Is it possible to have it all? If not, can you easily take over someone else’s seemingly perfect world without getting caught? Will the secrets from your past destroy you or will another set do the trick? That’s the premise of the CW’s new show Ringer, which tested one woman’s resolve to remain hidden with interesting results.
Ringer followed Bridget Kelly (Sarah Michelle Gellar) a former stripper/witness as she ran away from testifying against a violent mobster intent on killing her. She was struggling to pick up the pieces of her shattered life as she tried to recover from a brutal addiction to drugs. As she was running from FBI Agent Victor Machado (Nestor Carbonell), she traveled to New York City to visit her estranged twin sister Siobhan Martin (Gellar) for moral support and to patch up their six year rift. Bridget is shocked when Siobhan appeared to have killed herself in an effort to escape her life. (Even though it was only a ruse to go into hiding.) She made the risky choice to step into her seemingly dead sister’s identity to hide from everyone. The only one who know where she is her Narcotics Anonymous Sponsor/potential lover Malcolm Ward (Mike Colter) which puts him in great danger when the mobster Bridget was supposed to testify against is freed from prison. What Bridget didn’t bargain for was that Siobhan’s life was even more complicated than hers was. Siobhan’s marriage to businessman Andrew (Ioan Gruffudd) was hanging by a thread and her affair with her best friend’s husband Henry (Kristoffer Polaha) was close to being exposed. Someone also wants Siobhan dead as well and hired an assassin to do the job. Can Bridget hold it together while Siobhan hides and watches her sister live her life?
In terms of plot, Ringer has enough to keep audiences guessing for days to figure out what they just saw. Both Bridget and Siobhan’s lives are surrounded in enough mystery to keep things very interesting for the season. The plot seems to be like an adult version of The Lying Game but with so much more complexity for the better. Ringer demonstrated how everyone had a dual purpose that wasn’t necessarily for the better. Let’s hope that all of the hidden agendas don’t complicate the show in further episodes because that would such a shame. It’s nice to watch a show that makes you think and that doesn’t revolve around cops, lawyers or doctors.
What made the show truly work is Gellar’s impressive work in playing two very different twin sisters. Out of the two sisters, she seemed to make more of a lasting impression as the enigmatic Siobhan who was the ultimate society mean girl but kept her cards very close to the vest. Hopefully, Bridget’s storyline will evolve in such a way that she won’t continue to play the perpetual damsel in distress like she did in the premiere episode. In terms of chemistry, Gellar has more chemistry with Gruffudd and Polaha than she does with Colter. Gruffudd and Gellar share this War of the Roses type of rapport where the tension was just always below the surface. It should be interesting when the tension finally does boil over. With Polaha, Gellar demonstrates how the relationship with Henry could become a Fatal Attraction of sorts as he appeared to be stalking her in the premiere. Ringer has the potential to be a show worth watching, even though it has been mismatched with 90210 as its lead-in show. If the writers stick with the premise, this show should last for years.
Ringer premiered on September 13th and airs Tuesdays at 9:00 pm on the CW.
Verdict: A mystery that allows Gellar to be front and center where she belongs.
TV Score: 4 out of 5 stars
1 Star (Mediocre)
2 Stars (Averagely Entertaining)
3 Stars (Decent Enough to Pass Muster)
4 Stars (Near Perfect)
5 Stars (Gold Standard)