Recurring Episodes: The Shield, Season One, Episode Ten: “Dragonchasers”

The ShieldRecurring Episodes is a regular feature taking an in-depth look each week at a single episode of television, placing it in the context of the larger TV landscape to show what works, what doesn’t, what’s important, and what’s entertaining about the shows of the new Golden Age of Television, and the series that served as influence on those shows. Learn more about Recurring Episodes here

Welcome to the first real installment of Recurring Episodes. This week, the show under the microscope is “Dragonchasers,” a first-season episode of FX’s groundbreaking police drama The Shield. Warning: Spoilers for the episode, and the series in general, are present in this piece.

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Recurring Episodes: The Beginning

In the past ten years or more, television has gone through an artistic renaissance, with cable dramas from The Sopranos to Breaking Bad helping to redefine the medium as the preeminent form of long-form visual storytelling. Even so, as both premium cable and its basic brother allow creative people to stretch out, telling the kinds of stories that might not fit on one of the major networks, network television is dying a slow death, as reality shows dominate more and more of the primetime schedule. Continue reading