In a brief but outstanding career on TV and in pics, John Belushi was an engaging personality. His drug overdose death further enthralled the public. Wired , however, told in episodes, flashbacks and dream sequences, is relentlessly offputting.
In a fanciful, less-than-successful effort to string together the events in Belushi’s tragicomic life, Wired begins after Belushi (Michael Chiklis) has died. He rises, dressed in an autopsy gown to join another ‘spirit’, Angel Valesquez (Ray Sharkey), in a cab ride down memory lane.
The professional benchmarks in Belushi’s life are there: the Blues Bros, the comic performances on Saturday Night Live, his Hollywood films. One episode is interrupted by others, including graphic glimpses of Belushi’s cocaine habit and the devastating effect it has on his confidantes and colleagues.
Somehow, Chiklis ekes out an estimable performance as the doomed comic actor, sweating flashes of Belushi’s intensity and vulnerability.