Picks and Pans Review: Missing

UPDATED 08/02/2004 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 08/02/2004 at 01:00 AM EDT

Lifetime (Saturdays, 10 p.m. ET)

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Last season this series had a toll-free title, 1-800-MISSING, but it was still no bargain. A radical revamping hasn't improved it any.

Jess Mastriani (Caterina Scorsone), psychic finder of missing persons, is now a full-fledged FBI agent in Washington, D.C. Her old partner (Gloria Reuben) has been transferred far away, so Jess finds herself paired with Nicole Scott (Vivica A. Fox), a sexy maverick who dresses to kill. You've seen those tough cops who don't do things by the book? In the season premiere, Special Agent Scott illustrated her disdain for pesky regulations by tossing the FBI manual out the car window.

The other new characters are John Pollock (Justin Louis), Jess and Nicole's glory-hog boss, and handsome evidence expert Antonio Cortez (Mark Consuelos from All My Children). You won't forget their faces because the show is terribly fond of tight closeups.

The scripts are typically no subtler than the direction. Jess has a vision of a blind woman: Justice is blind! It must be a judge! The July 24 episode takes an idea with potential—kidnappers target the jurist's daughter but grab the wrong girl—and ruins it by piling on the melodrama.

DRAMA

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