Now that we know Kiefer Sutherland's going to be starring in Tim Kring's new show, Touch, people are starting to wonder what it's about. And the first details are starting to leak out.
Hollywood Insider had the first scoop on the pilot and first few episodes of Touch, and we were able to confirm their info independently.
So in Touch, Sutherland plays Martin Bohm, who was an award-winning journalist at the New York Times, uncovering the big cases of corruption and saving the world. Until Martin lost his job because he mislaid his objectivity on a big story. Now he works as a baggage handler instead of as a journalist.
Martin and his estranged wife had an appointment to see a divorce attorney on Sept. 11, 2001 — and the implication is that his wife died in the terrorist attacks.
Martin's left caring for his autistic son Jake on his own. And Jake never talks, but has an amazing way with numbers — to the point where he's writing down lottery numbers before they are announced. He keeps changing all the clocks in the house to 318 and climbing a cell-phone tower at exactly 3:18 in the afternoon a few days in a row. (This turns out to be a clue to something that helps Martin save a bunch of kids.)
A social worker, the plucky but inexperienced Clea Hopkins, wants to take Jake away from Martin and put him in a residential care facility. But Clea starts to see that there's something unusual about Jake when he writes down Clea's mom's cell phone number a moment before Clea's mom calls her. Clea finally becomes a kind of ally to Martin and Jake, and possibly a third member of their oddball family.
Meanwhile, Martin also seeks some answers from an expert he saw on the Charlie Rose show, Boris Podoltsky — who now looks dissheveled and lives in squalor, because nobody would publish his crackpot theories. Boris guesses right away that Martin is there because his son is climbing cell-phone towers, and he tells Martin that young Jake is a "conduit for energy" who can see the "electromagnetic energy and connections" that make up the world. Jake has already discovered the Fibonacci sequence on his own, without any mathematical schooling. And this means that Jake can see... everything. Says Boris:
Imagine the unspeakable beauty of the universe he sees. No wonder he doesn't talk.
And if Martin can learn to understand what his son sees, "then you'll be at the center of the universe with him."
So it looks like every episode will involve Jake writing down some numbers or pointing out some universal pattern that reveals some terrible impending tragedy that his dad (and maybe Clea) have to avert. It doesn't sound all that promising, to be honest — but Sutherland coudl make it work. You never know.
Top image via Getty Images. [Hollywood Insider]