Ask any criminal to name their favorite CBS crime procedural and dollars to donuts, they’ll say “Blue Bloods.” Why? Representation.
In a Talks With Google interview from 2017, the question was raised: What was the most difficult topic that the show had tried to tackle? Series showrunner Kevin Wade jumped in to point out that, from his perspective, “Blue Bloods” really only works because it’s eager to take on hard situations and to give everyone a fair shake.
“If we do the show, when we do it well,” Wade began, “we have a soapbox, and we have a soapbox of equal height right next to it, and we present both points of view — and hopefully in an entertaining, you know, in a dynamic way.” He continued, clarifying “So I think any time we take on a social issue, if we do it well, it’s really that. That you manage to give the criminal side, or the, the, the poor minority side.”
This is exciting. What do you think he said next?
The great roundtable of ideas that is Blue Bloods
“Because you’ve got cops,” “Blue Bloods” showrunner Kevin Wade continued. “The cops are going, ‘I can’t police your neighborhood if you don’t help me.’ We get into a lot of that. We have, on the show, a Black mayor, who … came up as a community activist. So we have a whole, that whole cabal, and then over here, you have the thin blue line.”
What a roller coaster.
It’s probably only appropriate to present both sides of this argument. On the one hand, there are things about “Blue Bloods” that even the fans can’t stand, like perceived racial stereotypes and a tendency toward self-righteousness. On the other hand, even trying to give anyone other than the police a human perspective is, in the game of inches that is progress, a narrative and moral step up from a lot of crime procedurals.
What’s more, getting bogged down in the minutiae of the demographic politics of the show only serves as a distraction from “Blue Bloods'” real issue: How the hell are the Reagans still getting everyone together for dinner every Sunday? Are none of them watching “The Last Of Us?”