Move over “E.R.,” NBC has found a new way to combine
several intense, highly stressful situations into an hour lo ng
drama that will leave viewers questioning, “Does this really
happen?” This show is the compelling drama “LAX,”
and it is a welcome addition to Monday night television.
“LAX” revolves around the hectic Los Angeles
International Airport, and the daily chaos which arises from
passengers, staff and even baggage. The series literally commences
with a bang. The current director of LAX commits suicide by
standing in the path of a departing jet, leaving his life and
coveted position. During the same day, the airport prepares for the
arrival of the governor of California, while dealing with possible
explosives left in an abandoned suitcase. Similar to
“E.R.,” the drama also depicts micro-scale plots
associated with employees in all sections of the airport.
Because “LAX” conveys a potpourri of pandemonium,
the audience can choose which suspenseful situations to engage
themselves in. The show is anchored by the professional competition
between the runway director, Harley Random (Heather Locklear), and
the terminal director, Roger De Souza (Blair Underwood). As is
characteristic of most high-suspense dramas, the relationship
between the two is aggressive and sexual.
However, more endearing relationships form between other
characters, which will leave the audience with a sense of
attachment to vulnerable characters such as Nick (David Paetkau,
“Disturbing Behavior”), a brand-new immigrations
officer. In the pilot episode, Nick shows his inexperience by
allowing an attraction to a suspected drug smuggler get in the way
of his professional duties. Though the premise is intriguing, the
relationship borders on patronizing, and the situation portrays
Nick as possessive instead of heartwarming.
“LAX” has all the right signs of a strong program,
and can only be helped with Heather Locklear in the cast, who has
been successful in recent TV endeavors such as “Spin
City.” Providing that the writers can keep up with the
dramatic possibilities, audiences will be intrigued to see the
complexity of this familiar travel locality.