The Red Line: Season 1 (2019)

Season 1
The Red Line

Critics Consensus

If not always graceful, The Red Line is never less than empathetic, effectively applying tried and true storytelling techniques in its attempts to untangle complicated cultural issues.



Critic Ratings: 18


Audience Score

User Ratings: 24
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Air date: Apr 28, 2019
Air date: Apr 28, 2019
Air date: May 5, 2019
Air date: May 5, 2019
Air date: May 12, 2019
Air date: May 12, 2019
Air date: May 19, 2019
Air date: May 19, 2019

The Red Line: Season 1 Photos

Tv Season Info


Noah Wyle
as Daniel Calder
Aliyah Royale
as Jira Calder-Brennan
Noel Fisher
as Paul Evans
Howard Charles
as Ethan Young
Vinny Chhibber
as Liam Bhatt
Elizabeth Laidlaw
as Victoria "Vic" Renna
Enuka Okuma
as Suzanne
Kristina Valada-Viars
as Elizabeth Fermi
Rammel Chan
as Matthew Lee
Corey Reynolds
as Harrison Brennan
Glynn Turman
as Nathan Gordon
Sebastian Sozzi
as Diego Carranza
Enid Graham
as Amanda Sharp
Nadji Jeter
as Rashaad
Guy Van-Swearingen
as Commander Redding
Amanda Dahl Powell
as Natalie Vaughn
Guy Van Swearingen
as Commander Redding
Ilyssa Fradin
as Local Anchor #1
Regina Taylor
as Dinorah Benson
Paul D'Addario
as White Guy
Ann Jameson
as Woman #1
Melissa Davis
as White Girl
Kurt Naebig
as O'Dwyer Kanman
Jeffrey Fine
as Bailiff
Elibur Stepney Manuel
as Older Black Woman
Rashada Dawan
as Resident #2
Anna Brockman
as Angelica Barrett
R.J. Lewis
as Young Harrison Brennan
Nina Ganet
as Pedestrian
Peter H. Moore
as Father Joe Billick
Tanya Jonsson
as Sandra Carranza
Sandra Marquez
as Principal Dougherty
Sammy A. Publes
as FOP Lawyer
Tony Peera
as Cashier
Marissa Olavarria
as Mean Student
Lawrence Grimm
as Bill Harrington
Paloma Nozicka
as Michelle Ortega
Pam Mack
as Teacher
Al'Jaleel McGhee
as Dwayne Boden
Nicholas Adam Freed
as Alt-Right Thug
Harmony Zhang
as Mean Student's Friend
Katie Klein
as Sergeant Lee Hoekstra
Laura T. Fisher
as Bev Connelly
Samuel Taylor
as Greg Holmes
Phyllis Griffin
as Moderator Green
Lionel Segee Moise
as Local Anchor #2
Wesley Daniel
as Rude Man
Haron Adoni Esho
as National News Anchor
Samuel Joseph Dyer
as Reporter #1
Jennifer Grace
as Another Reporter
High Callaly
as Cop in Back/Singing Cop #1
John Lister
as Another Cop/Singing Cop #2
Anita Chandwaney
as Reporter #2
Anand Bhatt
as Reporter #3
Dev Kennedy
as Singing Cop #3
Jim Gallanis
as Singing Cop #4
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News & Interviews for The Red Line: Season 1

Critic Reviews for The Red Line Season 1

All Critics (18) | Top Critics (10)

Red Line force-feeds more than it should. It has some messages of true value while also failing to resonate to the degree it could have and should have.

May 3, 2019 | Rating: B- | Full Review…
Top Critic

It's not subtle, but it is smart. It's openly emotional, but rarely manipulative. It, too, wears its heart on its sleeve, a quality that enables it to get the best of its occasional heavy-handed dialogue...

Apr 25, 2019 | Full Review…

Often worthy and heartfelt, "The Red Line" still can't get its arms around the real-world pain and suffering (and consequences) that it has to get its arms around.

Apr 24, 2019 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
Top Critic

The beauty of The Red Line is that even after the episodes stop rolling, our minds and hearts keep building.

May 21, 2019 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Heartfelt series explores racial bias, violence in Chicago.

May 14, 2019 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

The issue with The Red Line is that the show moves from plot to plot with the only one being interesting is the shooting that started it all.

May 3, 2019 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Though I appreciate the show seems to be using the sympathetic white cop as a Trojan horse to talk about systemic racism, it's also not a good drama. It's schlocky and ham-fisted, and to be honest, mostly dull.

Apr 30, 2019 | Full Review…

The drama ultimately arrives at the destination you knew it would right from the opening moments.

Apr 29, 2019 | Rating: C | Full Review…

The performances and shaded characters in The Red Line make up for the show's flaws.

Apr 29, 2019 | Full Review…

Amid the sometimes overheated hubbub there is Royale, who brings the temperature back to normal. Even when a scene feels too obviously constructed, she moves around in it like an organic space, a real person among people in a movie.

