TV is ready for a primetime series that is a potent blend of action and comedy, and Whiskey Cavalier has captured the right recipe for success. Former Scandal star Scott Foley and The Walking Dead’s Lauren Cohan team up in the ABC spy dramedy, which presented a sneak peek after Sunday’s Oscars telecast before premiering in its normal time slot on Wednesdays.
Foley plays overemotional FBI agent Will Chase, code name “Whiskey Cavalier,” who crosses paths with badass CIA operative Francesca “Frankie” Trowbridge, whose CIA operative name, “Fiery Tribune,” is an apt description of her take-no-prisoners spunk. After trying (and failing) to best each other at the spy game, Will and Frankie are assigned to work together and lead a ragtag team as they try to save the world. Their team includes former Ugly Betty and Devious Maids standout Ana Ortiz; Tyler James Williams, who shared the screen with Cohan in a 10-episode arc during TWD’s fifth season as Noah; and Indian comedian Vir Das.
Enjoy this shot of Whiskey Cavalier
The globe-trotting series traverses Europe, and Cohan — who is both American and British — relishes a recent episode shot on familiar turf. “I got to go home to London for the second episode,” she reveals. “And we were riding this crazy, handmade Dutch speedboat down the River Thames with three cranes over us. It was unreal.”
From her years on TWD, Cohan is as accomplished in stage combat as they come, but to play a top-notch CIA operative, she’s upped her fighting repertoire to include lethal accuracy while rocking stiletto heels.
Frankie actually uses makeup and wardrobe as a defense mechanism,” Cohan explains. “She’s a spy, so she uses the extent of her powers as a woman and as a badass and whatever needs to happen to get the mission accomplished.” Plus, as her character shares in the series premiere, the CIA has all of the best crime-fighting toys, and you may never look at feminine hygiene products the same way again.
Foley is giggle-inducingly charming as a man fresh from an unexpected breakup who alternates between performing tearful renditions of torch ballads and racing headlong into danger while pontificating the meaning of life and love. The character is delightfully damaged and exudes a pathos that is easy to cheer for. Foley shares that the stunt-heavy series often leaves him exhausted and bruised, particularly after a recent day spent shooting intense scenes in freezing Prague weather. “Driving stunts make me really excited because I get to sit in a car.” And, Foley’s use of puppy-dog eyes is masterful.
Cohan calls the series “a light, one-hour, fun show that also still has a lot of sentiment and a lot of heart.” She shares, “I’ve wanted to do comedy for so long, and this was sort of the perfect segue because I love action.” Foley agrees and adds, “I wasn’t interested in just doing an action show or a drama. I wanted to do a show that reminded me of the shows that I grew up watching — Remington Steele, Moonlighting, Hart to Hart, Simon & Simon.” And like Foley’s favorite predecessors, Whiskey Cavalier features onscreen chemistry with a high potential for combustibility that will be delicious to watch. It offers a refreshing blend of explosive laughter and actual explosions, is a blithe jaunt through a dangerous world, and is a nice complement to ABC’s strong Wednesday comedies, including The Goldbergs and Modern Family.
Whiskey Cavalier > ABC > Wednesdays at 10/9c beginning Feb. 27