It’s back to square one for Rookie Blue‘s Traci in this Thursday’s episode (ABC, 10 pm/9c). The still-green officer is making the transition to detective-in-training, a professional step-up that nevertheless makes her feel like a newbie all over again.
“It’s a whole new reincarnation of rookie,” Enuka Okuma says of her character’s detective rotation. “It’s her first day on a job, on the promotion. All those butterflies are happening to Traci again.” The actress adds she had fun “making mistakes all over again.”
And some big mistakes definitely will happen. After finally finding her footing as a cop, Traci now must face “a whole bunch of new challenges,” including the loss of her support system: the fellow rookies who joined the force when she did. In her new, more solitary position, “she doesn’t have her crew with her,” explains Okuma.
But the level-headed cop’s friends and coworkers are never too far away, and though their careers are taking different paths, “at the heart of the show, those five rookies have always got each other’s back,” says the actress. “Traci discovers that within the episode, even though she thinks she’s out there all alone.”
Then there’s the struggle that comes with working more closely with her boyfriend, Detective Jerry Barber (played by Noam Jenkins). “Let’s just say it’s not a smooth transition,” Okuma hints with a laugh. Perhaps she should consult with her pal Andy (Missy Peregrym), who’s seeing training officer Sam (Ben Bass) and has some experience balancing romance in the office? “Exactly!” she exclaims. “There’s lots of love problems still at the 15th Precinct… It can never be easy, can it?”
So will Traci stick with her new professional path even though she gets herself into quite “a pickle” this week? “That remains to be seen,” says Okuma. But she’s probably hoping for it, considering Traci’s new job has one very substantial perk. “One thing in real life that the other actors are a little jealous about is that I didn’t have to wear that uniform,” she shares with a laugh.Follow @VladaGelman