To be honest, I never thought that The Shield could live up to the expectations set by the premier episode. I was so incredibly wrong. The first year of The Shield completely blew my doors off. Non stop action, great plotting, dialogue and the acting was top notch. Other than the birth of my sons, those thirteen hours were the best I spent that year. It had to go downhill though, right? The second season would be the one where Ryan and company would resort to the tired conventions of police drama and my new favorite show would lose it's edge. Happily- Wrong again.
Season two developed the characters of Mackey and his crew to new levels. If you haven't seen the show I won't ruin anything for you, but everyone is put through the wringer in these thirteen episodes. We get political intrigue, interoffice machinations, great police drama with healthy doses of sex and violence. Unfortunately that's what most people focus on.
Chicklis deserved the Emmy for the quiet moments as well as the brutal ones. This actor has got a slow burn like no other. There are moments where he says nothing but we can tell all the alternatives he is running through his head by simply looking at his eyes and physicality. This season brings Mackey to a crossroads where he has to make some serious decisions about where his life is headed and we feel every emotion he is going through thanks to this beautiful, bald man.
That having been said, this is not a series for the faint of heart. There are scenes of physical torture, violence against women, hostage situations and raw sex. You are forewarned.
If your stomach can take a brutal, skillfully written, brilliantly acted police drama there is no better way to take up space in your DVD player than The Shield.