Tuned In

The Morning After: Petty Larceny

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In addition to a suspect can of energy drink, TNT sent several episodes of its new heist show, Leverage, starring Timothy Hutton. I will confess that I did not get through all of them: once it was clear that it was basically Hu$tle with a moral streak (right down to the by-now-standard Get Shorty style soundtrack), I didn’t see the point. Not that it’s bad, exactly; somebody who likes heist/con stories better than I do to begin with may not mind the, er, pilfered setting.

But as much as the angle of sticking it to corporate villains is supposedly zeitgeisty, I’m not sure it actually makes the premise more enjoyable. I feel like I’m being told I can’t enjoy a con story unless I’m convinced it’s really, really bad people who are getting taken. (As opposed to, say, people who are simply unsavory, greedy, dumb and rich.) Isn’t part of the fun of a good heist story giving yourself over to the amoral worldview? As long as it’s not orphans getting bilked, do we really need the moral deck stacked against the marks to enjoy it?