CBS’s “SWAT” team talks “Taking on the Trump Years”

shemar moore in SWAT

Another Hollyweird TV show I won’t be watching.

From Hollywood Reporter: CBS’ forthcoming SWAT remake has the same title, the same font and the same theme music as the original ’70s cop drama, but star Shemar Moore insists the similarities end there.

“I call it SWAT 2017,” he told reporters Tuesday at the Television Critics Association summer press tour. “We’re taking on real life. We’re taking on the Trump years.”

Inspired by the film of the same name, the drama centers on a locally born and bred S.W.A.T. sergeant (Moore) who is torn between loyalty to the streets and duty to his fellow officers when he’s tasked to run a specialized tactical unit that is the last stop in law enforcement in Los Angeles.

The pilot kicks off after an unarmed teenager is killed by police — an event all too similar to recent real-world events, which is exactly what the series will lean into. “It’s not Black Lives Matter, it’s All Lives Matter,” Moore said. “It’s fear. It’s racism. It’s terrorism. It’s subject matter today.”

Executive producer Aaron Rahsaan Thomas (The Get Down) originally pitched the series based on his own divisive experiences with the police growing up in Kansas City. Thomas explained he had a neighbor who was a victim of police violence growing up. “On the other hand, another neighbor of mine was a police officer so we had a love-hate relationship with police officers growing up,” he explained.

Aware of the “conversation that’s been in the zeitgeist lately” with the Black Lives Matter movement, Thomas and fellow exec producer Shawn Ryan (The Shield) made sure to examine both sides of that difficult conversation. “This is a pro-cop show but this is also a pro-community show,” Ryan said. “I want to see how the cops deal with people. I want to see how the people deal with cops.”

Subsequently, Moore’s character not only works as an officer in South Central but he also lives in the neighborhood where he works. “We wanted to explore a character that had his foot in both sides,” Thomas said, pointing to the unique perspective that would come with such a character.

“I think the characters on this show are heroes and I think you can be pro-police and yet also be pro-truth that there are certain incidents and times and events that shouldn’t happen,” Ryan explained. “That’s what fascinated me about this show is [to] look at the police and the communities they’re policing and sort of figure out if there’s way to bring these communities closer together.”

Ryan later added: “I think viewers recognize the truth, appreciate the truth and will embrace the truth when you show it to them.”

However, the veteran exec producer admitted he was worried about how much CBS would embrace the show’s more honest approach in the early stages of SWAT’s development. “‘Is this something CBS is really going to want us to tell?,'” Ryan recalled thinking. However, he said the leadership at the network “encouraged us to tell the story and tell the truth that we wanted to tell,” he said. Despite the recent change at the top, with Kelly Kahl and Thom Sherman taking over for Glenn Geller, “we still get encouraged on a daily basis to tell the story we want to tell, to the tell truth about the police and the communities.”

While no one on the panel promised definitively that SWAT would offer a solution, Moore was optimistic that the show would at least start a conversation (in addition to offering action scenes that Ryan promised will “be a notch above” the CBS standard.

“Look at the news. We’re based in L.A., but it’s a perfect time for SWAT. We’re seeing S.W.A.T. stories all over the world,” Moore said. “Hopefully we’re going to show you both sides of the conversation: blue, civilians, both sides of the argument. Maybe not fixing it, but bridging the gap.”

SWAT premieres Nov. 2 on CBS.


16 responses to “CBS’s “SWAT” team talks “Taking on the Trump Years”

  1. Since O’Reilly left, we hardly watch FOX. And we’re cured of CBS and NBS.
    We stopped CNN a long time ago, and really have no clue what the hell MSNBC is all about.
    DISH started charging for BLAZE so we dropped that too.
    As if the establishment cared. You’d think the advertisers would, but people will buy toilet paper no matter what.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. This really just looks like just another macho trash show. I’m pretty sure my schedule is busy the evening that it runs!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Auntie Lulu yes, it sounds like another macho trash show but have you asked yourself what may be going behind the scenes? All those muscles and roughness could be just for show. The action that is produced is the kind of action not for tv audience.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Shemar Moore: “We’re taking on real life. We’re taking on the Trump years.”

    How pompous.

    I predict your show won’t be around to “take on the Trump years” — and FOTM will do our best to ensure that!

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Is “Shemar” like “Tyrone”?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Kevin J Lankford

    shemar??…….Hope this ain’t another somali muslim refugee cop story.


  6. I noticed last week’s episode of L&O SVU was directly drawn from the whole pizza-gate thing in the news a month or so ago. Made it out to look like the alt-right was just loony. I was only watching because they pre-empted the show I was looking for. And I must say, time has not been kind to Mariska Hargitay.
    At the same time slot, there was another “reality cop” show on another network doing a similar thing of showing recent alt-right influenced events in the worst light. Great to know Hollywood doesn’t just mirror reality; it attempts to distort and re-create it in order to influence society. Probably the easiest way to change beliefs and opinions… in a society where the majority doesn’t take the time or have the interest to actually seek out the real news and truth. “The media” has become the opium of the great, unwashed masses.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Trump years….BS, this got worse under the Obama years. Trump is trying to clean it up. They placed Moore there since he is so popular and is a nice guy, normally.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well,, I always thought so before. Not so much now. Clearly, the rest of the cast, and better writing, was carrying him on Criminal Minds. I’d hoped this would be good, but all this time in, and it’s just another police show.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. I’m so glad I don’t watch TV. Just listen to the hype. Creating dialectics is PRECISELY what they do. It’s their job.

    The are just another facet of social engineering. You couldn’t get an honest show on there for any amount of money.

    When I grew up cops were awful. They still are. When one is treated unfairly or injured or killed innocently, we mourn. If they are acting like Gestapo (I’m sorry, they DO THAT), we call them on it. That’s as honest as it gets.

    Frankly there are way too many of them and they are not a force that gets better with numbers. They are not there for us. They are there for the elite.

    I often kid around about alternative ways of dealing with things. Sometimes I mean it. The way we do that now doesn’t work. It is insane to do more of it.

    Rather than glorify and encourage more of the same insane behavior, why not take the same time and effort and rethink how we do things. If most communities would be better off by having thugs removed, let’s remove them. We could send them places like, I don’t know, how ’bout Chicago?


  9. I’ll take Blue Bloods any day over this SWAT cop show.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Perhaps this will be a blm swat team that goes out and murders cops?


  11. After one episode, half the family was ready to turn it off. We watched two recorded on the DVR, and that was enough to deal the decision by most of the family. I have tried watching since, but it’ getting very dull; just another vanilla cop show. I can’t imagine this one will last past one season. If Moore wasn’t so stuck on injecting his own personal politics, he might have had a shot here. Maybe this is some of that “karma” he was talking about when dissing a far more talented actor? Won’t miss this one when it’s gone.

    Liked by 2 people

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