Ken Tucker
July 17, 1992 AT 04:00 AM EDT

The Human Target

type
TV Show
Current Status
In Season
run date
07/20/92
performer
Rick Springfield, Kirk Baltz
broadcaster
ABC
genre
ActionAdventure, Drama

We gave it a C-

Rick Springfield stars as Christopher Chance, a man who helps innocent people in trouble by impersonating them — and becoming a human target for their troubles. In the debut episode, Chance dons a rubber mask designed to make him look like a construction-company owner named Jay Palmer, played by I’ll Fly Away‘s Scott Paulin. Palmer thinks his competitors want not only to ruin his business but also to harm him and his family as well. Disguised as Palmer, Chance lures the bad guys into a trap.

The plot is paper-thin; much of The Human Target‘s time is spent showing us how Chance assumes another person’s identity. Working with a former special-effects expert (played by Kirk Baltz), a research assistant (Signy Coleman), and a chauffeur-bodyguard (SaMi Chester), Chance uses lots of futuristic technology while he and his team fly through the air in a rocket ship that’s only slightly smaller than the UFO in Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

The Human Target is based on an obscure DC Comics character from the 1970s and was developed for television by executive producers Paul De Meo and Danny Bilson, who previously worked on a much superior superhero TV show, The Flash. If I were a kid, I guess I’d like all the nifty disguises, but to a grown-up, The Human Target seems campy in a dumb way, with stilted dialogue and stiff action scenes. C-

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