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Review: WE tv’s ‘The Divide’

Premiere Date: Wednesday, July 16, at 9 p.m. (ET)
Rating: Four out of Five stars

WE tv takes a solid stab at the scripted series genre with its new drama series The Divide.

The eight-part series stars Marin Ireland as Christine Rosa, a tireless and driven law student working for the Innocence Initiative, an outfit which looks to help those they feel have been wrongfully convicted of crimes. Ireland takes interest in the case of a white, convicted killer Jared Bankowski (Chris Bauer), who is set to be executed for the deaths of a black, upper middle class family, much to the chagrin of her boss Clark Rylance (Paul Schneider), who doesn’t want any part of the racially and politically-charged case.

Her investigation, however, does open old wounds and threatens the standing of prosecutor Adam Page (Damon Gupton), who built his career on convicting Bankowski but now feels that outside parties are trying to take him down by attempting to re-open the case.

The pilot episode creates more questions than it answers about the case and creates the setting for a very interesting storyline which touches on race, gender and class issues with regard to the justice system.

The Divide serves as a quality introduction into the scripted arena for the network. If the series can effectively develop its complicated and intriguing storyline as well as fully explore the complexities of the main characters, it should be able to retain WE tv’s core female viewership well beyond the pilot episode.