The Shield season six -- An early look
Recently Jonathan and I got on the phone with The Shield's Walton Goggins, but if you read the interview you'll note we hadn't yet seen the first six episodes released to the press. Having now seen those episodes, I think our line of questioning would have been quite different.
As you may already know, the upcoming sixth season of The Shield was originally meant to be the second half of what we saw of season five, but given the long wait (partly due to Michael Chiklis being busy with Fantastic Four) it was decided to instead dub this as a new, but short, season for the series. However, it won't be its last -- there's a seventh season to look forward to as well.
Season six picks up not far from the events of last season's finale episode, where we saw the dramatic end to Strike Teamer Lem's life at the hands of Shane. As far as the rest of The Barn is concerned, Vic is taking some leave time to grieve over Lem's death, but we quickly learn that Vic has his own way of grieving for murdered friends. Technically the new season begins after the events of the "promosode" that aired online not long ago, though missing that promosode won't make you lost.
Kavanaugh (played once again by Forest Whitaker) is still working every angle he possibly can to bring Mackey down, and the strength of his resolve goes further than you may think. Kavanaugh is actually a smaller player this season than he had been earlier; Vic's hunt for Lem's killer puts his problems with Kavanaugh quite far into the back seat.
There are some moments in these first six episodes that stand apart from others throughout the entire series. In particular, episode four has what I believe is an Emmy-worthy performance by Chiklis. In fact, this entire episode is filled with incredible performances all around and is packed with some key plot-moving moments. Episode six is almost equally incredible, with an ending bit of dialog that will have you cursing that you have to wait another week to watch more (in my case I have to wait even longer! Boo hoo!)
What's definitely an interesting twist of sorts is how likable Mackey's planned replacement, Alex O'Loughlin's Kevin Hiatt is. Of course there's the usual cold shoulder by some of the Strike Teamers, though they seem to begin seeing his worth as he tags along on their busts. Mackey has his own reasons for behaving nicely to Hiatt, as you'll find out.
Of course as with any of these early look posts, I don't want to give anything away to ruin the thrill of watching these with fresh eyes. All I will say is that there are plenty of spoilers floating around, and I can confirm all of them. You get that feeling that the writers have the end of this series in their sights, but the ride to get there works so smoothly and yet so aggressively that it just feels like the right path.
Catch The Shield's sixth season premiere Tuesday, April 3rd at 10PM Eastern on FX.