Rizzoli & Isles is being marketed as a crime drama that focuses on relationships as much as it does its procedural elements. And one of the most interesting relationships on the show is not the obvious gal pal element but the very real brother-sister team of Angie Harmon and Jordan Bridges. They are competitive with each other in their makeshift driveway basketball court just as much as they are in the halls of the precinct. Bridges is the younger brother and still a uniform somewhat living in his big detective sister’s shadow.
“It’s been really fun—I don’t want to speak for Angie, but I think for her it’s been fun working with me because she doesn’t have siblings, and so this was a real new scene for her. I, however, have lots of them!” Bridges laughed on a call with Examiner late last week. “But she is just really great to work with, has a tremendous amount of energy, and is really fun. It’s just been a ball.”
Bridges, who has more of an arc in tonight’s episode featuring the possible reemergence of the Boston Strangler, shared that as the season goes on, the audience will see more and more of how the characters’ personal lives bleed into their professional ones.
“Actually my whole arc on the show is how we work through that because, you know, I think while [Jane] is somewhat supportive of me giving it a go, she also doesn’t want me to cut any corners; she wants me to earn everything legitimately; and she doesn’t want me to grease the wheels…So there’s a little bit of friction there, but also I think that we’re figuring out how to work together as brother and sister on the job. We definitely get into that; you see that; you see how Jane sort of struggles a little bit with how she feels about me being on the job. I think sometimes she would rather me not be there. And my thing is that I basically try to earn her respect.”
And having his family around him all the time (as Bridges mentioned, so far all of his scenes have been with Harmon and Lorraine Bracco, who plays his mom) will surely put a damper on his love life as well. Though Bridges couldn’t spoil who the show has brought on to play a potential romantic partner, he did say that his “dating life gets front and center and kind of gets caught up in stuff we’re investigating.”
But Bridges doesn’t mind because working with the powerhouses that play his family members has been great. “What’s amazing is that a lot of the times when you’re talking about chemistry—especially when we have to play families– it’s sort of a roll of the dice; you don’t really know how it’s going to work out. But this all along has happened so organically and so naturally, at least on my end. I haven’t really had to work to try to create a bond; it just sort of appeared fully formed. It’s been great; I’m really lucky to have the people play my family that I have,” Bridges gushed.
When Examiner was on the phone with Bridges, he was actually on his way to set to shoot the eighth episode of the season, one in which all of his scenes would be opposite Chaz Palminteri, who plays the elder Rizzoli. Needless to say he was looking forward to that, but he admitted he was also excited to delve more deeply into the crime stories.
“There’s an episode coming up…that takes place during the Boston marathon, and I had a chance to get very physical,” Bridges added some detail to what Harmon and Alexander had previously teased. “I’m basically on a bike, you know, as a bike cop that day. And going on patrol and just making sure everything’s going according to plan but of course whenever Rizzoli’s involved someone winds up dead! And so it’s cool because I’m kind of the guy on the ground in the situation.”
In order to prepare for such scenes, Bridges, too, visited Boston and spent some time with real Boston cops. “I did the ride-along,” he shared. “It was very important to me that we’re representing them and that I wanted to represent them accurately and do them right basically. I wanted to make sure that this is something that they wouldn’t cringe every time it came on and that we were really kind of honoring their service.”
Rizzoli & Isles airs every Monday at 10 p.m. on TNT.