Fox's Deputy Premiere: Grade It!

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Deputy‘s Bill Hollister is a California lawman who loves horses, hates hypocritical higher-ups and wants nothing more than to protect the good people of Los Angeles County. But when Bill suddenly finds himself named sheriff, thanks to an arcane rule in the county charter, he’d better strap himself to his saddle: The adjustment from boots-on-the-ground sergeant to big boss is a rough one, indeed.

At the start of Fox’s new drama, Bill (played by Stephen Dorff, True Detective), a member of the Sheriff’s Mounted Detail, stands before a review board, getting dressed down for giving a neighborhood of illegal immigrants advance warning about an Immigrations and Customs Enforcement raid. As a result, the country lost millions in federal grants,and Undersheriff Jerry London (Mark Moses, Desperate Housewives) is real mad about that. An unrepentant Bill says he’s happy to hunt gangsters and human traffickers, but he’s got no interest in deporting families. After all, “We’re all immigrants.” He adds that the sheriff can come and get him if he likes, then Bill walks out of the proceedings.

Deputy Premiere Recap season 1 Episode 1 FoxNot long after, he answers a radio call that pulls him into a car chase with gang members who’ve stolen an armored truck. Bill manages to send their vehicle flying off an overpass, then chases them down; one gets away. Bill and his deputies — Cade (Brian Van Hoult, Cougar Town) and Rachel (Siena Goines, Jericho) — are surprised to realize that three rival gangs appear to be working together on the job. But all of that gets pushed to the side when Jerry and some county officials show up: Sheriff Bradford has died of a heart attack. The Los Angeles County Charter states that if a sheriff dies in office, the longest serving member of the mounted posse serves in his stead until an election can be held. And guess who that posse member is? A Bible is proffered. An oath is taken. And just like that, BIll is the new sheriff of Los Angeles County.

The new job comes with a driver, Deputy Brianna Bishop (Bex Taylor-Klaus, Arrow), who walks Bill through his first day at headquarters and gives him some intel that helps him thwart another joint ICE/sheriff’s department raid. Bill also swears in a new class of deputies that includes Joseph (Shane Paul McGhie, Greenleaf), the son of Bill’s deceased former partner. Meanwhile, the armored-car job turns out to be a bunch of gangsters trying to get revenge on a rich guy who’s been skimming off the money he’s been laundering for them. And that leads the gang members to kidnap the guy’s kid. There’s a raid — thanks to the lay of the land, Bill, Brianna and Cade go in on horseback — and the deputies get the bad guys and return the girl to her family. Meanwhile, during a related riot at the prison where Joseph is stationed, the young man is hurt but manages to get some pivotal intel related to the case. And along the way, Rachel gets shot, but she survives.

At the hospital, Bill waits to get his minor injury stitched up by his wife Paula (Yara Martinez, Jane the Virgin), who’s the chief trauma surgeon. Elsewhere, Cade and his wife Teresa (Natalia Cigliuti, All My Children), whom we’d seen earlier trying to get pregnant via artificial insemination, welcome the children of one of the dead gangsters into their home as foster children.

Not long into his run as the big boss, Brianna reminds Bill that there are 110 days to go until the election that could oust him from his spot. “Well, buckle up,” he replies. “We’re just getting started.”

Now it’s your turn: Grade Deputy‘s premiere via the poll below, then hit the comments with your thoughts on the new series!