Prodigal Son season 2 spoilers follow.
Prodigal Son co-creator Chris Fedak has opened up about the show’s police brutality storyline, following the season 2 premiere.
The Fox crime drama series returned last night (January 12) for its second outing, though one particularly disturbing scene sees Detective JT Tarmel (Frank Harts) assaulted in an alleyway by other cops who think he is a criminal.
Speaking about incorporating the storyline, Fedak admitted that given their show is a police procedural and in the wake George Floyd’s death and Black Lives Matter protests last year, they knew that they “would have to address this story”.
“[Co-creator] Sam [Sklaver] and I are two white guys, so we don’t have the depth of knowledge in regards to this story,” he told TVLine. “But what that means is, we begin to research, and we talk to our cast.
“I remember texting with Frank [Harts, who plays JT] early on as we’re watching the news and going, ‘How are we going to come up with what we have to say and how we reflect this on our show?’
“We go to our writers, we do research, we go to police officers who are out there doing the job today. We do have a diverse cast, and we can talk about this from the perspective of what it’s like to be an African-American cop, and what happens when something goes wrong, and then what happens inside the NYPD.”
He continued: “We also knew this wasn’t something you could solve in one episode, and we didn’t want to do a ‘very special episode’ of Prodigal Son. But we also can’t solve racism, of course. So for us, it’s a challenge, but it was a challenge we knew we had to address.
“We’re excited that the show can do something where you go from a killer trying to kill Bright with an axe, and then you go down to this very searing moment torn right out of the headlines.
“And luckily for us, we have amazing writers and an amazing cast. Everyone wanted to step up to this. There was not a moment where anyone said, ‘We shouldn’t do this.’ It was like, ‘We have to do this.'”
Opening up about how the attack will affect both JT and Detective Dani Powell (Aurora Perrineau), Fedak explained: “It doesn’t settle, and that’s the problem. Frank still has real-world issues. We could easily say, for our characters, ‘This is wrong and something has to be done about it.’ But now you get into the awful stickiness of what happens next.
“And for Frank, he’s got a kid on the way, and he has a family, and he needs to figure out what the right thing to do is, not only for himself, but his family and his kid in the future.
“And Dani comes at it from a more idealistic perspective: a young police officer who knows right, who knows wrong, who thinks something needs to be done. For us, not only is it an important topic, but it’s also a very dramatic topic for our characters to address, in that they would have different perspectives on how to deal with it.”
Prodigal Son airs on FOX in the US.
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Published at Wed, 13 Jan 2021 05:32:00 +0000