×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

TV Review: ‘Chicago PD’

Dick Wolf's latest NBC franchise sets Miranda rights back about 50 years

With:

Jason Beghe, Jon Seda, Sophia Bush, Jesse Lee Soffer, Patrick Flueger, Marina Squerciati, LaRoyce Hawkins, Archie Kao, Elias Koteas

Dick Wolf is no stranger to taking a success — even a moderate one — and spinning it off into franchises. So “Chicago Fire,” his NBC drama, begets “Chicago PD,” a series distinguished primarily by its solid casting and Jason Beghe’s performance as a cop who loves his city almost as much as he relishes beating information out of suspects. If some of NBC’s procedural development has felt like CBS Lite, file this one under CBS Dark — which could end up doing for the Windy City, for good or ill, what “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” did for New York.

Snarling like Batman minus the cowl at bad guys (“Stay out of my city,” he tells one whimpering low-life), Beghe’s Det. Hank Voight made his debut in “Fire” as a ruthless cop, and eventually won redemption — or at least a second chance — as the head of an intelligence unit within the Chicago Police Dept.

Even with supposed carte blanche to run his unit, Voight still operates under the watchful eye of his captain (“The Wire’s” Robert Wisdom), and wrestles with the usual politics of such situations. That can make his take-no-prisoners attitude a problem, and he tries to run interference for his subordinates, who wind up in a whole lot of harrowing situations, including an opening two-parter that puts a family member in jeopardy.

That “Chicago PD” braves a slightly serialized element shouldn’t obscure its fairly simple roots, which is to say that the criminals are so bad they require a response that doesn’t just bend the rules of policing, but rather obliterates them.

At the same time, writer Matt Olmstead seeks to humanize Voight through the fact that he truly cares about his team (“OK, everybody, vest up”) and goes the extra mile to help a young kid caught up in a nefarious crowd (a subplot also spread over multiple hours). It’s only when those kids grow up, apparently, that he likes beating information out of them, or feels justified throwing one of his gang a knife as he questions a suspect, barking to his colleague, “Do what you gotta do!”

The well-traveled Beghe nevertheless convincingly sells the gravelly voiced tough-guy routine, and “Chicago PD” plays to the cathartic aspects of crime-fighting, provided one tries not to think too much about terms like “enhanced interrogation techniques.” And the show is aided by having the likes of Jon Seda, Elias Koteas and Sophia Bush on the case, even if most of the plotting has a musty and manipulative aroma.

As for NBC, the series is assigned a mission almost as simple as Voight’s “Clean up the city” mandate: Improve the 10 p.m. timeslot where “Ironside” ran into a ditch, or die trying.

Like Voight’s task force, it’s a dirty job, but somebody’s gotta do it.

TV Review: 'Chicago PD'

(Series; NBC, Wed. Jan. 8, 10 p.m.)

Production:

Filmed in Chicago by Wolf Films and Universal Television.

Crew:

Executive producers, Dick Wolf, Matt Olmstead, Michael Brandt, Derek Haas, Danielle Gelber, Peter Jankowski, Mark Tinker; co-executive producers, Arthur Forney, David Hoselton; supervising producer, Jason Wilborn; producers, Maisha Closson, Michele Greco; director, Mike Slovis; writer, Olmstead; camera, Rohn Schmidt; production designer, Gregory Van Horn; casting, Jonathan Strauss, Claire Simon. 60 MIN.

Cast:

Jason Beghe, Jon Seda, Sophia Bush, Jesse Lee Soffer, Patrick Flueger, Marina Squerciati, LaRoyce Hawkins, Archie Kao, Elias Koteas

More TV

  • Cocain Grandmother Catherine Zeta Jones

    A+E Networks Sets Program Sales in Latin America and U.S.

    A+E Networks has clinched a raft of new programming sales to top TV outlets in Latin America and NBC’s Universo Spanish-language cabler in the U.S. On the eve of the annual NATPE programming market in Miami this week, A+E said it has set new licensing agreements for scripted and factual content with Direct TV (Latin [...]

  • Outlander 412

    'Outlander' Recap: Brianna Confronts Her Rapist in 'Providence'

    SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “Providence,” the 12th episode of “Outlander” Season 4. There were two competing narratives on “Outlander” this week — one that was largely invented for the show but was a very clever way to keep a certain character involved, and another that was also changed [...]

  • Gillian AndersonX-Files press conference, Century City,

    Gillian Anderson to Play Margaret Thatcher in Season 4 of 'The Crown' (Report)

    “The Crown” has found its Iron Lady. Gillian Anderson is said to have signed on to play British prime minister Margaret Thatcher in the fourth season of the much-praised Netflix drama series. Anderson’s casting was first reported by the Sunday Times. A Netflix rep declined to comment on the report. Anderson is the latest notable [...]

  • FICG Names Estrella Araiza As New

    Estrella Araiza To Head Up Guadalajara Intl Film Festival

    The Guadalajara Intl. Film Festival (FICG) has announced that Estrella Araiza, until now the festival’s head of industry and markets and director of the Guadalajara IntL. Film Festival in Los Angeles, has been promoted to the position of general director of the prominent Mexican festival. She replaces Ivan Trujillo, appointed director of TV UNAM. Araiza [...]

  • AGS2 Key Art, Image IDs: AGS2_081218_2727,

    Starz Releases 'American Gods' Season 2 Trailer (Watch)

    Starz has released a second season trailer for “American Gods,” which returns to the cabler Mar. 10, depicting the brewing war between Gods old and new in the series based on Neil Gaiman’s novel of the same name. “When people first came to America they brought us with them,” the trailer begins, flashing images of [...]

  • R. Kelly

    R. Kelly Accusers Detail Abuse, Reveal Evidence on 'Dateline'

    The continuing controversy surrounding R. Kelly, including allegations of sexual abuse by a number of women over three decades, was the focus of Friday’s episode of “Dateline.” Speaking to accusers Sparkle, Jerhonda Pace and parents Tim and Jonjelyn Savage, among others, NBC’s Andrea Canning heard more harrowing tales of abduction and sexual misconduct on the part [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content