The Shield: Season 5 (2006)

Season 5
The Shield

Critics Consensus

The Shield's suspenseful fifth season introduces a worthy foe for Vic Mackey in the form of internal affairs investigator Jon Kavanaugh, played with marvelously agitated energy by Forest Whitaker.



Critic Ratings: 12


Audience Score

User Ratings: 38

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Air date: Jan 10, 2006

A race war breaks out between blacks and Mexicans. Plus, a tax-increase ballot initiative fails, meaning cutbacks. One victim (in four months) is Vic, who also has the new IAD investigator (Forest Whitaker) out to get him. "When he jumps dirty, we'll know," investigator Kavanaugh tells Aceveda. The reason: a plant inside the Strike Team.

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Air date: Jan 17, 2006

While the Strike Team goes after a thug named Doomsday, who is suspected of a triple murder, Kavanaugh is squeezing Lem to implicate Vic in the Terry Crowley killing. Meanwhile, Dutch and Claudette suspect a minister with a wandering eye of attempting to kill the alcoholic husband of a parishioner he has his eye on; and Julien has serious doubts about whether the rookie Tina will make the grade.

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Air date: Jan 24, 2006

Vic finally meets Kavanaugh, but first the Strike Team begins to develop a strategy to counter the IAD probe. Meanwhile, Tina goes undercover to nab a sex-trafficking ring; and friction between Claudette and Dutch deepens when she sides with defense lawyer Becca Doyle (Laura Harring) in a high-school shooting case the two detectives had worked on.

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Air date: Jan 31, 2006

Vic asks lawyer Becca Doyle to represent him -- and the rest of the Strike Team -- in the Kavanaugh investigation. "We're family," he tells her. Vic also comes to doubt the loyalty of Emolia (Onahoua Rodriguez) and questions her about it. Meanwhile, Corinne confronts Kavanaugh about who he is and what he's doing; Tina makes yet another rookie mistake; and Dutch grows increasingly concerned about Claudette's health as the two probe a grisly case involving a dead pregnant woman.

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Air date: Feb 7, 2006

Illegal prescription drugs are killing people in Farmington, and the Strike Team probes the case in a way that draws in Kavanaugh, who's following the goings-on via a bug in the Team's clubhouse. Kavanaugh also learns that Vic knows about Lem's wire. Meanwhile, Becca Doyle fills Vic in on the background of the IAD probe. Dutch and Claudette investigate the case of a young illegal alien who jumped out of a moving car.

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Air date: Feb 14, 2006

Kavanaugh sets up operations at the Barn---in Billings' office. On the street, the Strike Team is preoccupied with gang violence involving a white drug dealer. Meanwhile, a bloody shirt reopens a cold case for Claudette and Dutch, and Tina learns something about Julien that he certainly doesn't want her to know. Michael Chiklis directed.

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Air date: Feb 21, 2006

While an ever weakening Claudette continues to interrogate murder suspect Kleavon Gardner (Ray Campbell), the Strike Team joins forces with a citywide task-force chief to probe the murder of a meth dealer's girlfriend and her 2-year-old daughter. Meanwhile, Vic tells Becca about the $65,000 he gave Corinne; Kavanaugh questions Gardocki; and Aceveda offers Lem a deal. Fox football analyst Jimmy Johnson has a cameo as a prisoner.

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Air date: Feb 28, 2006

Vic enlists Emolia -- with Kavanaugh's grudging assent -- to infiltrate a Salvadoran gang that has grenades in its arsenal. Meanwhile, Kavanaugh tries to enlist the imprisoned Antwon Mitchell (Anthony Anderson) to rat out Vic. And Dutch offers information about Vic to Kavanaugh, who also has a criminal matter involving his ex-wife (Gina Torres) to worry about. Dutch is involved with that, too.

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Air date: Mar 7, 2006

Lem's in jail, and the Strike Team can't bail him out because Kavanaugh has had their assets (and Corinne's) frozen. Kavanaugh also engineers a confrontation between Vic and Terry Crowley's brother. Elsewhere, Aceveda confronts Kavanaugh; Claudette, who's back at work, investigates the murder of a man whose body was found in a Dumpster; and Tina makes yet another mistake.

