On Detroit 1-8-7

Detroit 1-8-7 premiered on Tuesday (10 p.m., on ABC). Did you watch it? Did you even know about it?

It’s been a pretty big deal ’round these parts. All kinds of people saying it’s going to destroy our image. It’s only going to position us as the murder capital of the nation, etc. etc.

And then there’s those of us who don’t think the show will be the end of us. After all, our image is already in the crapper. People already think of us as the place where you better bring heat. What can a measly hour of TV do to change or reaffirm that?

Truth is, a TV show ain’t gonna save us — or ruin us. At least, that’s what I hoped would be the case.

After the first episode, I *think* I’m right.

The show opened with a bit of funk combined with gritty shots of the city. From the shiny downtown to the downtrodden homes, they are all real shots of the city. Even down to the street signs, this IS Detroit. Now, there’s some controversy that some of the scenes were shot in Atlanta, but I’ve heard the show’s producers say that that was for the pilot only and all future episodes will be shot in the city.

Personally, I only noticed a couple hiccups that didn’t look like Detroit. As I’m sure you can imagine, Detroit has its own unique look. The show is smart to take up residence here and take advantage of all of the amazing locations that really can’t be found anywhere else.

Bottom line? I’m a fan so far.

I want you to watch this show. I want you to see my city and I want you to love it — abandoned buildings and grit and all. Because I do.

But, I want you to watch it with a caveat. It’s a caveat that anyone with common sense should be able to recognize, but a caveat that the show’s naysayers thought people wouldn’t be able handle.

It’s this: Just because this is a show about homicide, doesn’t mean homicide is the only thing that happens in Detroit.

Just like Law & Order, NYPD Blue, or any of the plethora of cop shows that take place in NYC, it’s just a backdrop, not the norm. Do you stop visiting New York just because Benson & Stabler solved a rape case on last week’s SVU? Sure, there’s crime in New York, but there’s also high fashion, power, and the elite. Hence, shows like Sex and the City and Gossip Girl.

In fact, I’d venture to say that Detroit 1-8-7 has the potential to serve Detroit like Sex and the City served New York — making the city an extra and equally important character. That is, if they get the details right. It’s “pop”, not “soda” in these parts.

So, check out Detroit 1-8-7 and think of it like this. It’s an interesting cop show, with a fabulous backdrop: The D.

And if you still watch it and think about how sad Detroit is, remember this. I live in a place that looks like this. And I have a view that looks like this. And I live squarely within the city limits.

So there, naysayers. It may not all be roses, but it’s not all homicides, either.

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7 Comments

Filed under DD (aka My Man), Detroit, glass half full, loft style living

7 responses to “On Detroit 1-8-7

  1. I won’t lie, I was a naysayer at first. I saw a preview a few months ago and it was basically “in one of the most dangerous and neglected cities in the country…..” and basically didn’t have good jargon at all. That was definitely what threw me off. Plus, The Wire makes Baltimore look like a third world country and hasn’t done them many favors, so I looked at it like that.

    However, I was pleasantly surprised when I saw it the other day. It is really no different than any other NYPD or CSI type of show, and if it wasn’t shot in Detroit I don’t think I would even bother watching it because it didn’t seem to be anything different or spectacular. However, I loved recognizing the scenery and references (he totally destroyed that coney with all that ketchup) so I’ll keep watching it for that. šŸ™‚

    I agree that Detroit has a unique look. I think she’s quite pretty.

  2. I completely (and respectfully) disagree with gingermandy. One of the reasons I LOVED The Wire was because they were able to find a certain beauty in the problems with Baltimore. Sure, the show was gritty and scary and could have used a dose of the nicer parts of the city to balance out the grit. But, in the grit, there was friendship and love and camaraderie and strength. Plus, what does a city a greater disservice … showing its true colors or skipping over them to paint an unreal picture?

    If people are going to travel to a city, let some higher power help them if they’re going to gather all their information on said city and judge it based off a TV show.

    I’ll try to check out Detroit 187 … and will certainly give the show and your city the benefit of the doubt.

  3. I’m planning to catch the first episode sometime this weekend, but from what I’ve heard, people are mostly giving out good reviews. I just hope the show gets picked up for a few seasons as least so they can show a good chuck of the city.

  4. I have heard of the show but did not watch it. I will have to do so now that you’re such a fan and feel it’s a pretty good representation of Detroit. I’ll add it to the DVR.

  5. ria

    i want to watch it, i just haven’t had the time!

  6. I have not seen it, but I want to.

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