The View Through the Looking Glass Ceiling
The film opens with a coroner examining a body. She finds something odd in his mouth. Meanwhile, Cagney is signing divorce papers. Christine is up for some kind of major promotion. At the distract attorney's office Chris and Mary Beth find out about what could possibly be a police scandal. It's also very politically charged.
Mary Beth finds out her father is going to need to live with her since he's being dumped by the woman he was living with. They have got gotten along in the past but it seems now that her father has dementia. Mary Beth is suspected by the doctor of abusing her father. Mary Beth doesn't like having to 'spy' on police officers in order to investigate the possible scandal.
The police woman that both Mary Beth and Cagney think might be involved in the scandal. She was definitely withholding evidence. Meanwhile the guy Chris likes says he can't sleep with her since he says he has a treatable STD.
Then the main problem arises when Mary Beth knows who has leaked some sensitive files and wants to go after the guy but, if she does, Christine could have major political problems if Mary Beth goes after the guy. Christine admits to Mary Beth that she had done some drinking during the summer but now has stopped.
Christine thought she could play the political game but she couldn't manage to win. It almost costs her her friendship with Mary Beth.
The View Through The Glass Ceiling
Aired October 25, 1995
A now-divorced Chris is up for appointment to the Law Enforcement Oversight Board, and very gungho about her career. Mary Beth must deal with her aging father (Richard Bradford, reprising his occasional role in the series). The ladies are working on a case involving corrupt police and forged immigrant documents. This is very convenient for Chris, as it allows her to collect dirt about one of her rivals, and use it effectively. Well, not as effectively as she thinks. Their boss is now played by Chip Zien instead of David Paymer. Still no grandchildren.
As the veteran policewomen investigate a case of suspected police corruption, Cagney also plays departmental politics to land a prestigious post,while Lacey deals with the return of her estranged father.
In this feature-length film Cagney and Lacey investigate the death of a young man found with uniform fibres in his mouth. When they arrive to question a suspect they find him murdered with both hands severed at the wrist. On top of all this, Mary-Beth's father has senile dementia.
Cagney & Lacey did not draw high enough ratings in those later seasons to stay on the air as a series. Did they take themselves too seriously? Were the shows running low on killings and thrilling car chases? Whatever the reason, it is good to have them back in the third two-hour movie for CBS. Sharon Gless (as Chris Cagney) and Tyne Daly (as Mary Beth Lacey), who won a collective six Emmys for their work in the series, carry a few more wrinkles and pounds these days, but they are also older, wiser, and richer in their emotional strengths. The View Through the Glass Ceiling, with a top-quality script by Michele Gallery and excellent work from director John Patterson, comes together as a beautifully acted, Emmy-caliber episode.
The once N.Y.P.D. blue belles are now working for the D.A.'s office, although they carry their emotional baggage with them. Chris is still off the booze, except for one recent relapse, Mary Beth, perhaps one of the most righteous characters in television history, is still tied in knots by her absentee father. The crime plot here is somewhat secondary after finding a dead body, Cagney and Lacey trace it back to a counterfeit driver's license ring.
The emotional plot begins with the arrival of Mary Beth's father, Martin Zibiski (Richard Bradford). He is terribly sick and does not recognize his daughter in his dazed condition, leaving her with the agonizing decision of whether she should move her father into her home and care for him despite his past wrongs. Meanwhile, Chris, driven by her ambition for a great promotion, leaks some files to the press that damn a female cop. Mary Beth finds out and cannot abide Chris's actions. Their friendship, which really drives the series, is ripped apart, at least until the end of the movie. The View Through the Glass Ceiling is welcome if only to see two powerhouse actresses continue stretching their characters.
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