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Well, I suppose I mainly wanted to check this out because it stars Nathan Fillion. But the show turns out to be interesting enough to continue watching on its own merits. Fillion plays a guy named Alex Tully, whose wife, Kathryn (Amy Acker) was apparently kidnapped on their anniversary. He receives a special phone, on which he gets a call telling him to go to Key West, and not call the cops or anything. He shows up late, unfortunately, and misses the orientation. I really would've liked to see that orientation....

Well, what it was about is a race. A secret, illegal, cross-country road race. The prize is $32 million, which apparently comes from private donors. So I suppose this race is just the sort of thing rich people do to amuse themselves, not really caring about the law, or whose lives they may be ruining. Anyway, Tully doesn't care about the prize money, he's in it to get his wife back. And while some of the other contestants don't seem to have been coerced into joining the race, Tully isn't the only one with a more personal, desperate motivation to win.

There's a woman named Corinna Wiles, who isn't actually in the race, but she forces Tully to take her on as a partner. He's distrustful of her, and for good reasons; most of what she tells him early on are lies. But he'll accept her once he learns the truth, by the end of the pilot episode (so it's not exactly a spoiler). When she was a kid, 27 years ago, she was kidnapped as motivation for her parents to enter the race. And they died just before reaching the finish line, so now she's after revenge against the people behind the race (which has, apparently, been going on pretty much since the invention of cars). There's also a guy who works for the people behind the race, Allan James, from whom Corinna stole a flash drive which has valuable information on it. And if his bosses find out he lost it, he could be in big trouble. This gives Tully and Corinna a certain degree of power over him. Plus, he can't hurt Tully, because apparently someone wanted him in the race pretty badly. And it doesn't take too long to learn a secret about Tully's past, though we still don't know who wanted him in the race....

There's also a woman named Wendy Patrakas, who recently had a baby, named Sammy. She has apparently left Sammy at a safe house. Meanwhile, Wendy is in the race to protect him, I guess. And she seems to be on the run from an abusive husband, though we don't know much about that, yet. There was also a group of three women who basically seem to be in the race for the prize money: Leigh Barnthouse, Susan Chamblee, and Ivy Chitty. When Wendy was last getting to the first checkpoint of the race, she was given a penalty: a gun, and orders to "eliminate" Ivy. But Ivy ends up ditching her partners and joining Wendy. Leigh and Susan, however, will find a way to stay in the race, at least for awhile. And Susan has a very special reason for refusing to give up... she claims God told her they would win. Or um... the exact wording of what she said about it to Leigh is important, but I don't want to go into that.

Then there's a guy named Winston Salazar, who just got out of prison. He figured his father got him out, but that doesn't seem to be the case. He, like everyone else in the race, got one of those special phones, which give people clues to find each new checkpoint. But he wanted to get some money from his father, who abandoned him and his mother when he was a little kid. Since his father wasn't being very helpful, he went to rob his home, and was confronted by his half-brother Sean, who had no idea he had a brother. He already hated his father, and after finding out about this, he really wanted to get back at him. So he joined Winston in the race.

There's a woman named Ellie Laird, who's in the race with her husband, Rob, who is in the army, and just got back from Iraq. It seems that his unit is heading back soon, so he's AWOL to be in this race, though he doesn't know that. And he will be very upset when he finds out Ellie kept his messages from him, because she was afraid of him dying, apparently. (Actually, in the final filmed episode we begin to see that Ellie has other secrets.) And there's an astrophysicist named John Trimble, who recently found out he has, at most, a year to live, for some reason. His partner in the race is his daughter Violet (Emma Stone). She doesn't know about his illness, and didn't even know about the race at first, but she does seem to be glad her father is finally doing something instead of just thinking all the time. There are no doubt plenty of other racers, but that's all who have been featured in the story.

There's also a guy called Mr. Bright, who gave the orientation that Tully missed, and shows up at the checkpoints with information or whatever for the contestants. Plus he often talks on the phone to his bosses. And then, just about anyone the racers encounter could turn out to also be involved, so they can't really trust anyone. Oh, and I should also mention that there's a police detective named Erhle, who has been tracking Tully, who he considers a suspect in Tully's wife's disappearance.

And I guess that's all I can say so far. It's a ludicrous premise, yet also intriguing and compelling and fun. I want to learn more about the various characters, and more about the people behind the race, and... everything. Unfortunately, FOX quickly cancelled it, after airing just four episodes, in April 2007. Then they were going to air the last two filmed episodes in July, but instead put them online, on FOX On Demand (where they're now no longer available). Which I watched, and they were cool, and made me eager to see more. Alas, there is no more, so watching the last couple eps just refreshed my annoyance that the story will never be wrapped up....


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