes to haunt him in later episodes. Alex suspects the competitor. Ironic is that the two head fathers are dying. The whole show shifts from completely Cuban to completely gringo American generic crime drama. It is a mix of "Brothers and Sisters" and "Sopranos." Alex has his reasons but he is not completely shady. The show is authentic Cuban. I feel some similarities to my family, the overlapping talking and huge family, I'm not Cuban. I felt a bit alienated, maybe Caucasian audiences will feel the same. The flashbacks were a bit hard to understand. I think it will be a jumbled mess with intense music. Jimmy Smitts does bring 100% to the show and so does the rest of the cast. The whole cast feels a bit pretentious while Elizondo feels welcoming. "Sugar is the new oil," is probably the newest catchphrase. Some dude says it to David Letterman on the late show.

When I watch a show that has a lot of Spanish, I try not to look at the subtitles because I get confused. What they say is not exactly what they write. It is translated culturally. For example, one instance Frank calls Alex an "Aprechado" which means Opportunist but the subtitle said 'Weasel.' So it's loose to say the least. Also the Subtitles are unusually huge in this show. Probably to get non-Spanish speakers into it.