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Southland – Rating: A+

Submitted by on January 14, 2010 – 8:55 AMNo Comment
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The police drama, Southland (TNT, Tuesdays at 10), was brought back to life thanks to the wondrous creation that is cable television. Thank goodness because the television world is a better place with this program in it.

Southland takes a real, hard hitting look into the lives of the cops of a particular L.A. unit and the victims and criminals that they cross paths with. The pilot episode introduced the main characters including the veteran beat cop John Cooper (Michael Cudlitz) and his rookie partner Ben Sherman (Ben McKenzie). Cooper has a no-nonsense, in your face style that sometimes appears to shake the son of a prominent Beverly Hills attorney.

These guys are joined by Detective Lydia Adams (Regina King) and her partner, Detective Russell Clarke (Tom Everett Scott). Detective Daniel Salinger (Michael McGrady), Nate Moretta (Kevin Alejandro), and Sammy Bryant (Shawn Hatosy) work on gang related crimes, and patrol officer Chickie Brown (Arija Bareikis) rounds out the cast of characters.

Initially the show appeared to be an odd collection of scenes with nothing really intertwining one to the next making the show appear to be somewhat confused about what story it was trying to tell. However, when the whole story gets pulled together at the end the genius of the program and its real purpose comes full circle.

Southland is not just your typical police procedural drama. Instead it takes a different spin on your usual cop show by focusing more on the eclectic group of people that make up the police force and the lives they try to lead while they protect and serve. The show is actually somewhat reminiscent of a popular movie from the late 80s, Colors, which also focused on gang related crime and the harsh reality of life as a cop.

It is surprising that a show that has managed to gather together such a talented group of individuals to go with such a well-crafted story could not find a home on one of the major networks. It just goes to show that the executives have lost sight of airing quality programming for other less expensive programs that may be easier to promote.

The only drawback for the program is that you do have to watch the whole program to see the picture that the director is trying to tell. Those with short attention spans may have trouble staying into the program long enough to enjoy it.

Beer: Drink in the Revolution by, well, drinking Revolution from the Eagle Rock Brewery in Los Angeles, CA. This APA carries a very light, sweet scent to it that matches its fruity, citrus-like hoppy flavor. With just a little bitterness left behind, this beer is refreshing, perfect after a day of busting bad guys like the cops in Southland. At 5.6 % you might just want to have a couple if you’re thinking about driving though.