When Jennifer Esposito exited the CBS ratings stalwart “Blue Bloods” in its third season, producers scrambled to find a replacement. Following unsuccessful attempts with other actresses, TV vet Marisa Ramirez stepped into the role of Detective Maria Baez and the badge fit perfectly. Genuine chemistry sparked between series star Donnie Wahlberg, audiences loved her and Ramirez was invited to stay on as a series regular in the fourth season, which premieres on Friday, September 27th.
Ramirez has donned a cop role before. Most recently, in the recurring character of Officer Riley Dunn on ABC’s “Body of Proof” and as series regular “Lina Flores” on Lifetime’s one-seasoner “Against the Wall.” Yet, despite her “criminal chasing” record, Ramirez is a versatile actress who has proven she has the chops to tackle even the most challenging roles. Ramirez’ fearless and emotionally charged performance as Melitta in the Starz mini-series “Spartacus: Gods of the Arena” earned her critical praise and broadened her international fan base.
While Ramirez has delivered solid work in the third season, the writers seemed shy about giving her anything to do that might go beyond a couple of episodes. After all, no one was quite sure how long she would be staying. However, now that Ramirez is on the “Blue Bloods” case for good, it will be interesting to see if the producers give her the material to really shine. If they do, it would no doubt enrich the relationship between Wahlberg’s character Danny Reagan and add another textured layer to this already excellent show.