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The Shield

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The Shield is an Emmy Award and Golden Globe-winning hour-long serial drama series aired by the FX Network. It was created by Shawn Ryan and premiered in the United States on March 12, 2002.

The show, starring Michael Chiklis as Detective Vic Mackey, focuses on the events surrounding the fictional district of Farmington in Los Angeles, and the precinct assigned to protect it. The show was controversial for its portrayal of corrupt police officers.

The Shield ended its run after its seventh season on November 25, 2008 with a critically acclaimed finale. 

Season 1 Edit

Season 1 starts with the murder of Detective Terry Crowley by Vic Mackey, and the aftermath of it as Captain David Aceveda tries to bring Mackey and the Strike Team down. It also shows how Mackey uses drug dealer Rondell Robinson to control local drug trade, as well as the corrupt actions of Assistant Chief Ben Gilroy.

Other subplots include Claudette Wyms and Dutch Wagenbach tracking down a serial killer, and Officer Julien Lowe's training under Danny Sofer while struggling with his homosexuality.

Season 2 Edit

Season 2 revolves around two main plots: the first one involves the Strike Team pursuit of a brutal new drug lord, Armadillo Quintero, a sadistic child rapist, who likes to burn his rivals as he begins to take over the drug trade in Farmington. The second one features the Strike Team's plan to rip off the Armenian Money Train.

Other subplots include Danny Sofer being involved in a shooting of a Muslim man and its consequences, Mackey trying to deal with his estranged family, Julien being the subject of harassment from his friends, and the Barn being under the supervision of a civilian auditor.

Season 3 Edit

Season 3 follows the aftermath of the Money Train Heist carried by the Strike Team at the end of Season 2, as Aceveda and Wagenbach start suspecting of them. As the Strike Team makes efforts to lay low, the Armenians led by Margos Dezerian start hunting down the responsible of the heist. This events bring tension between the group as they head for an inevitable break-up. Also, the arrival of the Decoy Squad threatens the tenure of the team.

During the season, Aceveda is preparing to leave the Barn for the City Council, while Claudette Wyms has been promised the position and is supervising the Strike Team in preparation. Meanwhile, Dutch investigates a disturbing series of rapes. Also, Julien copes with his recent marriage.

Season 4Edit

Season 4 deals with Captain Monica Rawling taking over as captain of the Barn, while implementing controversial federal asset forfeiture laws to stop crime in Farmington, which puts her head-to-head with drug lord Antwon Mitchell. The other main plot involves Rawling empowerment of Vic Mackey, after the disbandment of the Strike Team, while Shane Vendrell and his new partner find themselves in a dangerous alliance with Mitchell.

Other subplots feature David Aceveda (now a City Councilman) dealing with the psychological aftermath of a sexual assault in the previous season, Claudette and Dutch being marginalized as detectives by the District Attorney after Wyms feuded with her, and Julien's opposition to Rawling's decisions.

Season 5 Edit

Season 5 revolves around an Internal Affairs investigation led by Lieutenant Jon Kavanaugh against the Strike Team to bring Vic Mackey down. To achieve this, he uses a heroin distribution charge on Curtis Lemansky to force him to turn over the Team. Meanwhile, Mackey and the Team go to extremes to stop the investigation.

Other subplots include the pregnancy of Danny Sofer, the ineptitude of Steve Billings as the new captain, and Julien's training of rookie officer Tina Hanlon.

Promosode Edit

This 15-minute episode , which originally debuted online on Google Video, follows the aftermath of Season 5 and serves as a prologue for Season 6. In this episode, Vic is seen attending Lem's funeral with Shane and Mara in tow. A flashback showing the entire Strike team at a fighting rally at the Barn hosted by Aceveda is later shown.

Season 6 Edit

Season 6 features the attempts of the Strike Team to find out who murdered Curtis Lemansky, and the consequences of finding out who it was. Meanwhile, Shane Vendrell deals with the guilt of what he did. While Mackey tries to avenge the death of Lem, he finds out he is being forced to retire by the Chief, while a new member is added to the Strike Team to replace him.

Other subplots include Claudette Wyms' tenure as the new captain, and the attempts of Dutch to deal with Billings as his new partner. Also, the investigations of the murder of several Mexicans ends up leading to Cruz Pezuela, an important developer and supporter of Aceveda's campaign for mayor.

Season 7 Edit

Season 7 features Vic Mackey's attempt to bring down Cruz Pezuela before being forced out of his job, by making separate alliances with Aceveda and federal agent Olivia Murray. Also, Mackey and Gardocki have to deal with Shane's threats to reveal all of the Strike Team's crimes, which prompts them to start a gang war between the Armenians and the Mexicans to try to cover themselves.

Other subplots feature Claudette Wyms dealing with her illness, Dutch's obsession with capturing a teenage serial killer, Danny's attempt of keeping her newborn son away from his real father, and Mackey's attempt to keep his family close to him.

Awards Edit

The Shield was honored with numerous awards and nominations. The following is a selected list of awards the show has won. See the complete list of awards and nominations at the Internet Movie Database.

  • 2002
Emmy Awards - Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series - Michael Chiklis
TCA Award - Individual Achievement in Drama - Michael Chiklis
  • 2003
Satellite Awards - Best Performance by an Actress in a Series (Drama) - CCH Pounder
Golden Globes - Best Television Series (Drama)
Golden Globes - Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series (Drama) - Michael Chiklis
  • 2004
Satellite Awards - Best Performance by an Actor in a Series (Drama) - Michael Chiklis
Satellite Awards - Best Performance by an Actress in a Series (Drama) - CCH Pounder
Satellite Awards - Best Television Series (Drama)
  • 2006
Peabody Award
  • 2007
ALMA Award - Outstanding Supporting Actor (Television Series, Mini-Series or Television Movie) - Benito Martinez
Vision Award - Best Actor (Drama) - Forrest Whitaker
  • 2009 (nominated)
Vision Award - Best Actor (Drama) - Benito Martinez

Media tie-ins Edit

Specials Edit

Books and comics Edit

  • There are five comics written by Jeff Mariotte and illustrated by Jean Diaz titled The Shield: Spotlight.
  • There is one book called The Shield: Notes from the Barn: The Elite Strike Team Files by David Jacobs (2004, Paperback)

Other media Edit

  • The Shield: The Game is an official PlayStation 2 game set between the third and fourth season.
  • There is one soundtrack titled The Shield: Music from the Street.
  • All seven seasons have been released on DVD.


  • After the show's run, edited-for-network TV versions were shown on various hispanic TV channels as well as The CW (formerly known as The WB network), both of which are housed in the United States. These networks often aired the reruns after local news reports and after midnight central time.
  • In 2013, the newly remodeled cable TV network NUVO TV began airing reruns of the show. While the show's content was still rated TV-MA, it still bleeped out certain graphic language used in the various episodes. It reairs nationwide every Wednesday, starting at 8 PM eastern time and 9 PM central time.

External links Edit

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