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Air date: Mar 14, 2006

Lem's out on bail and tells the Team he's taking a deal from the DA, while Vic, who's worried about Lem's safety in prison, makes a deal with Antwon. Of course, it's a deal with the Devil. Vic also has an encounter with Sadie Kavanaugh. Meanwhile, the avenging rattrap finds another victim; and Claudette gives the assistant chief (Nigel Gibbs) an earful when he confines her to desk duty.

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The Shield: Season 5 Photos

Tv Season Info

A corrupt and brutal LA detective runs an elite squad by his own rules in a neighbourhood ravaged by drugs and gangs.

Cast & Crew

Michael Jace
Officer Julien Lowe
Catherine Dent
Officer Danielle "Danny" Sofer
Jay Karnes
Det. Holland " Dutch" Wagenbach
Paula Garces
Tina Hanlon
Michael Chiklis
Det. Vic Mackey
Forest Whitaker
Lt. Jon Kavanaugh
CCH Pounder
Det. Claudette Wyms
David Marciano
Steve Billings
Walton Goggins
Det. Shane Vendrell
Benito Martinez
Capt. David Aceveda
David Rees Snell
Ronnie Gardocki
Cathy Cahlin Ryan
Corrine Mackey
Kenny Johnson
Curtis Lemansky
Onahoua Rodriguez
Emolia Melendez
Gina Torres
Sadie Kavanaugh
Nigel Gibbs
Assistant Chief Roy Phillips
Laurence Mason
Halpern White
Paul Ben-Victor
Detective Paul Reyes
Joe Stevens
Leon Frankel
Michele Hicks
Mara Sewell Vendrell
Shawn Ryan
Executive Producer
Scott Brazil
Executive Producer
Show all Cast & Crew

Critic Reviews for The Shield Season 5

All Critics (12) | Top Critics (4)

The network's longest-running series seems to have mastered the art of casting worthy opponents for the complex protagonist.

Oct 25, 2019 | Full Review…

When you watch [the season 5 finale] "Postpartum" as the emotional climax of a five-year story like a normal person, you see how much is contained in that final act.

Aug 14, 2018 | Full Review…

With writing and acting this outstanding, it wouldn't be wrong to hope that Vic slithers out of trouble again to give us more of The Shield's gripping, morally complex drama.

Mar 8, 2018 | Full Review…

Television's most compelling cop serial has figured out a way to make up for the loss of Glenn Close and Anthony Anderson.

Mar 8, 2018 | Rating: A | Full Review…

Thanks in part to an Emmy Award-worthy performance by season guest star Forest Whitaker, not to mention the death of a fan favorite, the fifth season of "The Shield" is one of the best yet.

Oct 28, 2019 | Rating: 4.5/5 | Full Review…

In its fifth season, the show is truly better then ever. The noose has been tightening on Vic Mackey and his Strike Team for awhile now, and the tragic but inevitable results are now coming forth in a big way.

Jan 8, 2019 | Rating: 9/10 | Full Review…

The end of the Strike Team has always been a likely outcome for this series inspired in part by the Ramparts scandal. The trick is, it makes you feel so uneasy. How did these bullies and punks come to be the heroes?

Nov 19, 2018 | Full Review…

In addition to the overarching story of Vic being investigated by the department, episodes are as tense and exciting as ever.

Nov 16, 2018 | Full Review…

The fifth season of [The Shield] showcased some of the most thoughtful and dramatic acting and storytelling of the year, all the while keeping us on our toes anticipating what would come next.

Aug 15, 2018 | Rating: 9/10 | Full Review…

The fifth season gets off to a good start-gnarly, cranky and muscular-for those ethically loosey-goosey policemen of the Barn.

Aug 14, 2018 | Full Review…

Sign me up for whatever comes next!

Apr 16, 2018 | Full Review…

If this isn't the last season for The Shield, I fear that the Wile E. Coyote-Road Runner routine that pits Aceveda (Benito Martinez) and Kava-naugh against Mackey will start to grow stale.

Mar 8, 2018 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Shield: Season 5

  • Jan 23, 2021
    The best Crooked cop, cop series period, ever on television
  • Jan 19, 2021
    Forest Whitaker fits just right in

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