Who hasn't missed Sarah Michelle Gellar vanquishing all manner of Hellmouth demon in Buffy the Vampire Slayer? Is there someone who didn't love her turn as sexed up manipulator Kathryn Merteuil in Cruel Intentions? Point is we've had the premiere of Ringer, aka the return of SMG to weekly TV, marked on our calendars since it got the green light back in May.
But there are other reasons outside of Gellar to check out her new soapy thriller, too, starting with the premise: She plays estranged twins! Bridget is a recovering addict on the run from some unsavory types, and when super-rich sis Siobhan goes missing, she takes on the presumed-dead's identity as a last resort. Of course, we also just said she's playing twins... Hooked yet?
Here are five other reasons you could give Ringer a shot — besides Her Sarah Michelleness — with a little input from the cast:
1. The show's writers are obsessed with Breaking Bad. They like good things! And according to Ioan Gruffudd, who plays Siobhan's distant husband Andrew, they're aiming for the same level or surprise and intensity on Ringer... only without the cursing and throat-slitting drug lords. "One of my favorite shows is Breaking Bad. The writers are obsessed with it. Every Sunday night you get that watercooler moment we'll all talk about on Monday," Gruffudd says. "'Oh my God, did you see the show last night? I can't believe that happened!' So, I'm hoping that our show will have that same kind of cliff-hanger week in and week out."
2. It's raining men! And they all want Sarah. This isn't so much about Gellar as it is the parade of good-looking guys — including Gruffudd, Lost's lusciously lashed Nestor Carbonell and Life Unexpected's Kristoffer Polaha — around her. Just ask them! "Think about all the hot guys — there's not enough Sarah Michelle to go around, so how in the world are you possibly going to keep all these men at bay?" says The Good Wife's Mike Colter, who plays Bridget's Narcotics Anonymous sponsor with whom she shares something more. The answer? They won't be kept at bay. "There's a lot of sexual tension. At some point, it's going to explode," he says. Did he just tease a group number?
3. For those still ticked off at Lost, Ringer promises answers. Let's not go nuts needing answers: Ringer is a mystery as much as it is a starring vehicle for Gellar, so expect to be alternately teased and shocked and... yes, kept in the dark for periods of time. However, in this post-Lost era, the cast and crew swear up and down that resolutions and revelations have been plotted and will arrive in due time. Carbonell, who plays an FBI agent trailing Bridget, puts it this way: "The pilot lays out a lot of information and the writers have done a wonderful job of slowing everything down [after that] and really focusing on particular areas...and revealing things in a really great way. Things get paid off while they're raising other mysteries."
4. Mystery? Yes! Self-serious? No! This isn't Heroes. Or The Event. Or FlashForward. Ringer knows its place, and much like Buffy -- we can't help bring up the comparison — the show's tone walks that same line between melodrama and real emotional moments, between kicka-- action and a little cheese. Dress it up in neo-noir trappings, and hot dog, you've got a serial thriller that's pretty unique among prime time's uber-intense cops and criminals and forensics experts and medical examiners...
5. It's not for teens. In fact, it's a tad out of place on The CW, whose big stars are 150-year-old vampires in brooding teen bodies and affluent just-out-of-high schoolers leading extraordinarily escapist fantasies. Bridget's a former drug addict and stripper who happens to be on the run because she's witnessed a crime. Siobhan, meanwhile, is leading a double life all her own between her husband, guy on the side and, oh, some other guys with a bounty on her head. Don't be fooled by what you've heard about ABC Family's The Lying Game either — they both revolve around rich girl-poor girl twins, one of whom has deep dark secrets, but the similarities end there.
Ringer premieres Tuesday, Sept. 13 at 9/8c on The CW. Are you interested? Why or why not? Tell us in the comments below.