The new TNT drama "King & Maxwell" (Monday, 10 p.m.) is the latest in the network's string of ampersand-laden criminal justice-seeking duos: "Rizzoli & Isles," "Franklin & Bash," "South & Land" (okay, that last one is delusional wishful thinking).
This one stars the always likable Jon Tenney, most recently Fitz on "The Closer," as Sean King, and Rebecca Romijn from "X-Men" as Michelle Maxwell. King and Maxwell are both failed Secret Service agents who now make their living as squabbling, wise-cracking private detectives in D.C. (You may recognize the characters from the bestselling crime novels of David Baldacci. Or, if you're me, you may not.)
The show has a decent balance of action and humor (it opens with a car chase -- Maxwell chasing a stolen bus driven by a giant beaver) and at least in the pilot, a more complicated plot than you get (or want) in most of these character-driven basic cable procedurals. The arduous first episode involves murder, far-fetched conspiracies and the sexiest of sexy plot elements -- defense contracts.
And this won't be a shock: King and Maxwell butt heads quite often with two FBI agents who are, of course, total jerks and not nearly as sharp as our breezy detectives. But the show also has Ryan Hurst, known to many as Opie from "Sons of Anarchy," as a sort of savant -- and it looks like he'll be a regular. That's one for the plus column.
I'm not sold based on the pilot, but the chemistry is good enough between Tenney and Romijn that I'll check out at least one more episode before granting it a regular spot in my DVR rotation.