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'The Chicago Code' 1.07 'Black Hand and the Shotgun Man' Review

3/22/2011 7:22am EDT
The Chicago Code
Who doesn't love busting a major drug dealer? Certainly not Jarek Wysocki, who gets to lead a task force to do just that this week. Because he's Jarek, this takes all of six minutes. (I certainly don't want to see him coming at me with a gun.) This only leads to bigger questions: can they keep him, can they fend off the FBI, and most importantly, can they rescue his kidnapped son? Basically, this episode of The Chicago Code starts where most other crime dramas would end.

I'd call this episode the most familiar of the season, but I mean that as a compliment, because it proves that e...

Top 5 Most Arresting Actors

3/19/2011 11:00am EDT
Casino Royale
When you watch as much TV as I do, you're lucky to see a lot of great actors. But few are the ones who are so great that they make me stop and stare. They're the ones who have my undivided attention when they appear on screen. When they talk, I shut up and listen. They make my jaw drop, my heart break and my head spin. Here's a tribute to five actors who've made me say, "Why didn't I notice you sooner?"

Andre Braugher, Men of a Certain Age

The Emmy winner and Golden Globe nominee was the first actor to ever catch my attention, when I became a fan of Homicide: Life on the Street in 19...

'The Chicago Code' 1.06 'The Gold Coin Kid' Review

3/15/2011 9:39am EDT
The Chicago Code
I said last week that I thought I was getting addicted to The Chicago Code. Having seen this episode, I can say it for sure: I am in love with this show.

As much as it is possible to have a crush on a fictional character, I think I have one when it comes to Jarek, who has time in his morning to give Teresa a perfect rant about the need for better police radios, and without missing a beat, goes out to bust the bad guys with a smile on his face. He's not happy when Teresa pulls him off a drug bust to talk to a philanthropist who'd like to know who sold her son the illegal substances t...

'The Chicago Code' 1.05 'O'Leary's Cow' Review

3/8/2011 9:31am EST
The Chicago Code
I've officially become addicted to The Chicago Code. I say this because, when I saw a promo spot during last night's FOX lineup, I made a noise that can only be described as fangirlish.

And why not? This is my favorite cop show on TV - at the least, it's second only to Justified, which I'm not sure I'd call a cop show in the first place.

This week sees Jarek and Caleb's day off spoiled by the discovery of a dead body inside a firehouse in Chinatown. Apparently Jarek is not in the neighborhood's good graces, so he enlists Teresa's help to smooth things over with the locals while try...

'The Chicago Code' 1.04 'Cabrini Green' Review

3/1/2011 9:28am EST
The Chicago Code
I love the suspense of something about to blow up, and I love the excitement when things actually do blow up. By the end of the teaser for this week's Chicago Code, I was hooked from an entertainment standpoint, but in addition to that, "Cabrini Green" is an involving character piece. Entertaining and thought-provoking - I can't ask for anything more than that.

Jarek and Caleb find themselves chasing down a serial bomber, who manages to blow up a medical lab in the opening minutes. Being that he is smarter than the rest of us, Jarek quickly suspects the Chicago Liberation Army, especia...

'The Chicago Code' 1.03 'Gillis, Chase & Babyface' Review

2/22/2011 7:05am EST
The Chicago Code
The Chicago Code certainly doesn't start soft. This week, we're thrown right into a bank robbery, onto a train and led to the dead body of one of the perpss, all within the first four minutes. This is before we revisit the political demands of Teresa's job and Liam's undercover pressures. Seven minutes in, a guy's getting beaten. I, for one, love this kind of show, the type that forces the audience to hit the ground running and hang on for the ride. We clamor for smarter television every day; well, here it is. Now watch it.

Jarek brings Teresa another bit of information from Liam: a...

Interview: Shawn Ryan Shares Why 'Chicago Code' Is Unique

2/21/2011 4:22pm EST
The Chicago Code
If you haven't heard the name Shawn Ryan before, you're probably living under a rock. He's the driving force behind some of the best television in recent memory, whether it was The Shield or Terriers for FX, The Unit for CBS, or his stint as executive producer for FOX's Lie To Me during what I'd call its best season. Now he's brought us the best new show of the midseason, FOX's The Chicago Code. In advance of tonight's all-new episode, I sat down with Ryan to talk about what makes the series so good and what the chances are that one of my favorite actors might turn up if there's a seas...

