There are few authorities within the entertainment industry who have a perspective talking about law enforcement on television than Andre Braugher. Making his on-screen debut as Detective Winston Blake in the Kojak TV movies opposite Telly Savalas, he ended up playing other figures in the criminal justice system like District Attorney Frank Morris in Striking Distance (1993), his most iconic role to date in Det. Frank Pembleton on Homicide: Life on the Street. Judge Loren Price on the short-lived The Jury (2004), defense attorney Bayard Ellis in Law & Order Special Victims Unit, and now found new life in comedy as police captain Raymond Holt on NBC's Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Braugher spoke to Entertainment Weekly about possible changes needed to shine a more realistic light on TV cops while also taking a stand against police brutality.
"It's a very complicated subject, but I think they have to be portrayed much more realistically, in terms of this," Braugher said. "The convention… that police breaking the law is okay, because somehow it's in the service of some greater good, is a myth that needs to be destroyed." He notes Brooklyn Nine-Nine will also grapple with the reality of widespread police misconduct moving forward. "We're going into an eighth season with a new challenge which is that everyone's knowledge and feelings about police… have been profoundly affected," the two-time Emmy Award winner continued. "What we have from [creator] Dan [Goor] is a commitment to write a smart show that will not attempt to hide itself in a fantasy. So the Nine-Nine is going to have to deal with what we know about the New York Police Department." Originally premiering on FOX, the network canceled the show after five seasons in 2018 before NBC picked it up breathing new life. The series tackled racial profiling in a previous episode "Moo Moo".
Coincidentally, star Andy Samberg got his start on the long-running Saturday Night Live before landing the series. Sand To hear more on Braugher's favorite Brooklyn Nine-Nine cold opens and his favorite memories of Holt's dog Cheddar. You can listen to the podcast below.