Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Shield - Season 6

Another season, another boatload of problems for Vick Mackey to sort through. At this point it's getting pretty difficult to talk about it without getting into spoiler territory, but suffice it to say that the walls are closing in. The individual shock value cases from week to week are becoming part of the background more and more, as the other cops are reduced to minor soap opera antics as they continue to be marginalized. He needs to find out what happened to his friend, content with a replacement as he's getting pushed out of a job, and worry about retaliation for past wrongdoings. It's amazing that they consistently manage to keep the crap piled so high without it ever falling over; Mackey's always one wrong move away from getting caught or killed or worse, but he always finds a way out with his brain or good luck without it seeming like deus ex machina or something. Just impeccably crafted crime drama there.

There are issues with the rest of the cast though. Adding Julian to the strike team and promoting Claudette were good moves, giving them things to do that keep them around in the plot without reaching too hard. They also managed to keep the wife involved in more interesting ways than the whole nurse thing. But Dutch's rivalry with Billings just seems like small potatoes compared to any of the life-or-death stakes Mackey's involved with, and the continuing subplot with the problematic rookie was just irritating most of the time, though they finish the season there on a decent note. Danny's stuff isn't terrible either, and I have to commend them for finally making Aceveda useful again by the end of the season. There are only 13 episodes left, and based on how this last one ended, I can only imagine how messed up it's going to get.

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