Buried in the middle of the 1300’s on my Uverse entertainment system is WEtv (“Women’s Entertainment Television”), a channel that surprisingly gets frequent airtime during post-work couch sessions, due to its recent takeover of TNT’s stranglehold over Law and Order. Marathons run 2-3 days a week, and me, I like a good marathon (long as absolutely zero running is involved).
I began seeing commercials for criminal drama The Divide in the late Spring, but don’t give it much thought. On a last-minute whim, I set up a series recording just-in-case on the show, literally minutes before its two-hour premiere begun.
Produced by AMC Studios (Turn, The Walking Dead, duh…), The Divide doesn’t rely on star-power or Stephen Bochco (no offense to Murder in the First, since I find you enjoyable, too) to weave its tale of judicial misconduct and an insofar unseen “higher-up” pulling the strings. Clarke Peters (Det. Freamon in every white person’s favorite show, The Wire) and Nia Long (“Friday”) may be the only two faces of the entire cast you can name; the rest, talented as they seem thus far, are more like people you’ll see and have to jump over to IMDB to realize just where you know them from.
WEtv may have spared some of the cost that comes from a big-name cast, but don’t let that fool you– The Divide may be every bit as intriguing and well-crafted a story as anything you’ll see on any other cable network this Summer.
It may look rather predicable from the onset– a man on death row, a criminal law activist group with the sole job of saving men on death row –but, what we end up with instead with drama oozing with racial tension, questionable attorneys, police misconduct, and, likely, political corruption (trust me, we’ll get there in a few episodes). It’s interesting, and for a network’s first foray into scripted television, it’s earned a spot on my DVR for the Summer.
Viewers, a warning, however: you’ll definitely want to watch this show via your DVR, remote in hand. While I can attest to the quality that WEtv has brought forth with The Divide, much of their other programing involves
bullshit reality shows featuring the Braxton family or LA hairstylists or marriage bootcamps featuring reality stars from other crappy networks’ shows. And, since it is their network and all, they’ll show you a ton of commercials for this shit while viewing The Divide, unless you’re fast-forwarding like a pro.
The Divide airs Wednesday nights at 8pm central on WEtv.