It's that time again. Time for FX's re-imagining of the Danish Broen (or Bron in Sweden) to return. The Bridge's first season, which stars the German born fashion icon Diane Kruger and Mexican actor Demián Bichir, first debuted this time last year. Now, it's time for more unexplained cartel drug money, more young girls from Juárez disappearing, and a heaping helping of your two favorite police detectives. But first, let's refresh ourselves on what went down in Season 1.
The 13-episode premiere season follows about five main characters, and twenty or so recurring cast members, which makes keeping track of the show's events nearly impossible. Throw in the fact that half of the show is in Spanish and you can get really confused at some points if you aren't paying attention. Thank God for subtitles.
You guys are lucky, because I've got a photographic memory, and I did all the work of retaining this information so you didn't have to.
Here's where we left off with Sonya Cross, Marco Ruiz, and everyone else:
If you didn't know Cross had Asperger's Syndome, a large percentage of her behavior would be unexplainable, brash, bold, and rude. But sometimes her basic lack of social skills allows her to be a better cop in ways others can't match. In Season 1 we saw a ton of growth from Kruger's character. She went from closed off and arrogantly self-assured, to someone who now understands peoples feelings, namely Marco Ruiz's feelings, and she uses that knowledge to her advantage. We've learned a bit about Cross' past, including the murder of her sister, which gave us a slight glimpse into her psyche. Now that she and Ruiz have solved the Tate case, she has set her sights on the missing and dead girls of Juárez. This will most likely cause problems for her, Hank, and Ruiz, whose loyalty is caught somewhere in the middle of the Bridge of the Americas.
Where to start? Ruiz is coming into Season 2 just having lost his son, who was murdered by David Tate. His wife, Alma, has left him, along with their two daughters. Marco has to deal with the weight of what his infidelity has done to his family and others. So we'll see Marco dealing with a lot of anger towards David Tate, and now, with Sonya's assistance, taking over Tate's old FBI stomping grounds: the case of the Dead and Missing Women of Juárez. Last season was primarily Sonya's turf, and with this case, we may see Marco taking the reins on this one. Marco is on a tight leash when it comes to the Juárez police, so it'll be interesting to see how he navigates this case.
From loving wife, to widow in mourning, to partnering with members of a Mexican drug cartel, Charlotte Millwright is definitely the rising phoenix of this series. She's sort of like the Heisenberg of this show in a way. She's just joined forces with Fausto (the Gus Fring to her Heisenberg) who has proven himself to be one of the most dangerous characters from Juárez. She's got the trusty ranch hand Cesar at her side, but also her shifty old boyfriend from high school Ray is still lurking around. This woman is definitely going to get herself into some trouble with her underground tunnel to Mexico. Now that Graciela is dead, and that storyline is sorted, I have a feeling Fausto won't be so easy to shake when Charlotte inevitably gets tired of this situation.
Ah, Steven, the social worker with one of the weirdest voices I've ever heard in my life. Despite initial police interest, Linder was not the killer. What we have here is a deeply solitary man who genuinely likes helping people, in his own way. His methods are unorthodox but generally I believe his heart is in the right place. He's now intertwined with Ruiz and Cross' investigation of Eva Guerra and her rape, so he definitely isn't going anywhere, though he may not play a large role in this coming season. I fear he may get himself into trouble, which he seems to do quite a bit.
Hank is Sonya's sort-of Dad, caretaker, guardian angel, boss... guy. Hank's a true asset to the El Paso PD. He sees the validity in most things Sonya has to say, despite them sounding crazy to the large majority of people. He has the skills and the experience to navigate cases and Sonya's behavior that is so necessary and unrepresented by any other character. He has mentioned retiring a few times, which would not only devastate Sonya, but would push her character to grow up and take responsibility for her actions in a way she has never had to, considering Hank always picks up the pieces when she breaks things. I think we will see Hank retire this season, but he will remain a cog in the machine of the El Paso PD, especially with this Dead Women of Juárez case.
You probably remember him as Shaggy and Scooby Doo's voice in the more recent live-action reboots — what a freakin' star-studded cast this is — but Matthew Lillard's Frye is your typical hot-shot reporter with a drinking and substance abuse problem who is in the midst of a fall from grace. His character flaw would definitely be his hubris. Daniel's near-death experience, in addition to the guilt he feels over assisting the accidental murder of Tate's family, will transform Frye this season. Hopefully we will see him clean, sober, and back to doing some genuine journalism. Adriana Mendez, a fellow reporter and something of his sidekick, will be a large focal point of this season, considering her sister just went missing.
IN A NUTSHELL...
This show has got something for everyone. Demián Bichir is the eye candy, and boy is he tasty. Diane Kruger is a cross between the comedic relief and also the "how the hell did she figure that out" style tactics of Dr. House. The show is in pretty much equal parts English and Spanish, which allows you to brush up on all the phrases you don't remember from high school. The show tackles topics like immigration, illegal substances, abuse, and race relations in a way that is similar to (well kinda) but not as boring as watching endless hours of CNN. And Uncle Rico from Napoleon Dynamite is in it, which is probably the most random thing I didn't realize until my boyfriend pointed it out.
The Bridge has now completely deviated from the Swedish and Danish source material, so it's anyones guess as to where it will go next. I, for one, am super excited to get back on the case with Cross and Ruiz. Is anyone else kind of, sort of, hoping they hook up?
Images: FX (7); Paramount Pictures (Screengrab)