Pilot: Ringer (drama)
Writers: Eric Charmelo and Nicole Snyder
Logline: A troubled young woman on the run hides out by living the life of her wealthy twin sister, until she learns her sibling’s life has a bounty on it as well.
Cast: Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Ioan Gruffudd (Fantastic Four), Nestor Carbonell (Lost), Mike Colter (The Good Wife), Tara Summers (Damages)
Director: Richard Shepard (Criminal Minds)
Bridget Cafferty (Gellar)
Siobhan Marx (Gellar)
Victor Machado, FBI agent (Carbonell)
Jimmy, Wyoming cop
Andrew Marx, Siobhan’s husband (Gruffudd)
Gemma, Siobhan’s BFF (Summers)
Henry, Gemma’s husband
Malcolm Howard, Bridget’s sponsor
Juliet, Andrew’s teenage daughter
Bodaway Macawi, The Big Bad
This is the perfect project for Gellar’s return to TV. The tight script is a real thriller that will deservedly put Gellar back in the spotlight as she plays twin sisters Siobhan and Bridget. What’s amazing about this project is that it’s equal parts crime thriller and domestic drama, and all the story lines are interweaved seamlessly and smartly.
On the crime thriller side, Bridget is a recovering drug addict who witnessed a brutal slaying at a strip club in which she was employed and is in protective custody ahead of crime boss Bodaway Macawi’s trial, for which she serves as the key witness. If convicted, Macawi faces the death penalty.
Bridget escapes and flees Wyoming, heading for an East Hampton reunion with her estranged sister, Siobhan, who on paper has it all: handsome and successful husband Andrew (Gruffudd) and multiple homes filled with fine art and designer furniture.
After all signs point to Siobhan drowning in the ocean — only one of her trademarked designer scarves remains — Bridget opts to assume her identity instead of risking being found by the FBI and Macawi — but eventually finds that Siobhan also had her share of enemies out to permanently silence her as well.
On the domestic side, Bridget shares a tight bond with her Narcotics Anonymous sponsor, Malcolm, and, acting as Siobhan, also hits it off with her sister’s best friend, Gemma, whose husband Henry is having an affair with the real Siobhan. To make matters worse, Bridget also finds herself falling for Andrew, who wasn’t aware that his wife had a twin sister. Confused? Don’t be. The script is easy to follow and moral and ethical boundaries are explored — and broken — in a compelling fashion.
The dialogue is sharp and witty and, even without the words of Joss Whedon and company, will be perfect for Gellar’s classic Buffy-like dry and sarcastic delivery. Of all the high-profile pilots looking for a spot on the fall and midseason schedule, CBS’ Ringer is the most promising among them. As Buffy would say, it’s dark and twisty and just what you’d want for your favorite Slayer.
Oh, and there’s room for a lesbian role: Henry and Gemma’s nanny is a lesbian.
Weekly Pilot outlook: Better than two Xanders.