Unforgettable…….. Literally!

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Stop me if this sounds familiar: A former police detective who left the force after being unable to get over or solve the murder of a loved one is still a valuable consultant to the police because of freakish powers of observation, and is still driven by a determination to find that loved one’s killer.

It’s just possible the new cop procedural “Unforgettable,” starring Poppy Montgomery (“Without A Trace”), will be the female equivalent of “The Mentalist.” With a twist.

Did I just hear you wonder, “Someone has brought back ‘Monk’?” No, instead, someone has given Mr. Monk a sex change and replaced the humor of his show with a simmering romance. The series, which has its premiere on Thursday on STAR World, is called “Unforgettable,” and because the structure and plot points are so familiar, whether it succeeds will depend largely on the appeal of its star, Poppy Montgomery.

And she’s reasonably appealing, at least in the previews. Ms. Montgomery knows something about police work from her years as an F.B.I. agent on “Without a Trace.” Here she moves up to the central role: she is Carrie Wells, who has a bizarre ability to remember everything. You can almost hear Adrian Monk saying, “It’s a gift — and a curse.”

Montgomery plays Carrie Wells, a former detective who has a special ability and also, of course, a special curse. She has a rare condition called hyperthymesia, which allows her to recall in precise detail every moment, conversation and detail of her past. She can replay these memories, zoom in for clues and replay dialog in her head while walking around in the virtual scene-a cool trick neatly dramatized with digital technology onscreen.

As the promo suggests, when her neighbor is murdered, and Carrie is the only witness, it appears her special skills will be called upon. She doesn’t want to open herself to that painful morass again. That’s when Dylan Walsh appears as Al Burns, lead investigator in the neighbor’s murder case. It seems Al and Carrie were an item back in Syracuse; he knows her involvement would be key to solving the case. He is able to lure her back into detective work, and the chase is on.

Another well-crafted cop procedural. Providing a neatly wrapped week-to-week caseload plus an over-arching personal mystery, “Unforgettable” seems to have the formula down pat. Maybe too pat.

Unforgettable premieres, Thursday, March 8, 9PM, exclusively on STAR World!

Scare your bloody senses off!

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In recent years, the horror genre has predominantly been the dominion of the cinema. TV shows that set out to chill the blood and make the skin crawl are few and far between, with AMC’s The Walking Dead being a rare exception. Perhaps inspired by that zombie smash hit, the big networks are turning their eye to horror once more, and The River is the first new project to hit our screens. Read our preview below and let us know if you’ll be tuning in!

So what’s The River actually about? The series follows the story of Emmet Cole, a popular television personality and wildlife expert. When Cole vanishes while on a jaunt to the Amazon, his family, friends and crew embark on a rescue mission to recover their lost comrade.

At first glance, the show’s premise sounds more like an epic adventure than a creepy horror piece, but take our word for it, there’s something very nasty lurking within the rainforest, and it’s not long before things start to spiral horribly out of control.

If you’re still doubtful that The River has the potential to scare, we should perhaps mention that Oren Peli is the executive producer. Back in 2007, Peli wrote, produced and directed a little horror movie called Paranormal Activity that scared the pants off of the Western world, and you can certainly see that film’s influence on The River from the snippets and clips released so far! Peli developed the original story for The River alongside Michael R. Perry, who also played a key role in the Paranormal Activity franchise. Perry honed his thriller-writing skills on NBC’s recent mystery drama Persons Unknown and spooky Fox series Millennium, and even contributed a couple of episodes to classic kids horror series Eerie, Indiana back in the ’90s!

Michael Green also had a hand in The River‘s screenplay and boasts some strong credentials, with writing credits including this year’s Green Lantern film and episodes of Heroes and Smallville. Topping it all off, Jaume Collet-Serra – the director behind 2009 film chiller Orphan – helmed the pilot for The River too.

All in all, The River looks set to be a spectacular thrill-ride!

The River premiers Saturday, March 3, 9 PM, exclusively on STAR World!