Apr 26, 2019 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Red Line: Season 1

  • Jun 05, 2019
    There really are two ways to look at Red Line as a series: On one hand, it seems like something CBS could have streamed over its All-Access platform in terms of overall production value and content. This depth of material (even in miniseries form) isn't usually seen on the airwaves of the major networks. In that sense, Red Line is an unqualified success. On the other hand, despite a great start/setup, the final episodes really descend into a thick, almost cloying sense of "schmaltz", for lack of a better word. Very little nuance whatsoever is applied. For the basic setup, this show begins with Harrison Brennan (Corey Reynolds), who is black, witnessing a late-night gas station burglary in Chicago. When Officer Paul Evans (Noel Fisher) shows up on the scene, he immediately identifies the innocent Brennan as a threat and fatally shoots him. As a result of this cop-on-black-man violence in which Officer Evans looks to get "off the hook", Harrison's husband Daniel (Noah Wyle), daughter Jira (Aliyah Royale), and a black female candidate for city Alderman, Tia Young (Emayatzy Corinealdi), fight for justice. Along the way, a number of familial revelations and twists-and-turns are revealed that in equal parts fracture and strengthen the bonds between all parties involved. To be honest, I was initially drawn to this series by Wyle, whose work in Falling Skies really caught my eye back when that show was still airing. He is indeed great for his role here, and he and Fisher often steal the show in the acting department. I was also impressed by the setup, or the first 3-4 episodes. The show creators (Caitlin Parrish & Erica Weiss) do try to tell both sides of the very complicated story, and especially in the early goings really succeed in this task. The way this show sets up, it looks to be a really dynamic look at either side of issues that could be ripped right from current news headlines. The problem I had with Red Line, however, is that after that great setup it really seemed to devolve into a series of outrageous dramatic herrings and an almost non-stop string of contrived revelations. While I realize that is kind of the definition of televised drama, the final four or so episodes really pushed that concept into "ridiculous" for me. Every episode—and often multiple times per episode—something big (often outrageous) would happen to reinforce the core messages. In other words, there is very little nuance to Red Line, especially as it winds to a close. Instead, its messages are continually hammered home with very little time for thought or reflection. Not helping matters either is that while the show seemed to want to tell a "both sides of the story" type narrative, objectively it does not. While it may pay lip service to Evans and his "cop brethren" side of the tale, he seems to be used as much as a pawn to set up the next social issue tackled as anything else. If the writers really wanted to explore his character in-depth I believe they could have, but again this show seemed more concerned about its messages than the treatment of certain characters. The way I look at Red Line in final summation is that if one is a progressive and passionate about social issues, this is about as feel-good of a show as it gets. It's not all "sunshine and rainbows", to be sure, but the messages are ones of overwhelmingly social justice and positivity from that point of view. However, if one is drawn to really nuanced characters and plots, this one might be a bit of a disappointment, as it becomes very clear that all the characters/events are essentially pawns in the chessboard of putting the social issues front-and-center. That is how I come to my right-down-the-middle 2.5 star rating: Red Line gave me perhaps more than enough interesting/inspirational social topics, but not nearly enough crafting/nuance of those topics to make me really engage in the material beyond a "rah rah" surface level.
  • May 21, 2019
    I haven't seen the finale yet (and won't until this weekend), but I have loved what I have seen so far. Is it preachy? Yes, but then again a lot of shows are. We, the viewers, need to examine whether or not we accept what the show is saying. For example, is the white cop racist? Some of his actions are definitely saying yes. That being said, I don't think he shot the black doctor out of racial malice. Based on what we saw in the pilot (and this may change depending on the finale), I don't think he was paying attention to what Harrison looked like. Rather, he rushed in and shot too quickly, before he had the opportunity to assess what was going on. And the same goes for many other complaints about this show. People don't seem to be willing to think critically about the show and just issue kneejerk reactions to what they hear. Is the show perfect? No. But it is also something that is entirely plausible and needs to be seen.
  • May 20, 2019
    Great program. Hope it comes back.
  • May 19, 2019
    This show is not afraid to tackle tough issues of the police problem and racism which If we are honest runs deep in ways we may not always be aware. This is a show that tackles many tough issues in a fair way. Plus the city I love, Chicago is shown with all its sides. Great acting!
  • May 19, 2019
    What's it about?
  • May 05, 2019
    This is a very earnest show. Lots of good intentions but it comes off as preachy and try hard. Characters fill predictable slots and much of the drama seems contrived to let each actor have their moment. It's a "stolen from the headlines" show that's just too predictable.
  • May 05, 2019
    The Red Line is a raw, emotional, and thought provoking tv show. Necessary television. I can't wait for the next episodes.. Very inclusive and talented cast. Love it
  • May 03, 2019
    This series is so important because it addresses some very uncomfortable subjects: gay-marriage, adoption, hate crimes and its effects on the families that suffer under this pall: even in urban areas. There are some brave people on CBS to place this in the same time-slot (after '60 Minutes') as 'God Friended Me' which may be 'feel good' but does not address these really uncomfortable issues. It's about time.

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