TV Preview: Bratt's 'Cleaner' gets into predictable messes

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It's been more than seven years since the premiere of A&E's last original drama series, "100 Centre St.," and for its relaunch of first-run scripted programming, the network doesn't stray from the theme of its docu-reality show, "Intervention."

Inspired by a true story, "The Cleaner" (10 p.m. Tuesday) is all about the extreme interventions practiced by William Banks (Benjamin Bratt), who kidnaps those who need saving from their vices. Banks has his own history of addiction and promised God he'd help others if he could get a second chance.

His wife, Melissa (Amy Price-Francis), isn't always sure the deal was worth it, saying, "You help a lot of people, but all you did was replace one fix with another."

'The Cleaner'
  • When: 10 p.m. Tuesday, A&E.
  • Starring: Benjamin Bratt.

Banks has a team of helpers, including Akani Cuesta (Grace Park, "Battlestar Galactica"), with whom he had a one-night stand while separated from his wife.

Co-created by Jonathan Prince ("Cane," "American Dreams"), "The Cleaner" is the latest in a string of unremarkable basic cable dramas with a brand-name star playing the tough but damaged lead (see also: "The Closer," "Saving Grace," "Damages"). There's also a bit of the tough-guy TV element so popular today in cable reality shows ("Ice Road Truckers," "Deadliest Catch").

But all these elements don't add up to much more than a predictable franchise drama featuring an intervention of the week with a little bit of character development thrown in for good measure.

TV editor Rob Owen can be reached at or 412-263-1112. Read the Tuned In Journal blog at .


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