Long before he was cracking skulls as Vic Mackey on The Shield, Michael Chiklis was Tony Scali, the Commissioner of the East Bridge Police Department. The show launched Chiklis's career and when you've seen both The Commish and The Shield, you really get the sense that this guy could play any role. Scali was the complete opposite of Mackey, whereas Mackey solved his problems through violence and intimidation, throwing the book out the window, Scali solved crime by using the book to his advantage. Scali would use his cleverness, his charm, and even his wit to get the answers he needed and was the true opposite of Vic Mackey in every sense of the word. The Commish was so much more than just a simple cop show, it was a family show, and during it's five year run on ABC it was way ahead of it's time. The show ran from 1991-1995 and even then was exploring such topics as bullying, gay marriage, the emergence of the internet, and in one first season episode, way back in 1991, Tony states that reality TV was the wave of the future! Scali wasn't just the clever cop who ran a large police department and solved crimes through extremely clever and unconventional methods, he was a family man. Much of the show intertwines his work with his family and he's just as clever, witty, and delightful at home as he is in the station. As I said earlier, this show launched the career of Michael Chiklis who now is a multiple Emmy Award winner and one of the best people you could have on board for a new series. Veteran actress, Theresa Saldana, plays his wife Rachel, and she's more than just a housewife. She's just as intuitive as her husband and is a working mom, another aspect of the show that was ahead of it's time. Their son David, was the first major role for Kaj-Erik Eriksen, who has seemingly been in everything. You may not recognize his name, but you'll definitely recognize his face from one thing or another. I have been watching the Commish regularly for about 3 months now and I can tell you honestly, this show never gets old. No two cases or personalities are the same, and you'd be hard pressed to find award winning novels that are better written. This is one of the most clever, fun, and heartwarming shows I have ever seen, and even though it's been off the air for nearly 20 years, it's still as relevant today as it was then and I can not possible recommend it enough.
when i first saw the commish when it aired in austraila i fell head over heels for it. i could'nt get enought of it. tony is the type of boss that you would do anything for. hes a tuff cop who does'nt break the rules and would do any thing he can to help you. he has a heart of gold. he also has a great sense of humor and makes you laugh. the storys where great and its a great show. i hope this show is bought out of dvd soon. this is one cop show that i can watch over and over and never get tired of it.
The Commish was a slightly different cop show - the emphasis here was not on heavy violence but on "the commish" himself, this gave the show more grounded. Played by that gifted actor, Michael Chiklis. Chiklis brought great likability to the role of Tony Scali, a good guy in a small town dedicated to family and his work as police commissioner. Teresa Saldana played his wife, and the two were totally believable together. The cop part of the show sported a fine cast including Geoffrey Nauffts, Melinda McGraw, and Gina Belafonte. The emphasis really seemed to be on warmth, as you really looked forward to seeing the whole group. I never found the episodes as dark or as interesting as other police shows, but that was never the point of "The Commish." Like many Stephen Cannell shows, the series was driven by the personality of the main character and an excellent ensemble. "Wiseguy" may have had more hard-hitting scripts, and "Rockford Files" may have been more fun, but "The Commish" was comfortable and highly entertaining.
My father once said he would always watch a show were the hero is a middle-aged, overweight, balding man.
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