If Detectives Marco Ruiz and Sonya Cross of FX’s The Bridge are to catch the brutal killer who is targeting — and taunting — both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border, they will need to learn to work together, despite their cultural differences and distinct personalities.
And while an easygoing, rule-bending lawman from the Chihuahua State Police and a rigid, socially stilted member of the El Paso PD might not seem a complementary coupling, Demian Bichir, who plays Marco Ruiz, promises, eventually, a productive dynamic.
“I think this is the first time that Sonya actually can have a friend, a real friend, because Marco doesn’t care about anything else but solving the problems that they share,” the actor told TVLine during a conference call. “And although she might be ‘weird’ to Marco, he likes her. And he takes care of her the way partners should, so you will see that more and more, how this relationship goes from being awkward to being very tight.”
Turning from professional relationships to the personal, however, Marco’s home life will be revealed to be not as perfect as first glimpsed, when in Episode 3 (airing July 24), he lets slip with a bit of behavior that is as unexpected as it is dispiriting.
“One of the things that I love about Marco is that this is a tridimensional character, because he’s not black or white,” Bichir says. “He’s a good cop. He’s a good man. But he’s no angel. I believe in characters that can be tangible, that you can actually relate to, and he loves his wife Alma as much as I love my own wife. But he’s a man, and he’s not very good sometimes in making decisions.”
As much as Bichir sings Marco’s praises as a complex individual, there is one “character” on The Bridge that he wishes were a bit more accurate in its depiction.
“We’re not showing the real Juarez. We’re only showing the ‘Hollywood’ Juarez that I guess they need to contrast the countries,” the Mexico City native laments. “The irony of it is that Juarez is a very modern city where you can find pretty much anything you need, especially if you’ve got money. It’s a fantastic city that I’ve known for many years.
“Juarez is a lot more than just a difficult border town sometimes, and we still need to show that part,” Bichir continues. “Everything we’re showing right now, it’s only the bad side…. So I just hope that the rest of the world won’t take this as a fact.”