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Series debut: The Bridge

In television on 03/05/2010 at 8:56 pm

Series name
The Bridge

Debuts
Friday, March 5, 2010 9-11 p.m. ET

Regularly airs
Fridays at 10 p.m. ET and, eventually, on CBS

Premise
Frank Leo is a second generation cop who becomes a police union boss to clean house at the precinct, from the top down. Not much for subtlety or sweet talking, this means a lot of shouting and resorting to what some would call questionable means for achieving his end of a good, moral police division.

Primary cast and crew
Aaron Douglas (Battlestar Galactica) is Frank Leo, the cop and union president at the centre of an amazing amount of action.
Frank Cassini (Intelligence, Da Vinci’s City Hall)  Staff Sgt. Bernie Kantor
Michael Murphy (Away from Her, The Trotsky) is Police Chief Ed Wycoff
Ona Grauer (SGU: Stargate Universe) is Frank’s lawyer/moll Abby St. James
Alan Di Fiore (Da Vinci’s Inquest, The Life, The Handler) is the series writer a writer/exec producer.
Laszlo Barna (Da Vinci’s Inquest) is exec producer.

But what do I know anyway? After having seen the two-hour pilot …
After having seen several version of the trailer, which is embedded at the top of this post, I was on the verge of not even bothering to watch this pilot. “WE OWN THIS CITY!” Yes, Frank Leo, I get that you’re mad as hell and you’re not going to take this corrupt police leadership any more. But I did watch it and was pleasantly surprised by how gripped I was by the end of the two-hour debut. It does have more ham-fisted moments, as when Frank’s partner is yammering on about their home turn, “this division, the Bridge division,” named for the bridge that joins the upscale neighbourhood and the crack slum.  That, my friends, is some clumsily delivered exposition. There are other groaners and frenzies of crazy-eyed overacting, but in the end, I kinda like this Frank Leo guy, although his day is really never done. By the end of the two hours: He’s saved an old cop’s reputation, he’s infuriated and then appeased and then re-infuriated the brass, he’s got a new girl, he’s suffered a couple of horrible losses, and he’s gotten even on several fronts, some of which required some very clever footwork. And, without spoiling it, he also knows how to use a digital audio recorder. You’ve been warned. Douglas, as he was on Battlestar Galactica, is a bit stiff, but has his moments. I’ll watch at least a couple more times.

Official website
Basic but good site, with links to Facebook page, a set visit, an interview with the real-life cop whose stories inspired the series, and cast and episode info, along with a link to watch episodes online after they air.

— Denise Duguay

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