The Chicago Code Review: An Insult to the Audience
I really wish The Chicago Code would stop treating its viewers like morons.
Before I could even process the possibilities of that fascinating exchange between Gibbons and Liam - might the former have actually organized the entire arson/murder as some kind of test for the latter? - the show gave us a superfluous, insulting scene that spelled out exactly what just happened.
What was the point of the meeting between Liam and Colvin? Did we really need him to explain how Gibbons is aware of the fire and the dead body?
Too often, The Chicago Code ignores the lesson we all learned in elementary school: show, don't tell. As took place again on "Black Hand and the Shotgun Man," it force feeds us background information via voiceover and doesn't trust viewers to arrive at their own conclusions.
I audibly groaned when Jarek's ex detailed the life of a cop's wife near the conclusion of the hour. Was this really the best way for the series to explain what went wrong in the marriage? One line from Jarek about how she no longer has to worry about whether or not he'll come home every night would have been sufficient.
Every single time these narrations come up, I legitimately think the show has only filmed 40 minutes worth of scenes and is desperate to kill time. Not exactly the reaction I assume Shawn Ryan and company are looking for.
On a positive note, who doesn't love some Adam Arkin? It was surprising to see such a big star in such a small role, but he made the most of his screen time as the lead FBI agent. And are we meant to believe he was hitting on Teresa with that wedding ring question? Might we see his character again? Let's hope so.
Overall, I never love when a show depicts a case of the week that so clearly mirrors what a main character is going through - hey, look at that drug dealer with his family life/priorities figured out... why can't I be that way?!? - because it's just lazy writing. But I did welcome more of a look into Wysocki's life away from the streets.
For all of the faults I complain about each week, The Chicago Code does have strong actors in strong roles and it would benefit from focusing on their personal struggles as much as their investigations. It would also be nice to see Wysocki on a case that pertains to Gibbons at some point in the near future. That is what the show is supposedly about, right?