With a twist on the usual police procedural dramas comes Stumptown, the nickname for the city of Portland where the show is set.
Created by Greg Rucka, Justin Greenwood and Matthew Southworth, Stumptown is based on their graphic novel series and is adapted for television by Jason Richman.
What Is Stumptown About?
Dex Parios (Cobie Smulders) is a Marine veteran with a lot of problems. Suffering from PTSD, she struggles to maintain a steady job, is in debt, has a gambling problem, drinks too much and has a complicated love life largely because she is still grieving her ex who died in Iraq.
After spending her last few dollars at the local casino, the owner, Sue Lynn, asks her to find her granddaughter Nina. In return, Sue Lynn will clear her gambling debt.
With limited options, Dex accepts the job, and while trying to track Nina down, she meets a police detective, Miles Hoffman.
Ultimately, Dex finds and returns Nina and discovers she may have a knack for being a Private Investigator. And so begins her new career which helps her to support her brother and dig her way out of debt.
But nothing is ever that straightforward, and there of plenty of mishaps along the way as Dex tries to overcome her inexperience in the field.
She is helped by her best friend Grey McConnell (Jake Johnson, Safety Not Guaranteed), detective Miles Hoffman and even Lieutenant Cosgrove (Camryn Manheim) who is Detective Hoffman's supervisor.
So can Dex Parios finally get her life together and become a great PI or is she destined to keep making terrible decisions which always land her in trouble?
Stumptown Official Trailer
Is Stumptown Worth Watching?
Stumptown is definitely grittier than a lot of the usual cop shows out there. Dex Parios is a mess, and Cobie Smulders plays her brilliantly.
The sharp-witted veteran is highly capable but consistently makes such poor choices that occasionally your patience with the character runs thin.
No matter how hard the people around her try, she just can't seem to avoid trouble. And that's fine when it's about her PI cases, but I sometimes wished that in her personal life she would just do the right thing for once.
That said, it's good to have a complicated female lead and one that's not afraid to get her hands dirty.
Stumptown definitely packs a punch, moves at a terrific pace and no matter how badly Dex Parios you can't help but root for her.
You can watch Stumptown, outside of the US, on Disney+.
Stumptown Season 2
With 18 episodes in the first season, Stumptown received quite good reviews and was a hit with viewers.
Originally an ABC production, the first season was released in September 2019.
It was renewed for a second season which should have aired in 2020. And then covid happened.
With too many production delays, Stumptown was not ready for the Autumn schedule, and so the network cancelled it.
With its elaborate stunts and extensive location shoots the additional restrictions and need for an increased budget also played into the decision to cancel it.
Despite trying to shop the show to other channels, so far there have been no takers and as such Stumptown remains cancelled.
Cobie Smulders as Dex Parios, a veteran who works as a private investigator to support her brother.
Jake Johnson as Grey McConnell, owner of the Bad Alibi bar, and Dex's best friend.
Tantoo Cardinal as Sue Lynn Blackbird who is the owner of a tribal casino and mother of Dex's deceased boyfriend.
Cole Sibus as Ansel Parios, Dex's brother who has Down syndrome.
Adrian Martinez as Tookie, a food truck owner and an informant for Dex.
Camryn Manheim as Lieutenant Cosgrove, Hoffman's supervisor.
Michael Ealy as Detective Miles Hoffman, Dex's contact at the Police Bureau.