Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Debuting June 13, 2005 on TNT,the hour-long cop drama The Closer starred Kyra Sedgwick as Brenda Johnson, a blunt, outspoken law enforcement officer from Atlanta who is brought from Atlanta to Los Angeles and appointed deputy police chief of the LAPD Priority Homicide Division. It was Johnson's job to tackle high-profile homicide cases and solve them with a minimum of muss, fuss and bad public relations. The man who hired Brenda was Assistant Police Chief Will Pope (J.K. Simmons), whose decision, contrary to popular relief, was not motivated by the fact that he and Brenda had once been lovers; Brenda's main job qualification was her uncanny ability to "read" personalities and to extract confessions from perpetrators. But though he initially supported his choice, Pope began having second thoughts about Brenda the moment she set foot in LA, and their working relationship at best was tense. Never one to worry about trampling on other people's feelings, Chief Johnson was far from popular with her coworkers, notably Commander Taylor (Robert Gossett), who had originally been in line for her job. As for Det. Lt. Provenza (G.W. Bailey), he couldn't wait to see Brenda fall on his face, even though he admired her highly unorthodox style--and, thanks to a previous foul-up, he owed her his job. Tech expert Lt. Michael Tao (Michael Paul Chan), street-gang specialist Det. Julio Sanchez (Raymond Cruz), and Johnson's chief assistant Det. Lt. Andy Flynn (Anthony Denison) were others who found it hard to express fondness for the boss, despite the fact that she invariably got results. The only person on the team that Brenda could call a friend was the politely deferential and intensely analytical Sgt. David Gabriel (Corey Reynolds), though even he clashed with Johnson when she disapproved of his romance with Det. Irene Daniels (Gina Ravera). Brenda herself enjoyed a cozy personal relationship with Priority Homicide's FBI liason, agent Fritz Howard (Jon Tenney), a fellow Atlantan. But by the series' second season, this romance was showing signs of deteriation thanks to the pressures of the job at hand. The Closer was created by James Duff, whose other film and TV credits included The War at Home and The D.A.
deputy, homicide-detective, law-enforcement, police-chief, public-relations, rival