Kelsey Grammer set to play Chicago mayor in 'Boss'

Kelsey-GrammerImage Credit: Charles Norfleet/PR PhotosKelsey Grammer is returning to TV as the mayor of Chicago in the upcoming Starz series Boss. Gus Van Sant is set to direct the pilot, and Grammer will be among the executive producers, according to Variety. It’s Grammer’s first strictly dramatic TV role, and his first cable series.

But Boss, in which Grammer’s mayor reportedly has a degenerative disease and echoes King Lear, isn’t the only Windy City-set political show kicking around. Fox’s cops-and-politics drama, newly named The Chicago Code, debuts February 7, and oh yeah, The Good Wife is also a Chicago-set, politically-informed show. Talk about the city that works.

Except one thing kind of confuses me, and I say this as a former Chicagoan and someone who wrote about city politics a lot: How do you write a political show set in Chicago that fictionalizes away Mayor Daley? The city’s political culture and climate are so deeply linked to the Daley family — one of whom has been mayor for roughly 42 of the last 55 years. It’s like writing a show about a New York City commuters, except there’s no subway.

And yet I remain hugely optimistic. The pilot for The Chicago Code was promising, and The Good Wife is one of my favorite shows on right now. Starz is currently under the control of Chris Albrecht, the former HBO exec who helped shape shows like Oz, The Sopranos, Sex and the City, Six Feet Under, Band of Brothers, Deadwood, and The Wire. So … high hopes.

What about you, PopWatchers? Does Boss sound enticing? Or are you burnt out on Chicago shows?

Comments (9 total) Add your comment
  • Em

    I’m breaking up with Kelsey Grammar.

  • jmcg

    can anyone buy him as a Chicago mayor?

  • bb

    “Boss” was a Mike Royko (Pulizer Prize winning Chicago journalist) book about Mayor Daley the first. It’s pretty famous in Chicago –kinda weird that that’s the title of the series if it isn’t about Daley.

  • Greg

    I’m looking forward to seeing Kelsey try drama for a change!

  • DanOregon

    No way in hell a guy like Kelsey Grammar gets elected in Chicago. He’s about 10 gallons short of swarthiness.

  • Bob

    I will absolutely give it a look. Grammar is a very good actor and deserves this. Hope the cast and writing is just as good. Maybe David Hyde Pierce can make a visit.

  • Sarah

    He’s probably desperate to get further away from Camille

  • Samantha

    Kelsey is a great actor. Looking forward to seeing him in a new show- and taking on a role completely different than what we are used to seeing him as.

  • Stacy

    I will definitely be checking it out. Kelsey Grammer is one of the best actors I’ve seen and I know he can be both funny and dramatic. I think he’s great no matter what.

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