TV TUESDAYS: ROOKIE BLUE
The Rookie Blue week continues.
I watch a lot of TV and I mean A L O T. There are worlds I get lost in, worlds that I visit, and some I abandon. But there are few that consume my soul, that I repeatedly watch and never want to leave. Rookie Blue (2010-2015) is one of those shows. It follows five new rookies as they embark on their destination to becoming coppers of the 15th division in Toronto.
However, I do have a confession. My love wasn't instant but rather gradual. And I can tell you the exact moment where I knew this show was something special and the moment that solidified my love forever.
The moment my heart grew three sizes: 1x12 In Blue.
The Rookies are finally cut loose from their training officers while Andy began questioning why she chose the profession. The moment they find out they're officially coppers, the joy that radiates is infectious. Especially when Best has Andy cut her own tie as Sam watches on proudly. I knew I was ready for more.
The moment I knew this was an all-consuming show and ship: 2x01 Butterflies.
Andy gets put in charge at a local concert and minutes after Sam calls her boss, shots ring out. Andy is hit twice in the vest and I'm pretty sure Sam's world stops. At the beginning of the episode, Sam gets the opportunity he told Andy he was waiting for in the series second episode, an opening in Guns and Gangs. Yet, when asked why he hadn't said yes, a simple you, slipped out. While to the average person, he may sound sarcastic, there was truth. He can't imagine his life without her. In that moment, he almost had to.
While the focus is on the Rookie's and their journey of growth and mistakes, you can't help but be invested in the superior officers. Jerry Barber, Frank Best, Oliver Shaw, Noelle Williams, bring out the best, and sometimes the worst, in the rookies. The show is filled with so much heart, family, and love. And just like family, there are many ups and downs. Tons of angst, tears, laughs, and affection. At the end of the day, it’s apparent, blood doesn't make us family. Family is who we choose. Those we know we can depend on, especially during our darkest days. The friendships and relationships that we see blossom are poetic. They're real. And they hurt, in the best way possible.
Let's examine them a little further.
The Rookies that we meet immediately are Andy McNally, Traci Nash, Gail Peck, Dov Epstein, and Chris Diaz. Each unique and lovable in their own way. It's very easy to get invested in this group over the course of the series. As we watch them make mistakes, we continue to root for them to be better, to become coppers, and better humans. Admittedly, in the beginning, it takes a second to fall in love with these characters, but that's what makes it interesting.
Gail Peck who comes off cold and calculating ends up becoming lovable because of her sarcasm and blunt attitude. Dov Epstein and Chris Diaz are your typical males who are, at times, a little dumb but you learn that they mean well. Dov's chase to constantly have a woman fall in love with him as Chris falls in love with the icy Gail Peck. The dynamic between the five of them is real and honest. The bond that they formed going through the academy together and then navigating life is something we get to enjoy over the six seasons. Through tragedy, heartache, and of course, the lighter moments, when it comes down to it, these rookies will stick together.
Traci Nash and Andy McNally
Andy McNally is the epitome of control. During her life, she had many people that she was supposed to trust that failed her in some way. She made plans because she had to, because it grounded her. That's how she was able to cope, to move forward. When Andy met Traci, I truly believe it was the first time where she had someone, a best friend, she could depend on. Someone she could be her true self with. When Andy's fiancé, Luke, cheats on her, and they split, she puts on this brave face with everyone. There are only two people who know that there is truly something wrong with Andy, Traci and Sam. Traci lets her be, she knows she'll come to her if she needs her. At the end of the episode, the weight of the day crumbles her and she lets out an "I'm tired" and "Luke slept with Jo." Instead of a lecture, an I told you so, or anything, Traci simply sends back an "I know." She grabs Andy's hand and solidifies that she has her, no matter what. The moment Traci loses Jerry forever, Andy is by her side. Although Andy later leaves (which we still hold a grudge about) their friendship doesn't waiver at the end of the series. These two mean the world to me.
[PS we love one auntie who hangs her nephew's artwork in her locker.]
Sam Swarek, Oliver Shaw, and Jerry Barber
We were robbed of copious amounts of poker nights. And determining who was really the best, Jerry or Sam. Who won the most money? These three brothers (in arms and life) were never given enough time together. The dynamic of goofiness and seriousness of these three stooges are some of the best on the show. Although moments were few and far between, each scene was purer than the next. Sam deserved to have Jerry standing next to Oliver at his wedding and Jerry deserved to get his happily ever after. Those are the true injustices of the series.
Noelle Williams and Traci Nash
Noelle Williams was Traci's training officer. And although stern, in the beginning, Noelle quickly softens to Traci. They even begin to bond over Noelle's possibility of motherhood. Traci assists with her IVF treatments and becomes a shoulder to lean on. This friendship is so wholesome that when Traci is up for a detective rotation, no one cheers her on more than Noelle. Other than Jerry, Noelle not being in Traci's everyday life is a shame. The big sister she never had but would always need by her side. The comfort she needs in the darkest moments.
Andy McNally and Sam Swarek
Officer Sam Swarek and Officer Andy McNally are my pride and joy. I could probably write a dissertation on how much I love these two. They're partners, for life. In everything they do. Sam met his match the day Andy tackled his greasy head in the alleyway. They challenge each other but love deeply. Like Sam says, they tried running, they tried being with other people but it didn't matter because at the end of the day, they're meant to be. No matter what life throws at them, they'll continue to become stronger. As long as they have each other, they can get through anything.
Jerry Barber and Traci Nash
Detective Jerry Barber and Office Traci Nash (+Leo) were unjustly robbed of their happily ever after. Coming off a divorce, Jerry believed he could strictly be friends with benefits with Traci, to not scare her away, she's the one who has to cut the strings (we won't even talk about that knife right now because we emotionally can't). He even stands by as she gets back with her ex because she thinks it's best for their son. But Jerry was her person and there wasn't anyone who could keep these two apart. Even when her baby daddy punched her boyfriend in the mouth. Two seasons later, we see Jerry selling his dream car for his dream girl. These two deserved the world and I will never forgive the showrunners.
Frank Best and Noelle Williams
Staff Sargent Frank Best and Officer Noelle Williams are essentially the Mom and Dad of the 15th division. Each of them taking care of their friends and Rookies in a way that makes them superior. When these two find out they're about to become parents, officially, for the first time, you can't help but feel pure joy along with them. If anyone deserved love it was Noelle Williams and she was the best thing to happen to Frank Best.
Watch Rookie Blue on Roku App for FREE or purchase on Prime Video. You won't regret it.