'The Chicago Code' 1.02 'Hog Butcher' Review

2/15/2011 10:16am EST
The Chicago Code
When done right, episodes of police dramas about cop shooters or killers are, by their very nature, some of a series' best. I remember being rocked by Homicide: Life on the Street's "Fallen Heroes" two-parter in 1998, and by Cold Case's "Officer Down" just the other day. When I think of those shows, I'm going to think of those episodes. And so it is with "Hog Butcher," the second episode of the so far stellar Chicago Code.

The episode picks up from the pilot's most shocking twists: the death of Teresa's driver and bodyguard, Antonio, who laid down his life to protect hers. Within mi...

'The Chicago Code' 1.01 'Pilot' Review

2/8/2011 9:24am EST
The Chicago Code
The pilot episode of The Chicago Code doesn't simply avoid cliches, but pretty much laughs in the face of them - and that's why I like this series.

In this first installment - which breaks from the tradition of most opening hours being substandard and filled with exposition - we're introduced to a pair of fascinating characters brought to life by magnetic performances. The first is Teresa Colvin (Jennifer Beals, and if you still associate her with Flashdance, you've got another thing coming), who has just months earlier been named the first female Superintendent of Police in Chicago...

Interview: Jennifer Beals Comes Home For 'The Chicago Code'

2/7/2011 4:23pm EST
The Chicago Code
Tonight FOX premieres the highly anticipated new drama series The Chicago Code. In anticipation of the debut, I sat down with series star Jennifer Beals, who plays Teresa Colvin, to talk about what it's like to play the first female Superintendent of Police in her native city, what she saw while preparing for the role, and what sets the Shawn Ryan drama apart from other cop shows.

The role of Teresa Colvin is so delightfully complex that I don't even know where to start with her. What attracted you to this part?

I found it so interesting to play somebody who was walking into unchar...

'The Chicago Code' 1.01 'Pilot' Advance Review

1/31/2011 2:30pm EST
Chicago Code
A funny thing happened to me when I started watching The Chicago Code. I wasn't seeing it the way a lot of people might. You see, I've had a rocky relationship at best with Shawn Ryan's previous shows; I didn't catch on to The Shield until season six, and I'm still trying to forget the disappointing fourth season of The Unit. I mention that because I want to make it clear his pedigree didn't win me over when it came to this series. Nor did the persistent advertising campaign. What turned my head was the final product: a series that is everything the best police dramas should be.


Brittany's TCA 2011 Blog: FOX - 'Chicago Code,' 'American Idol,' 'Terra Nova,' & More

1/12/2011 12:00pm EST
Chicago Code
FOX had its Television Critics Association presentation Tuesday, and from my front-row (literally) seat, I confirmed what I felt has been the case for awhile: while the network has consistently strong dramas, it still needs to find some reliable comedies - at least when it comes to ones that aren't animated.

Here's how the day played out:

The Chicago Code

The highlight of my day was easily the presentation for Shawn Ryan's new drama, The Chicago Code (premiering February 7). Given Ryan's pedigree as the creator of The Shield, The Unit and the recently axed Terriers, the buzz - and the ex...

2011 Midseason TV: Christian Slater Tries Again & A Few 'Friends' Clones

12/29/2010 1:04pm EST
Christian Slater
It’s almost the new year – and you know what that means. No, it’s not time to wonder when Dick Clark is going to retire from his New Year’s Eve show. Midseason is almost upon us – and several new shows are set to premiere shortly, while other favorites are slated to return. Here’s a rundown:

'Breaking In’ – FOX – April 6

This is Christian Slater’s third attempt at a series in as many years. This go round, he’s part of a team of tech experts who are tapped to be consultants on cyber security for large corporations. Here’s hoping third time’s a charm.

'Body Of Proof’ – ABC – premie...