Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Produced by the same team responsible for C.S.I.: Crime Scene Investigation, the CBS series Without a Trace focused on the activities of the FBI's Missing Persons Squad. Each episode revealed the methodical, minute-by-minute, clue-by-clue procedure used by the Squad in their efforts to locate people who seemed to have vanished from the face of the earth. Of special interest was the squad's weekly reconstruction of the D.O.D., or Day of Disappearance. Like C.S.I., the series was highly but not obtrusively stylized, using fast-cutting, dreamlike flashbacks and superimposed images. Anthony LaPaglia headed the cast as the Squad's businesslike, super-efficient leader Jack Malone. Created by Hank Steinberg of 61* fame, Without a Trace debuted September 26, 2002, in the prime Thursday-night time slot opposite NBC's long-running ER.