A new study further confirms that most crime TV shows are good PR for cops

Color of Change, a nonprofit founded in the wake of Hurricane Katrina and dedicated to social justice advocacy, and the USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center just completed a new study about representation and messaging in police and crime TV shows. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the results backup the revelations from the Washington Post's 2016 investigative series, "Dragnets, Dirty Harrys, and Dying Hard: 100 years of the police in pop culture" — that police department PR machines have long collaborated with Hollywood executive powers-that-be to utilize TV to influence public perceptions of law enforcement.

The report is based a data crunch of 353 episodes from 26 crime-related scripted television shows that aired in the 2017-2018 season. They analyzed the race and gender breakdowns of the writers, showrunners, and consultants involved in the shows, as well as the on-screen representation of criminal justice, persons of interest, and victims. Overall, the study identified 5,400 variable data points across the shows, focusing on such questions:

Do crime procedurals and other crime-focused series produced in the U.S. accurately depict the reality of the criminal justice system, accurately depict racial disparities (e.g., racially biased treatment by authorities, the disproportionate targeting of people of color communities, disproportionate punishment or other outcomes based on race) and depict reforms and other solutions for correcting racial disparities in the criminal justice system? If present, do series portray any specific actions or attitudes of criminal justice professionals as directly resulting in those racial disparities? Do they portray any of the routine practices of the criminal justice system as resulting in racial disparities?
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'Hawaii Five-0' stars quit over racial inequity

Unable to secure equal pay, Hawaii Five-O stars Daniel Dae Kim and Grace Park have quit the show.

Members of Hollywood’s small but vocal Asian-American community are speaking out in support of former Hawaii Five-0 stars Daniel Dae Kim and Grace Park, who have left the series after failed contract negotiations with CBS and CBS Television Studios.

“Unfortunately, the racial hierarchy established in the original 1968-1980 series remained intact in the 2010 reboot: Two white stars on top, two Asian/Pacific Islander stars on bottom,” Guy Aoki, founding president of Media Action Network for Asian Americans, wrote in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter.

News of Kim's and Park’s departures broke Friday before the Independence Day holiday, with sources confirming to THR that Kim and Park had requested and been denied pay equity alongside fellow original castmembers Alex O’Loughlin and Scott Caan. In a lengthy Facebook post Wednesday, Kim noted that he based his decision to leave on the inability to reach an agreement on a new contract, and added, “The path to equality is rarely easy.” Sources say that Kim and Park asked to be compensated on par with leads O’Loughlin and Caan, who also receive a cut of the series’ back-end profit.

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