TV Critics Spar With ‘Whiskey Cavalier’ Creators And Cast Over Geography And Flirtation Boundaries – TCA


David Hemingson came up with idea for ABC’s new Whiskey Cavalier when an FBI pal of his called him at 2 AM after breaking up with his girlfriend. Though he was a “gun out first through the door” kinds of guy” at the end of the day he wanted love and connection like everyone else, Hemingson said.

The high-octane, hour-long action dramedy that follows the adventures of FBI super-agent Will Chase (codename: “Whiskey Cavalier”), played by Scott Foley. Following an emotional break-up, Chase is assigned to work with bad-ass CIA operative Francesca “Frankie” Trowbridge (codename: “Fiery Tribune”), played by Lauren Cohan.

The series is shot in Prague which, one TV critic described as being eastern European. “It’s actually central Europe” corrected Cohan.

“You want to play that game with me?! I’m from France” the critic shot back, winning that round.

EP Bill Lawrence, a TCA fave, said the pilot also shot in London, Austria and Paris, which impressed test audiences – and the French critic who wondered if the rest of the series would look as expensive as the pilot.

“I’ve done 25 of these to date,” Lawrence said of his Tuesday TCA appearance, joking,  “What if I said ‘No, the rest of the show is really cheap! But we do what we can’.”

Whiskey Cavalier is a nod to one hour comedy dramas of old, Lawrence said, naming Moonlighting and Remington Steele among others.

But, in 2019, one TV critic wondered if the flirtation bordered on, or crossed over the line to, harassment. The critic noted that ,in the clip reel shown before the Q&A, Foley’s character said he was going to win over Cohan’s. followed by a scene in which they are in the same bed and she “feels the need to show she is armed.”

Lawrence insisted those two moments in the clip reel were not related.

Even so, put your money on that clip reel not surfacing again without changes.

Foley’s wife, Marika Dominczyk will appear in the series – as will Lawrence’s wife Christa Miller, because, Lawrence joked, she is “super talented” and he got lonely. 

Whiskey Cavalier became a running joke at ABC’s May Upfront presentation when, during  Jimmy Kimmel’s traditional Upfront 7th inning stretch, joked “we finally came up with a title that’s worse than Cougar Town…Should we cancel it now or should we wait until you leave the room?”

When ABC Entertainment chief Channing Dungey returned to the stage, she announced, “When we’re celebrating Season 10 of Whiskey Cavalier I’m going to bring Jimmy back out there and we’re going to talk about it!”

Channing left the network a few months later, joining Netflix, as Vice President of Original Content.

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