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With Blue Bloods so celebrated for its characterizations and sense of family, it might seem impossible to think some fans don’t love all the main characters. While Frank Reagan continues to be tagged as the most respectful and ethical character on TV, his son (Danny Reagan) hasn’t been so lucky.
As we dip back into the Reddit pond, we’ve been finding interesting theories and responses there to TV and movies. One recent Reddit user said he started binge-watching Blue Bloods starting with the second season after his wife had been a long-time fan.
One of his criticisms was the character arc of Danny (played by Donnie Wahlberg) and how unlikable he was in the early days. Has he become more likable recently, or was the conflict intentional all along?
Was the character really unlikable, or just played that way by Wahlberg?
Let it be known the Wahlberg brothers aren’t known for playing overly genteel people. Donnie Wahlberg has always portrayed people with more abrasive personalities, probably because he was once considered the bad boy of 1980s and ’90s boy band New Kids on the Block.
It was inevitable to have him play someone close to himself to bring legitimacy to the role. He’s done it well, though some fans have found it annoying to have so many likeable characters on the show and have Danny be so obnoxious.
In case you’ve forgotten, he was able to get away with various things that broke the rules of being an NYPD officer. The above fan on Reddit even noted how Danny was able to get away with so many transgressions without any sense of punishment. You could even say there was a form of favoritism with his dad not demoting his son.
Then there are other cases where Danny treated his siblings and co-workers like dirt. Again, he was forgiven every time, which was surely done on purpose by the writers to get a rise out of viewers.
The show arguably needed a rough-edged character to create tension
We agree with the Reddit fan about Danny Reagan, though we’d also have to tell him that adding Danny was an astute writing technique. Imagine what the show would be like without the tension of Danny disrupting things at times?
His entire arc was done to create friction within the Reagan household. As peaceful as those dinner table scenes are, it wouldn’t be quite the same without Danny sometimes starting arguments and getting on the nerves of his sister and younger brother.
The good news is there was a deliberate push to make Danny mature over the years. A question posed by the above Reddit user asked if Danny ever matures since the viewer said he couldn’t stand watching the character as he was in the early seasons. Anyone who watches the show regularly knows Danny has essentially “grown up” in the last decade to a point where he’s at least far less annoying.
From a writing standpoint, though, this might make the show too safe.
Let’s also celebrate Danny Reagan’s good qualities
Outside of Danny’s short temper is also a very good guy. He’s extremely devoted to his family, which is what Blue Bloods is really all about. Some of the abhorrent behavior he’s exhibited toward criminals is sometimes way over the top, but he’s been this way only if those involved threaten his own family.
Plus, even though he’s now divorced, he’s also good to his kids and makes sure they have a good life. If there are any moral and ethical qualities passed on through family lines, he’s at least inherited some of this through his father, Frank.
We’ll see how Danny’s temper stays tempered in the upcoming season. To add more drama, expect him to go back to his old ways eventually to spruce up the family dynamics.
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