For years, Dick Wolf has shown a remarkable ability to drop immediately interesting characters into his “Law & Order” series and hold the interest of the viewer. “D.C.,” which is peopled with the underlings’ underlings, attempts to demonstrate how a collection of 20-somethings can find meaning in their lives inside the Beltway, but there’s not a character here with even a remotely interesting occupation. Geared for the WB’s young viewers, “D.C.” offers neither sexiness nor intrigue to pull them in.
Wolf put some good shows on the air in the 1990s — “Crime & Punishment” and “Players” head the class — but beyond “Law & Order,” none have taken hold.
This series is his first away from the crime-solving genre, and debut episode tries hard to make the most out of a character who writes letters for a Virginia senator and his lobbyist buddy. Yawn.
In the debut episode, Mason Scott (Gabriel Olds) sees his big chance to make a name for himself by altering a land development plan that could possibly endanger a particular type of squirrel.
Armed with data from that lobbyist pal and roommate Pete Komisky (Mark-Paul Gosselaar), he attempts to cut to the chase and save the day for his boss, only to infuriate his immediate supervisor and get himself fired.
Subplot involves the attractive Sarah Logan (Kristanna Loken), a junior producer — she appears to make phone calls for a living — at the all-news station CNL. She and boyfriend Lewis Freeman (Daniel Sunjata), who works for a judge and shows off his legal know-how at a dry cleaners, need a place to stay and before long they’re all brought together in one house, courtesy of Scott’s sister Finley (Jacinda Barrett), who has dropped out of grad school to stake her claim among politicos.
This is no “Friends.” Scripting is in line with “Felicity” angst, but “D.C.” is the post-“Felicity” nightmare: dull jobs, too many roommates and a feeling that public humiliation is the God-given right of whoever has hired you. The two directors, Todd Holland and Michael Fields, keep the action moving, but flaws in the material are too numerous to cover.