The Bridge Is A Nice Twist On The Buddy Cop Drama Genre

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photo of Demian Bichir and Diane Kruger on FX's The Bridge
Demian Bichir and Diane Kruger on FX’s The Bridge

The Bridge which premiered on the FX channel Wednesday night, isn’t just the usual chase-the-serial killer police drama. If that is all it was, it would be a boring show because it would be cliche. It is more like a gritty buddy cop show that inhabits the underbelly of their world – in this case the border area between El Paso, Tx and Juarez, Mexico. The show has a great cast and writers so it should be a good drama. Or at least not as stupid as the similar “The Following” on FX’s parent FOX.

The Bridge is a present-day crime thriller exploring the tensions on the U.S.-Mexico border. When an American judge known for her anti-immigration views is found dead on the bridge connecting El Paso and Juarez, Sonya Cross (Diane Kruger) from El Paso PD must work with her Mexican counterpart from Chihuahua State Police, Marco Ruiz (Demian Bichir), to catch a serial killer operating on both sides of the border. Marco understands the slippery politics of Mexican law enforcement, and while his police force slowly succumbs to the pressures and demands of the cartel, he’s one of the last good men in the department. He’s charming, but also cunning as he will do whatever it takes to get what he needs. This does not sit well with Sonya, who has Asperger’s and strictly follows rules as well as protocol. Her candid and off-putting personality fuels an unforgiving drive for truth. The case quickly pulls them into a string of murders on the border, a scene already consumed by illegal immigration, drug trafficking, violence and prostitution.

About the show

The show is a adaptation of a Danish series which I’ve never seen – but that doesn’t matter.

The rest of the cast includes Annabeth Gish, Ted Levine, Thomas M. Wright, and Matthew Lillard.

Besides the cast, I was interested in the show because one of the co-creators and writers is Meredith Stiehm (Cold Case and Homeland).

The pilot episode was decent but it wasn’t perfect. I really didn’t get into the show until the last 30 minutes or so when they found the judges car – then it started to click for me.

Diane Kruger’s Sonya Cross was annoying and she was inconsistent with her Asperger’s, however I didn’t focus on Kruger’s tics and I really didn’t care except for knowing she is awkward around people. The scene where she is questioning the reporter as a bomb inside his car ticks down is a great example of the character. Sonya is suppose to be annoying. I will also note that it is kind of strange that someone with Asperger’s would get where Sonya Cross is in the department.

The episode did introduce Annabeth Gish’s character, Charlotte, but you really aren’t sure what part she will play in the overall story. The same goes for Thomas M. Wright’s Steven Linder. All you start out knowing is he loves muttonchops and locking up women in a trailer in the desert.

I was a bit disappointed with Ted Levine’s Lieutenant Hank Wade as he seemed to be a copy of Tommy Lee Jones’ sheriff in the movie “No Country for Old Men” or ranch hand Pete Perkins in “The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada“.

But that is fine. Usually shows either smooth out the rough spots, as the cast gets use to their characters, or they don’t. This show has the potential to improve.

I just hope that it never gets as stupid as the similar serial killer show “The Following” on sister channel FOX.

The Bridge – Trailer (FX) (2013)
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