Last Friday was the premiere of CBS' new cop drama Blue Bloods, which follows a family of New York City cops starring Tom Selleck and his moustache. Though not entirely inventive, it is pretty effective, for half the episode.
Blue Bloods is a "ripped from the headlines" Law and Order episode meets the Godfather in reverse meets Brothers and Sisters.
The Set Up
Tom Selleck, as previously noted, is the leader of a family of cops. He's the Commissioner of the NYPD, his ailing father was also the Commissioner and it's hinted at a couple of times that he was forced to retire because of a public relations mishap. All of Tom's children are also involved in criminal justice: his older son, played by Donnie Wahlberg, is a detective and his younger son graduates from the academy in the Pilot's opening sequence, and his daughter is an Assistant District Attorney. There was also a middle brother who was killed in the line of duty whose death hangs over everything. This leads to some weighty discussions during family dinners, since these guys don't adhere to the "you don't talk business at the table" rule from the Godfather:
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Cringe Factor (Out of 10):
Most of the show is pretty well done. It's not flashy or anything, but there's some interesting case work and the family dynamic is mostly believable. It is a little curious that there is so little focus on the younger son, played by Will Estes, as we see only one scene from his first day on the street. Perhaps they were worried that his plotline would echo Southland too much and they're right to be worried.
But, the pilot begins to fall apart close to the end when they bring in a conspiracy element that is completely unnecessary and totally laughable. Estes is approached by a couple of Internal Affairs officers and is recruited to be a mole for them, sussing out something called the Blue Templar which his dead brother was investigating at the time of his death.
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Not so shockingly, during the pilot's opening, we get treated to a nice long closeup of the same badge in Donnie's safe:
Over/Under for Cancellation
You never think that a show premiering on a Friday night has a bright future, so you kind of go in to a show like this figuring that CBS has ghettoized it to Friday because it's terrible and there is an expectation of failure. That's probably the case, even though CBS does a good job of keeping procedurals on the air.