Stars: Delroy Lindo, Billy Lush, Matt Lauria, Jennifer Beals, Jason Clarke, Devin Kelley and Todd Williams
Writers: Davey Holmes
Director:  Guy Ferland
Network: Fox, airs Monday nights
Original Telecast: February 21, 2011

I didn’t expect THE CHICAGO CODE to stay on the creative high of its first two episodes, so the good, not great,  “Gillis, Chase and Baby Face” was no surprise.

However, it doesn’t mean the episode didn’t deliver. It’s a solid hour, better than most procedurals – I’ll give it that.

However, when you’re trying to establish an over-riding arc that’s going to linger throughout the season, there are going to be episodes where you need to set things into motion for bigger pay-offs later. That’s the case with this episode which begins with a bank robbery gone wrong and ends with Alderman Gibbons (Delroy Lindo) making his first big play to make Superintendent Teresa Colvin (Jennifer Beals) look bad.

While the constant chess playing between Gibbons and Colvin is fun to watch, this episode really proves that this is the Jarek Wysocki (Jason Clarke) show. His wild-card detective character is the propulsive heart of the series and it’s great to watch him be so good and so unpredictable all at the same time. It’s also great to watch the ever-evolving relationship between him and his partner Caleb (Matt Lauria). Partners never last long with Jarek, but Caleb continues to prove a nice counter-balance. Caleb grows on you, and it’s clear he’s growing on Wysocki.

Now that it’s clear to his fellow cops that he has an “in” with the Superintendent, everyone thinks he’s feeding names to her for people who should be laid off (which isn’t the case). It’s a lesson in office politics, that comes to a head and showcases Wysocki’s temper as well.

The Superintendent also learns about office politics, when her trusted right hand man turns out to be corrupt and was willing to sell her out for some extra money from Gibbons. Unlike 24, the mole was found within one episode.

I love how smart the writing is on the show and how we’re slowly uncovering the quirks and rhythms of the all the well-drawn characters.

The direction of the episode by Guy Ferland was stellar too – particularly when it comes to the action. THE CHICAGO CODE has an energy and feel unlike any cop show out there, and “Gillis, Chase and Baby Face” keeps that excellent quality intact.

It may not have been a perfect episode, but it definitely proves that when a show needs some time to create an expositional episode, there’s still enough meat keep your eyes glued to the screen.

AGREE? DISAGREE? Let us know what you think – leave your comment below.

CLICK HERE for AX’s exclusive interview with CHICAGO CODE star Delroy Lindo

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