Rookie Blue

 
Canadian police drama lacks grit of U.S. cop shows.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The rookie cops must rely on their own strengths -- and each other -- to succeed. Hard work matters, but it isn't always enough.

Positive role models

The rookies are committed to their job and eager to prove themselves. The suspects/criminals they deal with are less admirable.

Violence

People are chased, shoved, and knocked down. Guns are visible, shots are fired, and bloody gunshot wounds are visible. Some minor hazing scenes, including forcibly handcuffing rookies and making them find a way to get out.

Sex

Prostitutes are often suspects and/or witnesses. Officers are occasionally shown taking off their outer clothes and/or standing in their underwear in locker rooms. 

Language

Generally mild; potential for words like "hell" and "damn."

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Characters drink beer, tequila shots, martinis, and other liquor at bars. The police also often find themselves dealing with drug dealers and addicts and investigating crimes at crack houses.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this Canadian police drama is milder than most U.S. cop shows, but it still has plenty of content that makes it an iffy choice for younger viewers. Subjects like prostitution, drug dealing, addiction, and murder are consistently discussed, and gunshot victims (often with bloody wounds) are visible. Characters are sometimes shown getting undressed and standing in their underwear, and they often unwind over beer, tequila, martinis, and other drinks.

What's the story?

ROOKIE BLUE follows the lives of police officers beginning their careers with Toronto’s 15th Division. In the first season, the novice cops include Officer Andy McNally (Missy Peregrym), Officer Gail Peck (Charlotte Sullivan), Officer Dov Epstein (Gregory Smith), Traci Nash (Enuka Okuma), and Chris Diaz (Travis Milne), who eventually graduate from "rookie" status and become more experienced partners. Throughout it all, the officers must also find a way to negotiate their personal lives and relationships while dealing with the pressure of being on the force.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

On one hand, this Canadian series -- which airs simultaneously on Canadian and American television -- feels hip and trendy, thanks to the modelesque looks of its attractive, young crew. On the other, it feels a little like a throwback, thanks to plotlines and gee-golly antics that are noticeably tamer than other series tackling the same subject matter.

While Rookie Blue definitely has some worthy moments and delivers well-paced, suspenseful action plots, it also lacks the grittiness that most popular American crime dramas are known for, which could strike some viewers as a little unconvincing. Still, others looking for a milder option to edgier cop shows might find this police drama an entertaining alternative.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about what it's like to be a police officer. What kind of challenges do rookies face when they start out? How long is a person considered a "rookie" officer?

  • How does the media contribute to the way people view police officers in real life? What do you think some of the differences are between the ways in which movies and TV shows depict cops and the work they do, and what the life of a police officer is really like?

  • Do you think reality shows that feature police officers offer a more realistic view of what police officers do on a daily basis? Why or why not? How do cop dramas and cop-centered reality shows compare?

TV details

Cast:Charlotte Sullivan, Gregory Smith, Missy Peregrym
Network:ABC
Genre:Drama
TV rating:TV-14
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of Rookie Blue was written by

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Quality

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written bycommanderundy ha September 6, 2010
age 15+
 
love it
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Great role models
Teen, 15 years old Written bymaddy1995 August 10, 2010
age 14+
 

rookie blue aka best show ever

this is the best show ever! ever Thursday i always look forward to watching it.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Parent Written bydanharvell May 30, 2013
age 14+
 

Series Had Promise, Ultimately Disappoints

When this series started, I was really excited about it. The premise of the show seemed very strong with strong characters to back it. Season two started the slide from a solid police drama to what eventually became the mindless bore-fest that it has become. Predictable to the very end, the plot line seems to have shifted away from the police drama aspect of the show to the old standby plot of which officer is sleeping with the other? After three seasons and two episodes into the fourth, I am done with the show. It went from a solid, well-produced program to mindless, tedious, and ultimately unbelievable. After all, if a real officer screwed up as many times (and as severely) as the lead characters in "Rookie Blue", surely they would have been discharged from their duties, by now.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

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