The Shield - Season 5 (4 Disks)
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Supporting-character arcs are equally fresh and involving: Officer Danny Sofer (Catherine Dent) is eight months pregnant with Mackey's child; Wyms (CCH Pounder) struggles with a disabling case of lupus before assuming Captaincy of "The Barn"; Dutch (Jay Karnes) is reluctantly teamed with the ethically challenged ex-Captain Billings (David Marciano), leading to a perfect blend of comic relief; and while Aceveda (Benito Martinez) is frantically wedged between Mackey and Kavanaugh, beat-cop Julien (Michael Jace) copes with an eager but incompetent rookie (Paula Garces) who benefits from Dutch's self-serving mentorship. And while season 5 dishes up plenty of crime-fighting action, it's Kavanaugh's presence (and Whitaker's offbeat, intimidating performance) that keeps these 11 episodes focused with laser-like intensity. (Kudos also to Cathy Cahlin Ryan for her superb work as Mackey's anguished but cool-headed wife.)
As usual with The Shield, the DVD bonus features are outstanding, emphasizing the series' cast and crew as a close-knit family, deeply affected by the departure of a major cast member and the death (on April 17, 2006, from complications of Lyme Disease and Lou Gehrig's Disease) of veteran director/producer Scott Brazil, whose contributions to The Shield were nothing less than essential. Beloved by all, Brazil is honored with a memorial featurette, and the powerful 88-minute documentary "Delivering the Baby: The Making of Episode 511" intimately chronicles the production of "Postpartum" and its emotional impact on everyone involved. Audio commentaries for all 11 episodes add to the series' rich familial history (these rank among the best TV-related DVD commentaries ever), and the "TV Academy Panel" is a well-moderated Q&A (by Entertainment Weekly reporter Lynnette Rice) with Chiklis, Ryan, and Whitaker. In the "I.A.D." featurette, The Shield's police consultants analyze Whitaker's character and the essential role of the Internal Affairs Division, and a wealth of deleted scenes prove, yet again, that The Shield maintains its excellence even on the cutting-room floor. No doubt about it, season 5 will leave you begging for season 6. --Jeff Shannon
Top Customer Reviews
Detective Vic Mackey's original sin -- to keep it hushed for those not in the know -- comes back to haunt the entire Strike Team in the fifth season, while strings from seasons past (The Incident with Aceveda, Mackey and Danny's tryst, etc., etc.) are all pulled taut to make the entire season tense with ugly possibilities, the ugliest of which comes at the end.
Forest Whitaker is a commanding presence as Internal Affairs Lieutenant John Kavannaugh, a seemingly-dedicated member of the rat squad who SHOULD be perceived as the hero in this piece. But of course, we've all come to love Vic Mackey so much that we're actually rooting for Kavannaugh to fail (again, another impressive accomplishment for a series in which the hero is actually a less-evil villain). Kavannaugh's merciless pursuit of Mackey, along with a too-eager-to-deal-for-the-truth attitude that leads him to bargain with season four übervillain Antwon Mitchell, spells tragedy for a lot of characters.
For someone like me, who is familiar with 'The Shield's entire run, this was an immensely satisfying, if painful, season. It brought in elements from seasons past, with a firm eye toward the (uncertain) future.Read more ›
In real life, Forest Whitaker's Kavanaugh would be My Hero, because I know the Strike Team members deserve what's coming to them, but as a Shield and ST fan I mostly don't want them to get it now. One minute they're behind, the next minute ahead, but Kavanaugh is a pit bull who won't let go so the tug of war goes back and forth the whole season. The storylines for the rest of the cast weren't as meaty this year but still complemented the season and built on their history as well. The shoe was on the other foot for Julian who was training officer for bumbling newcomer Tina, while Billings is an inept acting Captain. Catherine Dent was pregnant so Danny was too, but you'll have to wait until the last show to meet the father. Terry's death haunts both Vic and Aceveda again, while Claudette finally gets her due. Ally Walker was a notable guest star in an episode that had her working with Jay Karnes' character Dutch which was kind of cute because Ally Walker starred as Samantha Waters for 3 seasons on "Profiler" and Dutch tries to be "the great serial killer profiler" as Claudette once put it. (Although Walker's character on The Shield was neither cop nor FBI agent.) Jay Karnes' Dutch did have an interesting twist when he decides to take a cue from a pimp in his approach towards newcomer Tina.Read more ›
One of the aspects I began noticing while watching this season was how the writers are showing us in each consecutive season how captians and people with authority handle Vic, and what it will actually take to get him.
When Aceveda was running the barn, he wanted to bring Vic down because Vic was a bad cop, but also because he wanted to help himself. That also meant he didn't mind helping himself to Vic's methods (used Vic) when it suited him. He couldn't get the job done, because he lacked personal integrity.
Rawlings had the integrity, but she believed in a second chance for all. She would have eventually got Vic, but unfortunately, her integrity got her canned while Vic's second chance clock was winding down.
Billings? Forget about it, he just wants cruise control for himself. Kavanaugh is a bull dog who wont stop, and will use any means necessary, even if it means he has to break certain moral codes. But he is not in charge of Vic directly, so it resorts to a battle of wits in season 5, and it was very exciting. Looks like it will ramp up even more in season 6. But .. can Kavanaugh bring down Vic the wrong way? I don't know. Vic is too smart. Anything Kavanaugh does "wrong", is an opportunity for Vic to use that against him. Kavanaugh almost has to sacrifice his own career to take Vic down ... and is he willing to do that? Is he willing to do MORE than that?
Enter Claudette. We know her. She has fierce integrity, and she is directly in charge of Vic now. I think she is way beyond giving him a second chance. Vic could be in trouble. How will Claudette react the first time she considers using the wrong kind of shortcut and knows Vic is the guy to get it done?Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Watched this on Amazon Prime and loved it! I had a lot of catching up to do having only watched the first couple of seasons. Michael Chiklis as Detective Vic Mackey is amazing. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Raelynn D.
The story and plot and acting were still as good as all previous seasons (except for Ms. Ryan), but Forrest Whitaker overacted from the start. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Whitelightone
The Shield, on many levels, may be the best film or TV treatment of the human condition ever done depending on the intellect of the viewer. Read morePublished 4 months ago by rembrandt