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TV Detail: My Own Worst Enemy review—Series Premiere

October 13, 2008  |  11:30pm
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Slater. Christian Slater. You've at least seen the previews by now. In My Own Worst Enemy, the star of Heathers plays both international spy Edward Albright and his regular guy alter ego Henry Spivey. The dual personalities are kept at bay through mind manipulation by the unnamed government organization running the program. Except in the series premiere, something's gone wrong, and he's flipping back and forth at the most inopportune times.

It's all very True Lies, mixing the day-to-day grind of soccer games and sitting next to fat guys in coach on the way to Akron, Ohio, and Bond-like daliances with former KGB spies that end with a cigarette and a bullet through her head. (When she gets too sappy before trying to assassinate him, he dryly replies, "Let's not let an act of deception turn into an act of self-deception.")

But where Bond has gotten good again as Daniel Craig shucks off cavalier cool for a little more emotional complexity and depth, My Own Worst Enemy strips the humanity from Edward and deposits it all in Henry. Edward can be as smooth and callous as Roger Moore but the contrast with his family-man self keeps him from becoming too cartoonish. It's a neat little trick aimed at bringing good old fashioned espionage to the small screen for the first time since Alias. And Slater might have the range to pull it off.

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