In a visual flourish courtesy of pilot director Bryan Singer, Special Agent Milton Chamberlain is introduced in the world of "Battle Creek" from a low angle. Above his head, a circle of lights forms a halo.
Milt Chamberlain is an angel. Milt Chamberlain is a boy scout. Milt Chamberlain is a golden boy.
But Milt Chamberlain isn't exactly what he seems to be. Or at least Battle Creek PD Detective Russ Agnew (Dean Winters) is convinced that Chamberlain isn't what he seems to be. But every time Russ thinks he's uncover the dark secret that his new partner is hiding, we discover that the secret isn't really the truth.
It's a reluctant partnership that forms the spine of "Battle Creek," a quirky, surprisingly funny procedural that was created by "Breaking Bad" maestro Vince Gilligan and then developed as a series by "House" maestro David Shore.
Our first impression of Chamberlain, all flash and polish, is a good match for most viewers' preconceptions of star Josh Duhamel, who moved from modeling to soap opera to the glitz and gloss of NBC's "Las Vegas," before moving on to a number of films including the "Transformers" franchise. But part of the fun of "Battle Creek" is watching Duhamel take a character who begins as a Ken doll and start to play around with his rough edges, culminating in a number of interesting reveals, each of which could be true or else another fiction.
I sat down with Duhamel last week to talk about his first regular TV role since 2008, the attraction of playing a character built on a foundation of lies and perhaps redemption and whether or not he feels like he truly gets Milt Chamberlain after 13 episodes.
"Battle Creek" premieres this Sunday (March 1) at 10 p.m. on CBS.
Check out my full chat with Josh Duhamel below...