Denis Leary's latest show about public safety, Rescue Me is an alcohol fueled, sex-crazed, smoke eating series with no reguard for who it offends next.
Born of Leary's well known habit of paying tribute to America's firefighters, Rescue Me follow the men of the FDNY 62 truck as they navigate through relationships, family, their post-9/11 experiences, and workplace troubles. Oh yeah, and there's some firefighting in there too.
The leads are not heroic, they're human. They fall to temptation, they do wrong, and they know it. They lie, they cheat, they do things that most people would revulse at. That is where the series has one of it's strengths. It isn't a giant "I Love You" that most people hear Leary give firefighters, it's a "These people have a tough ass job, and a lot have a tough ass life, show them some Goddamned respect!" show. The characters grow, change, and suffer like people do, and the show is all the better for it.
The supporting cast has gone through a lot of shifts, like the change from Jerry Rielly to Sidney Fienburg, the ghastly ghosts Tommy has to suffer through, and the many women the firefighters either choose to or have to be with. Plus, where else can you have Michael J. Fox as a jerkass in a wheelchair?
To say the series is a dysfunction junction is an understatement. It's a dysfunction continent. The main characters are
almost complete boozehounds or womanizers with no concept of when to quit. The families do care for each other, but are
completely unable to show it in any other way but anger and lots of insults. Tommy's family alone is insane enough, with his youngest daughter disowning her family, his oldest hating her father, his son dead, his uncle having shot him, his father a polygamist and his sister almost as big a drunk as he is.
The other firefighters were no better, but thanks to some character growth, each one is starting to find their place in life, and are learning what their own faults are and how to solve them.
The biggest icing on the cake has to be the classic Leary-style comedy, along with the likes of Adam Ferrera throwing their own comedic weight around.
The series is still on the FX network, so grab a cool drink and watch some of the hot action and drama in Rescue Me.