Convictions are more enemies of truth than lies…
Here the ways of men divide.
If you wish to strive for happiness then believe.
If you wish to be a disciple of truth, then inquire.
These are quotes from the philosopher Freidrich Nietzsche, and they are the first things we see as the new series on the We-tv Network called The Divide, begins. The next thing we see is a woman, who we will learn is called Christine Rosa (she’s played by Marin Ireland) is reading from the Nietzsche book, Human, All Too Human.
The series begins with a two-hour (the pilot and the 2nd episode) screening. The Opening hour is called The Way Men Divide, and the second hour is called No Such Thing as Justice. Christine Rosa is not yet a lawyer but she works for an outfit called The Innoncence Initiative. They take on cases when they believe that justice has not been served, and when an innocent man has been wrongly convicted. In Christine’s words – It is easier to get into Harvard than it is to get us to take a case. Have a look at Christine:
On the opposite side is Philadelphia District Attorney Adam Paige. He’ s played by Damon Gupton. You may recall Gupton from The Newsroom, in the episode in the Season One episode called Bullies. Gupton as Sutton Hall went toe-to-toe with TV News Anchor Will McAvoy played Jeff Daniels. Sutton Hall stood his ground and gave as good as he got. It was a memorable moment in the series, and now Gupton is one of the leads in this series.
The case is about a 12-year-old murder of almost all of a Philadelphia family. There was one witness – an 8-year-old child. Adam Paige has built his career around this one case.
What the Innocence Initiative is after is an re-examination of the DNA. The killer is on Death Row in a Pennsylvania prison. Adam Paige is still the well-known DA. Christina Rosa and her boss Clark Rylance who is played by Paul Schneider, who also had a key role on The Newsroom as writer Brian Brenner, in two Episodes called Blackout 1 – Tragedy Porn and Blackout 2 – Mock Debate, want to take a look at the case (Rylance has to be convinced) to see if a new light can be shined on the case. They believe questions need to be asked.
And, the clock is ticking. Jankowski, the killer, is facing execution in less than three weeks. The second defendant, Terry Kucik, is serving a life sentence. DA Adam Paige says that if the case had not resulted in a conviction, the city would have been burned down. Did he cut corners? Christina Rosa is both tough, determined and brash, but is her conviction in seeking the truth about this case clouded by the fact that her own father is a convicted murderer himself? Yet he is innocent,because he was with Christina when the police said he was elsewhere killing someone.
The other key factors – the killers are white men, the murdered family was black. The DA, Adam Paige is black, as is is wife Billie Paige (played by Nia Long). Christina and Clark are white.
There’s your set up. In the words of Executive Producers Richard LaGravenese and Tony Goldwyn there’s more to this that just the case. They want us to think of what happens without justice, or if justice is not properly served. They say that every one is guilty of something, and that every case has shades of grey. They say there’s no such thing as absolute truth. In short this is not about solving a case as much it is about finding justice. When you add in the powerful performances of the actors, and the absolutely brilliant writing, this is easily a must see series.
I also believe that both Christine and Adam are not a likable characters. She’s arrogant and she’s pushy, and as I said before she determined. She is a law student, she works at the Innocence Initiative, and she puts in hours tending bar. She is often tired, cranky, and sometimes, if she looks as if she’s been up all night, it is probably so because she has been up all night. She wears no fancy clothes, and make-up isn’t something she worries about.
Adam is tough too. He doesn’t back down from anyone or anybody. But he’s also ambitious to the point of getting in people’s faces rather than just reaching out with a handshake. He not only looks like a successful man, wearing crisp shirts, and good suits, he actually is, by any way you’d want to count it, a success. And while he is in public service, his wife Billie is even more successful and she’s a corporate attorney. Watch for Clarke Peters, as Paige’s father. He’s the chief of police.
There’s an intriguing look at the show with comments by the leads, as well as LaGravenese and Goldwyn. The video is called The Making of The Divide. I’m fairly certain that this video will give you a good look at what the show is about, as well as what the people look like. More than that, if you’ve not seen the show, you might go right to Video on Demand to see the first two episodes after watching the video below. Please check it out.