Image Credit: Charles Norfleet/PR PhotosKelsey Grammer is returning to TV as the mayor of Chicago in the upcoming Starz series Boss. Gus Van Sant is set to direct the pilot, and Grammer will be among the executive producers, according to Variety. It’s Grammer’s first strictly dramatic TV role, and his first cable series.
But Boss, in which Grammer’s mayor reportedly has a degenerative disease and echoes King Lear, isn’t the only Windy City-set political show kicking around. Fox’s cops-and-politics drama, newly named The Chicago Code, debuts February 7, and oh yeah, The Good Wife is also a Chicago-set, politically-informed show. Talk about the city that works.
Except one thing kind of confuses me, and I say this as a former Chicagoan and someone who wrote about city politics a lot: How do you write a political show set in Chicago that fictionalizes away Mayor Daley? The city’s political culture and climate are so deeply linked to the Daley family — one of whom has been mayor for roughly 42 of the last 55 years. It’s like writing a show about a New York City commuters, except there’s no subway.
And yet I remain hugely optimistic. The pilot for The Chicago Code was promising, and The Good Wife is one of my favorite shows on right now. Starz is currently under the control of Chris Albrecht, the former HBO exec who helped shape shows like Oz, The Sopranos, Sex and the City, Six Feet Under, Band of Brothers, Deadwood, and The Wire. So … high hopes.
What about you, PopWatchers? Does Boss sound enticing? Or are you burnt out on Chicago shows?