Logline: Jackie Fink is a brilliant but unassuming CIA engineer and single mom who leads a team of desk jockeys into the field as secret agents. Overlooked in the workplace, their invisibility makes them perfect for the CIA’s most covert missions.
Cast: Toni Collette, Kimberly Hebert Gregory, Rob Huebel, Dana Powell, Peter Cambor, Parvesh Cheena, Ayden Mayeri, Jamey Sheridan
Creators: Lindsey Shockley (W / EP), Kenya Barris (EP), Toni Collette (EP), David Gordon Green (D)
Studios: ABC Studios TV, Pacific Standard
This pilot charmed me from the get-go. I absolutely loved Spy, and Unit Zero uses a similar underdog setup to get us engaged. We’ve got likeable heroes, high stakes, a strong goal-oriented structure, and crackling dialogue. What’s not to like?
That said, there are issues that could have been tackled with a rewrite. While Jackie and her underdog colleagues decide to find the hacker who stole the CIA’s asset data, I couldn’t help but think that elsewhere in the CIA, others must be working on the exact same mission. Indeed, others that the CIA deems more capable of tackling such a crisis. It felt like a bit of a plot hole to not see this activity at all.
A larger (and potentially more problematic) issue is this: Could Unit Zero not just have been a feature? Throughout the read, I couldn’t shake the nagging feeling that this was a feature script repurposed as a pilot. That doesn’t bode well.
I think the “Ten Days in the Valley” page is mixing up two pilots: the logline and Paula Patton are from “Somewhere Between,” a different series. Ten Days in the Valley is about an overworked TV producer and is led by Kyra Sedgwick.