CSI: Miami, the ”CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” sequel starring former ”NYPD Blue” players David Caruso and Kim Delaney, follows the original’s blueprint right down to using a Who song as its theme music: in this case, ”Won’t Get Fooled Again” — a bit of self-spoofing from the creators, who know we aren’t fooled by, but do hope we’ll get hooked on, their latest product. Me, I’m resisting a little. I like Caruso as leader Horatio Crane; the actor’s way with quiet anguish is suited to his role as a grim, relentless crime-scene examiner. But after that, my reservations begin.
”Miami” had its initial showcase last season in a crossover episode with the regular ”CSI,” featuring ”The West Wing”’s Emily Procter as Caruso’s costar. She was dandy — unlike her argumentative Ainsley Hayes ”Wing” character, ”CSI” Procter was terse and tensile. But then the CBS suits recruited Delaney, pushing Procter into the background.
Granted, it’s difficult to put much spin on a line like ”Grief is grief, work is work — don’t confuse the two,” but Delaney’s version of hard-boiled determination is often indistinguishable from a mild coma. It’s also too bad that the salient trait of the fine Khandi Alexander (”The Corner”) playing a coroner is that she coos sweet nothings at her corpses like ”You didn’t know what hit you, did you, sugar?” And finally, I know the producers want to convey Miami heat ‘n’ humidity, but must entire episodes be shot through a lens that makes everything seem as glowingly orange as Caruso’s hair?