By Jennifer WulffLaura J. Downey and Michelle Tan
Updated February 05, 2007 12:00 PM

CBS (Thursdays, 9 p.m. ET)



It’s about time they got some new blood on CSI. With Liev Schreiber joining the cast, it won’t be long before you forget all about William Petersen, who’s on leave from the lab and the show. In his cheap black suit, Schreiber’s Michael Keppler doesn’t fit in with the rest of the staff’s low-slung-jeans vibe. But forget fashion. What really alienates him are his shifty methods. The by-the-book gang gets rightfully peeved when he ropes Catherine (Marg Helgenberger) into faking a crime scene to bring a murderer out of hiding. Then there’s his off-putting habit of speaking from the suspect’s point of view. “Our job is to catch killers,” he says. “I guess it helps me to think like one.”

If the still slick and smart CSI is to stay anywhere close to competitor Grey’s Anatomy in the ratings, it needs more friction like this between its characters. Add more sex appeal—a good start would be seeing Keppler and Catherine run with that sexual tension between them—and the show could be back on top.