New Year’s Resolutions: SWAT needs to do something to stand out more

SWAT’s third season returns tomorrow. With that in mind, it’s time to look at the New Year’s Resolution the show need s to make.

Let me say that I enjoy watching SWAT, but it’s one of those shows that doesn’t really stand out from the TV crime drama genre. With the ratings struggling, it’s time for the show to pick things up to stand out.

As the show returns with its midseason premiere on Jan. 15, it’s the perfect time to assess what needs to happen. Here’s a look at the New Year’s Resolution SWAT needs to make.

The show: SWAT

The resolution: Take a risk with the storylines

Why it needs to be made: While I certainly enjoy watching the series, there are very few episodes that stand out as original and unique. The show has a habit of falling back on many of the TV crime drama cliches, especially in the case of the week.

This isn’t going to do the show any favors when it comes to getting the ratings. We’ve already seen that Wednesday nights are terrible for the show. The ratings already put the show on the bubble in Season 2, and now CBS has put it on one of the hardest nights at the hardest times of the week. SWAT needs to give people a reason to tune in.

One of my all-time favorite episodes of the series actually involves the high school shooting. We got an episode that told two timelines, showing us where Lila got her name from, what happened within the school, and how Chris got her first interaction with the team. It was an important episode for character development, as well as an important one for the current situation in schools across the country.

While this episode was certainly a hard one to watch, it was beautifully done. It was raw and honest, but also helped the show step outside the box. Okay, school shooting episodes are now standard for these types of shows, but the way they are done and the way the story is told will help episodes stand out.

The school shooting episode has been the best-rated episode on IMDb. In fact, it’s the only episode to put the rating into the nines, even to this day. Viewers appreciated the storytelling and the risk the writers took.

“Kingdom” – The Harrelsons engage in a tense family reunion when Hondo’s older sister, Winnie (April Parker Jones), begrudgingly arrives in Los Angeles to see their sick father for the first time in decades. Also, the SWAT team searches for an abducted Middle Eastern human rights activist, Luca’s food truck business hits a snag, and Street worries that dating Captain Hick’s daughter, Molly (Laura James), will negatively impact his career, on S.W.A.T., Wednesday, Nov. 6 (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured (L-R): Amy Farrington as Lieutenant Detective Piper Lynch and Shemar Moore as Daniel “Hondo” Harrelson. Photo: Best Possible Screengrab/CBS 2019 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

And while we can’t have school shooting episodes each week, this is a sign of what viewers want. We need more episodes that will tell raw storylines, bring the emotion to the tale and put our guys and gals of SWAT on the line.

It may not be surprising that storylines that have involved the families of our SWAT team have been some of the ones that stand out. “Immunity” is one of the most memorable Season 3 episodes, and I love that the show has followed it up with Lila struggling with nightmares from the event. It gives the series something that feels real.

SWAT needs to do something if it wants to succeed. Avoid too many cliches and standard case of the week episodes and take a risk.

Next: New Year's Resolutions: The full schedule

What would you like to see from SWAT in the rest of Season 3? What New Year’s Resolution do you think it needs to make? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

SWAT Season 3 returns with all-new episodes on Jan. 15 at 10/9c on CBS.

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