On January 21st of this year, Jared Padalecki’s new show, Walker, premiered on the CW Channel. (You might know seasoned CW star Jared Padalecki from his long term role as Sam Winchester on the show Supernatural, which ran for 15 seasons.) We’re now three episodes into the season, and I have mixed feelings. Everything in this article is going to be pretty vague, but this is the Official Spoiler Warning just in case.
The story centers around the family of Cordell Walker, a Texas Ranger whose wife died 11 months ago. He’s been gone on a case for ten of those months, leaving his two children in the care of his parents and brother. His daughter, Stella, is a rebellious 16 year-old who has a lot of resentment towards her dad. August, Walker’s 14 year-old son, wants to keep everyone happy and find a way to reconnect with both his parents. Walker is returning to Austin to try to settle into his old job with a new partner and to repair his fracturing relationships with his family.
I understand that Walker is a new show, and needs time to get its footing. I think that the chemistry between actors is palpable, but not fully being applied yet. For example, Walker’s brother in the show, played by Keegan Allen, has amazing chemistry with Jared. They even look somewhat alike. The brotherly energy is there, the show just needs to learn how to write a brotherly relationship. The show often repeats character plots in the first two episodes. For example, Walker and his daughter, Stella, get into an argument, then she breaks the rules and he yells at her, and by the end of the episode, they have a heart to heart that revolves around her mother to smooth everything over. By episode three, the most recent episode, that pattern has seemed to subside a little bit.
The first episode also had a lot of odd cuts happening during scenes. When Walker and his partner were chasing down a bad guy, there were a lot of jump cuts so it felt like you weren’t even watching the majority of the fight scene. It made it kind of difficult to watch. Along with this, the dialogue in the first episode was very unrealistic and seemed like it was trying too hard. They [the writers] need to write how people interact in real life, not exaggerated versions of those interactions.
That being said, episode three did feel like the writers had found a rhythm. I don’t know if the show is getting better, or my expectations are getting lower, but either way, this week’s episode was more enjoyable. The characters felt like they were more comfortable with each other, and it felt more natural in general. There were still moments where you couldn’t hear a character in some places because of loud background noise, but Walker is learning how to operate as a show.
I’m proud of Jared Padalecki for not only starring in this show but for also producing it. I’ll probably stick around to see how Walker plays out, and I hope that this trend of improvement sticks around. I recommend giving Walker a chance, especially if you’re looking for some nice cowboy fun!