Shades of Blue: Unforgiven – Game Changer (Review)

 Shades of Blue - Season 2

Season two of Shades of Blue starts off with a refresher on the events at the tail end of last season. Miguel, with that dramatic neck break courtesy of his ex, is now out of the picture and buried in the cemetery. Woz has settled into the role of Stahl’s dirty cop and Harlee is definitely unforgiven by her former boss and friend.

With Wozniak on the FBI agent’s side, he makes Harlee understand that there will be no forgiveness from his side ever. Woz explains that there will never be any level of trust between them again. Meanwhile he begins doing Stahl’s bidding in order to find out who the target really is.

Harlee burns the money she paid Miguel and tries to play both sides against the middle when learning that Stahl has no intention of letting her go. The FBI agent with the unhealthy fixation on Detective Santos goes after Gina the escort when he learns, from Woz, that his secret is out.

One theme that continues in this game changer season, where Woz is now the puppet on a string, is Harlee’s lying to Cristina about Miguel. Granted, the lie is a necessity since Santos snapped the ex-con’s neck like a brittle twig.

(It has to be said that this was one of the most satisfying moments in the first season and the recap, where they showed Miguel getting his just desserts once again was still a highpoint.)

Woz blames Harlee for his murder of Saperstein and turns everything around as he tries to make himself into the victim in this scenario.

Shades of Blue starts out of the gate without any of the errors apparent in season one. There are no continuity gaffes and the storyline manages to keep up the tension started in the series’ first outing.

Liotta continues to be spellbinding as the head of the dirty cop gang and Lopez may still be the best dressed detective on the NYPD’s rolls but the shift from stealing millions to setting up Julia Ayres as a target for Stahl loses nothing.

Warren Cole still manages to make Stahl disturbing, annoying and creepy as hell. This actor has tapped into something that makes his fixated FBI agent just this side of scary.  When the character handcuffs Gina to the radiator pipe in the room and tells the woman she will disappear, we feel her fear is justified.

When the local mobster is framed and arrested, he kills an underling right in front of Anna Gunn’s character. This seems to be a clear signal that death and murder will be just as prominent in the second season of the series.

It remains to be seen whether the show can maintain the tension and dance the same fine line as season one. Liotta’s character is, apparently, on a mission to punish Harlee while simultaneously going after Stahl. He may well wrest the show from Lopez this time around.

Shades of Blue airs Sundays on NBC.


Guest starring Anna Gunn as Julia Ayres

Author: Mike's Film Talk

Former Actor, Former Writer, Former Journalist, USAF Veteran, Former Member Nevada Film Critics Society

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