“Group 14 is locked, loaded”
The second season of DEA debuts on Spike TV Tuesday, February 10th. It will be a new year, and a new city (now that they’ve done Detroit, they are moving on). But try as I might, I was all over Spike’s website, and I can’t tell at all what city it is going to be. I guess they are keeping that a big secret until they unveil their new show tonight. At the same time, the first season, DEA: Detroit, is coming out on DVD from Paramount Home Entertainment.
The first season sees a team of DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) officers trying to take down dealers and grow-ops and crack houses on the mean streets of Detroit. The cover of the DVD box says “you think you know what the letters DEA mean. You don’t.” Or something like that. I no longer have the box in front of me because I’m typing this up at work. I do remember, however, watching the series trying to figure out howmy perception, that “DEA” stood for “Drug Enforcement Agency” would be somehow changed by this program. I am still waiting. I still think that’s what those letters mean.
It really is a pretty cool world to observe though, that of the DEA agents who take down dealers, bust down doors, flip informants, and pile out of their team van like they’re the A-Team. Because this is a Spike TV show, a lot of emphasis is placed on the danger in the job. Every situation, according to the narrator, is “potentially deadly”. Of course, this is likely true – every situation could well end in a gunfight or a car chase or something bad. But after the fiftieth time hearing “potentially deadly”, I was pretty sure that no one would die.
The narrator treats this show like it’s Cops on steroids – only the most dangerous criminals, only the most Potentially Deadly Busts, Locked And Loaded, Guns At The Ready, and so forth. Which is fine, but tiresome. And really, there is more action on Cops, although that action usually involves shirtless wife-beaters, and is generally far less interesting.
In Season One, Detroit, you get to see all the behind-the scenes stuff. Talks with confidential informants. Drug dens full of HIV-positive needles. Taped phone conversations, car chases that last three seconds before being abandoned, and all the black humour and stuff that I would assume goes on behind the scenes at the drug task force. (I must say though, I’m not sure how concealed the identities really are of the people whose faces get blurred. That worries me a little.)
I like the show, I think it’s interesting, and for the time being the episodes are all available, in their entirety, free at http://www.spike.com/show/26319 It’s a good way to see if you would like the show, and since those episodes will likely not be up forever, the series is now available on DVD should you want to check it out further.