Stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, Monica Barbaro, Milan Carter, Gabriel Luna, Fortune Feimster, Travis Van Winkle, Fabiana Udenio, Jay Baruchel, Barbara Eve Harris, Aparna Brielle, Andy Buckley.
Arnold Schwarzenegger’s first scripted series finds him in his comfort zone, in an action comedy playing a CIA agent on the verge of retirement who is lured back into the field for one last mission.
Schwarzenegger plays Luke Brunner, who is looking forward to a peaceful retirement with his family after years of lying to them about what he does for a living. They think he works at a fitness supply company, which is actually a cover for his role as a secret agent for the CIA. However, the deception has taken its toll on his personal life, having resulted in a divorce years earlier. But he still loves his ex-wife and hopes to reconcile with her once he retires.
Before he can step down, he is tasked with one final assignment for which he is uniquely qualified — to extract a compromised undercover operative from the organization of an international arms dealer named Boro (Gabriel Luna) who Luke once knew as a child. Years earlier, Luke had infiltrated the criminal empire of Boro’s father in order to kill him, and tried to provide for the boy before he eventually broke bad. The plan is for Luke to resume his cover identity to gain access to Boro’s compound to rescue the endangered agent and find out what Boro is up to.
To Luke’s surprise, the agent turns out to be his daughter, Emma (Monica Barbaro of Top Gun: Maverick), who is equally surprised to learn her father also is a spy. They then have to work together to stop Boro from creating a miniaturized nuclear weapon to sell on the black market to terrorists, forming the central arc of the first season’s eight episodes.
The premise is essentially the sequel we never got to Schwarzenegger’s True Lies (the original 1994 movie, not CBS’s awful reboot series that just got canceled), with a few tweaks by creator Nick Santora (“Scorpion”) to make it its own thing.
One of the primary plot threads of True Lies was the subterfuge between an agent and his loved ones, which is also one of the main story elements of “FUBAR.” Emma at first resents her father for lying to her for years and causing so much anguish for her mother, but soon comes to realize she and her father are all too alike. Luke, on the other hand, must come to terms with the fact his daughter has taken up his profession, and cautions her against making the same mistakes he made, particularly when it comes to the boyfriend (Jay Baruchel) she has to constantly lie to about being out of town on business.
“FUBAR” also offers a lot of laughs in between the action, as the series also serves as a tongue-in-cheek homage to Schwarzenegger’s entire career with plenty of references for fans to enjoy.
By its very existence, however, the show also serves as a reminder that a proper American True Lies Blu-ray release is long overdue, let alone a 4K release. While it pops up on a streaming service or cable occasionally, the only domestic disc release True Lies has ever received is the old DVD first released in 1999, and it isn’t available for digital purchase either — an oversight that this show provides the perfect excuse to rectify.