This Summer, Will Major Crimes Happen in Your House?

Major Crimes poster
But can she *close*?
TNT announced last year that The Closer will give birth to a new show when Kyra Sedgwick (Brenda Leigh Johnson) leaves this summer. The new show, called Major Crimes, will star Mary McDonnell as Captain Sharon Raydor and will feature many of your old favorites from The Closer.

If Major Crimes retains the writing, artistry and wit of The Closer, then count me in.

Captain Sharon Raydor is vastly different than Brenda—after all she prefers to shoot bean bags rather than bullets, but still manages to get the bad guy. Can you imagine Brenda shooting a suspect with bean bags?

The character of Captain Raydor has evolved over the past few seasons. When Raydor first met Brenda, we saw veiled contempt for someone who thought herself beyond the rules in an organization and a woman that existed to enforce rules, but over time we have seen the captain develop a respect for Brenda that led her to nominate her for chief of LAPD. That’s a lot of respect.

In recent episodes we have seen what I think is Raydor’s wish to be more like Brenda as she has spent more and more time in the major crimes unit even participating in a car chase where her skills were more than a little bit rusty. Or maybe she just envies Brenda.

Raydor has also reached out to Brenda in friendship, something that Brenda is finding hard to trust. Watching Brenda’s relentlessness and ability has given Captain Raydor renewed vigor, and I hope we will get to watch that grow in Major Crimes.

Mary McDonnell on The Closer
Mary McDonnell moves into the spotlight.

I can safely promise you, that we will be in great hands with Mary McDonnell, who has been twice nominated for Academy Awards. She made a superior chief executive at the end of the world as President Laura Roslin in Battlestar Gallactica.

Beyond McDonnell as Raydor, there is also the excellent writing, and the wonderful possibility of delving deeper into some of the characters that comprise the rest of the department. I imagine it will be a tough shift for the department to go from a chief who will do anything to close a case, to a chief that follows the rules so closely. Raydor has been in internal affairs for so long, I imagine that she has many enemies in LAPD that we haven’t even heard about yet.

The cast of The Closer
Can anything match the chemistry?
Casting has been announced, and you can see the list if you click right here, but be warned. It’s fairly easy to determine who the leak is by noticing who is not on this list. So if you don’t want to know, don’t look. There are no other spoilers here, I promise.

Saying goodbye to Brenda Leigh Johnson will be hard on all of usCloser fans and the fictional LAPD alike, but knowing Major Crimes might be just as good in other ways might help soften the blow. And rumor has it that Kyra Sedgwick and Jon Tenney will be back on occasion for guest appearances.

Until next summer, which seems a long way off, we still have Brenda Leigh Johnson and The Closer for a few more episodes. For me, I’ve already decided to watch Major Crimes.

Need to get caught up on this season? You can watch full episodes of The Closer on your computer at the TNT website here. So shut your office door and take a big bite of that secret candy bar. And when you’re done getting caught up on this season come back to Criminal Element and tell us who and what would you like to see this summer on Major Crimes.

Deborah Lacy loves crime fiction a little too much. You can follow her on Twitter (@quippy), if you dare.


  1. Lynn Ristau

    I will be tuning in because I want to see more of Flynn and Provenza at least. There will be a different dynamic with Raydor as the lead but I think it will still be as intriguing. As for the leak, one of the missing actors from the new show has always been my suspect for the leak.

  2. Carmen Pinzon

    I’ll be watching because I’ve enjoyed the character of Captain Raydor. It will be interesting to see her struggle with the rules and the need to close cases.

  3. Heather Waters (redline_)

    I love Mary McDonnell, so I actually might watch this show even though I don’t watch The Closer.

  4. Deborah Lacy

    @Elsandra – Flynn and Provenza are favorites of mine too. The Dodger episode is the absolute best.

    @Bungluna – I agree. It will take the show in a completely different direction. I also think that some of the team may not totally be able to trust her at first. There will be some angst, which I hope keeps things fresh.

    @redline – I do love Mary McDonnell as well. I’m a big BSG fan and she made a great President. I’m looking forward to Major Crimes.

  5. aysa

    This is the best thing about Major Crimes I’ve ever read, TNT is not so generous and I’m really excited!

  6. Denise

    I’ll tune in even if it appears that one of my favorites is not joining the new show and may in fact be the leak .Sob

  7. Terrie Farley Moran

    I’m sobbing along with Denise, but I will definitely watch Major Crimes.

  8. Deborah Lacy

    This just in from TNT:

    The Closer will return Monday July 9 at 9pm.
    We only have 6 more episodes left before Captain Raynor takes over and Major Crimes starts.

  9. Saundra Peck

    I have been in LOVE with The Closer from episode #1….to know it was ending was tragic…then came Capt Raydor’s increased role and I just KNEW she was the one to carry on the great show. My daughter made me a BSG fan, so I know that McDonnell is a wonderful choice and Major Crimes will have me from it’s 1st episode as well. I cannot wait to see how Capt Raydor’s personal life will play out too. (thanks for not making the cast list a spoiler….I am saving the leak!!!) I am also glad to hear that Kyra and Jon will make appearances….he is just adorable as Agent Howard, the match of her flaws with his flaws made their love perfect!!! Looking forward to it all!!!

  10. isabella sanchez

    I will always love The Closer and will be sad that it is ending but atleast they made a spin-off. I can’t wait to see Major Crimes. I jave always been a BSG fan from the start. So i know this show will be good with Mary McDonnell as the lead. I’m definitely going to watch this show, no doubt about it. I’m also glad that one of the returning characters are Flynn and Provenza. They are going to get on Capt. Raydor’s nerves so much. Just can’t wait to see her get irritated at those two. Going to be sooooo funny!!! I have a feeling that Waiting for this show is worth it.

  11. Deborah Lacy

    @sk1336 We are kindred souls. I can’t wait until July 9th when Brenda gets back, even though it’s for the end and we might have some bumps along the way.

    @isabella sanchez – I totally agree! I triple dare the writers to come up with an episode to showcase Flynn and Provenza that tops the Dodger episode (confession – I am a Dodger fan myself, but I probably wouldn’t have ditched the dead body for sky box seats. So far I haven’t faced that choice. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that streak continues…)

  12. Majorcrimesmem

    Abso-frakkin-lutely!!!!! I can’t wait!

  13. A young Grammy

    Oh, how sad, sad, sad! A huge group of us always watch the Closer! We will so miss Brenda, Fritz, her fabulous parents!
    Please make those guest appearances!

  14. Katherine

    I cannot stand Captain Raydor, so I will not be watching.

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