‘Shades Of Blue’ — Is Jennifer Lopez’s New Cop Drama Worth Your Time?

Although she has not graced televisions since the mid-90s, Jennifer Lopez is making her return to the small screens with her newest police drama, Shades of Blue. While television has seen both good and bad crime dramas in the past, where does Shades of Blue rank among them? And, more importantly, is Lopez’s new cop drama worth your time?

According to International Business Times, the series centers on Lopez’s character, Detective Harlee Santos. Santos works in a corrupt environment where her boss, Ray Liotta’s Detective Matt Wozniak, is the leader of a group of dirty cops.

However, Santos isn’t exactly the purest of police officers. As it turns out, she has been involved in a number of different frame jobs and illegal activity. After the FBI catches Santos for her shady dealings, the character decides to become an informant instead of spending time in prison. The only problem is that she is forced to gather information against Wozniak, who also happens to be her longtime mentor on the force.

“I always wanted to be a good cop,” Lopez states during her character’s opening monologue. “But there’s no straight line to that. I always told myself that the end would justify the means. But now that I’m at the end, I can’t justify anything. It happened so slowly I didn’t realize. And so quickly I never saw it coming.”

Despite this blurring of right and wrong, The Daily Beast is reporting that the new series fails to bring anything earth shattering to the crime genre. While the characters justify their immoral actions as a means to an end, the show lacks originality. So far, the series includes elements from a number of popular crime shows, including The Shield, The Wire, and even Law and Order.

Jennifer Lopez in 'Shades of Blue.' [Image via NBC] Jennifer Lopez in ‘Shades of Blue.’ [Image via NBC]That being said, what makes Shades of Blue a good crime drama isn’t the storylines but the actors who play the morally corrupt officers. For her part, Lopez exceeds expectations in her role as Santos and manages to play her character with enough enthusiasm to draw enough viewers to watch the new series.

While Lopez definitely pulls her own weight in Shades of Blue, Liotta’s role as Wozniak really makes the series special. According to the NY Post, Liotta breathes life into the series with his Brooklyn based accent and adds a level of intensity perfect for any police drama.

Speaking of Liotta’s character, his interactions with Santos provide enough drama and entertainment to make fans want more. Not only is Santos gathering inside information for the feds, but she has a past with Wozniak that includes some shady police work. In fact, Wozniak helped Santos frame an ex for murder.

Jennifer Lopez and Ray Liotta in 'Shades of Blue.' [Image via NBC] Jennifer Lopez and Ray Liotta in ‘Shades of Blue.’ [Image via NBC]The tension between Wozniak and Santos provides the main drama for the series. In particular, fans are left guessing when Wozniak will learn of Santos’ betrayal, and what the consequences of such a discovery will be. All the while, Santos tries her best to keep her family, including her daughter, away from harm.

Given the strength of characters, Lopez’s new show offers enough drama and high stakes to make it a show worth watching. Although fans will not be blown away by the storyline or the show’s originality, Lopez and Liotta carry enough weight to make the show a step above the ordinary.

However, if fans are looking for more of a trailblazing show that sets itself apart from the typical crime drama, then Shades of Blue is not likely to satisfy.

The first season of Shades of Blue, starring Jennifer Lopez, Ray Liotta, Drea de Matteo, Warren Kole, and Dayo Okeniyi is set to debut January 7 on NBC.

Tell us! Are you tuning in for Shades of Blue? Let us know in the comments below.

[Image via NBC]