Kyra Sedgwick's "The Closer" returns to the TNT lineup for its final batch of six original episodes tomorrow night (7/9) - and they're absolutely must-see viewing for fans of the smart, bitingly funny police procedural. Sedgwick's candy-gobbling Deputy Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson is well on her way to her day of reckoning for all those rules she's been bending, smashing and ignoring through these seven seasons of squeezing, tricking, cajoling and seducing confessions from her criminal quarry.
Will Brenda be taken down for her morally problematic behavior? Shouldn't she be?
Sedgwick said that she agreed to do additional episodes because creator James Duff "really wanted to end with an epic journey. I wanted to be supportive of that."
Indeed. The actress already has an Emmy for her portrayal of Brenda. These last episodes land her in compelling, heart-rending territory - that could very well lead to Emmy No. 2.
Following " The Closer" is Eric McCormack's new "Perception," which aims to be a sort of "Beautiful Mind" meets crime drama - with McCormack as a genius neuroscientist who is afflicted with schizophrenia.
"In so many ways, it was what I was looking for because, as I had said in the past, I was not going to opt for a lawyer again," McCormack told AARP.org, referencing his beloved Will Truman character on "Will & Grace." "The fact this guy is a university professor, and has this whole other point of view - there's not a lot of characters on television as interesting," he said. "I love the idea that his brain is so big, and no one has more knowledge of the brain than he does, but he is still a victim of his brain."
His Dr. Daniel Pierce is enlisted by an admiring former student, now FBI agent (Rachael Leigh Cook) to consult on a seemingly impenetrable case. But the chaos of his condition, including hallucinations who give vital clues, upstages the mystery-solving aspect of the show. It's an intriguing ride, and it will be interesting to see where they go with Dr. Pierce and company. Creators Ken Biller and Mike Sussman have sought expert guidance in getting the mental illness right, stresses McCormack, who'd love to raise public awareness of such woes: "Hopefully we'll show the audience we know what we're talking about, and that we're as sympathetic and accurate as we could be."