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Memphis Beat

Memphis BeatNetwork: TNT
Episodes: 20 (hour)
Seasons: Two

TV show dates: June 22, 2010 – August 16, 2011
Series status: Cancelled

Performers include: Jason Lee, Alfre Woodard, Abraham Benrubi, Celia Weston, DJ Qualls, Leonard Earl Howze, Robyn Lively, and Sam Hennings.

past TV show

TV show description:
A detective series that revolves around a Memphis detective who moonlights as an Elvis impersonator. Just as music is integral to the city of Memphis, it’s integral to this show as well.

Detective Dwight Hendricks (Jason Lee) is the son of a cop who was killed in the line of duty. This has left him very devoted to both his mother and his city. He also has a deep love of music and moonlights as an Elvis impersonator. He sees himself as “the keeper of Memphis,” always very protective of his hometown. He’s laid-back and easygoing as a person and as a detective, and often uses his intuition on the job. He’s still good friends with his ex-wife, Alex, despite only being married to her for eight weeks.

Dwight’s boss is the recently transferred Lt. Tanya Rice (Alfre Woodard). She still has that suburban sensibility and is learning that things are a little different in the big city. She doesn’t feel so much like a boss as she does a mother. Having raised five children, she sees the police squad as an extension of her family. That maternal instinct can come in handy when dealing with perps.

Davey Sutton (DJ Qualls) completely idolizes Dwight and wants to be his protégé, but Dwight doesn’t exactly see it the same way. He tries so hard to get Dwight to notice him, that he often comes off as not being very intelligent, even though this isn’t the case. If Dwight would open up his eyes a little, he’d see that Davey has nearly as much insight into Memphis and its people. Although Davey would like to be Dwight’s partner, Charlie “Whitehead” White (Sam Hennings) has the job. He’s an old-school detective who has a way with dogs. He’s also a little eccentric and comes with high blood pressure issues.

Reginald Greenback (Leonard Earl Howze) is another detective. His wife would like to get him on a diet, and off the Southern cooking. He has two teenage daughters who are constantly into his wallet, causing him to ponder getting a second job.

Sgt. JC Lightfoot (Abraham Benrubi) wears a braided pontail that goes back to his Native American heritage, as he’s 1/16th Chickasaw. Because of that, he feels its his duty to dole out tribal wisdom to the others in the squad. At home, though, he has a volatile relationship with his wife.

Dwight’s mom, Paula Ann Hendricks (Celia Weston), sells cosmetics door-to-door and dotes on her son as much as he dotes on her. She makes it seem to him that she’s dependent on him ever since her husband died, but she’s really more independent than that. She starts dating the next door neighbor without Dwight’s knowledge.

Series Finale

Episode 20 — The Feud
A family feud reaches a fever pitch, resulting in the shooting of a girl. Meanwhile, Dwight’s peers discover he has a new girlfriend. Dwight tries to separate his love life from his professional life, but that proves difficult.
First aired: August 16, 2011.

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{ 71 comments… read them below or add one }

rusty February 2, 2012 at 5:00 am

memphis beat was a great show sorry to see it go

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Danielle January 23, 2012 at 5:30 pm

I think another network should pick it up. It was a great show.

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sondra s January 19, 2012 at 11:44 am

that’s is brieng back not bad

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sondra s January 19, 2012 at 11:41 am

I love that show menphis beat I think it should come back. tnt is getting like nbc, abc, that they cancelled the good show and leave the show that are no good. breing menphis beat back. and who every want the show bad say so

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Anonymous January 15, 2012 at 10:49 am

This was a GREAT show! Some of your viewers enjoy REAL reality. This was one of the better shows because the people were real and they actually had cloths on to cover their entire bodies. I am soooo tired of seeing half naked people on TV and its called “high fashion”. I DON’T THINK SO what ever happen to REAL CLASS. Most of the shows on TV now are TRASH. Also to the actors credit they are so good it was like watching family now thats REAL TV. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE BRING THIS BACK.

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Lou Crabtree January 13, 2012 at 7:53 am

Really upset Memphis Beat has been cancelled. Best show ever!!

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Gwen January 12, 2012 at 8:32 pm

What is wrong with the people that have the power to cancel a really good show? Memphis Beat was the kind of different police show that was enjoyable. I don’t know anyone that is planning to watch “Dallas”. That show died a long time ago and should remain there. Are the old stars that desperate?

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Judy Salgado January 10, 2012 at 11:13 pm

You had class actors to work with so if it failed it has to be because of something else. Alfre Woodard is one of the classist actresses around and has a range of talent that can’t be beat. Jason Lee did a great job as did his fellow actors. I got my friends hooked on this so don’t know where you got your numbers. Don’t know why you would give up on this show with the talented actors and writers without trying another time slot or day. You guys don’t know a good thing when you have it. Boohoo

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denise January 1, 2012 at 7:05 pm

I agree with sandra anderson, networks don’t give a show a chance, I really liked this one, and I don’t like reality shows, I want fiction, a show is suppose to entertain, and this show was entertaining, thanks alot for cancelling another great show.

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Sandra Anderson December 28, 2011 at 8:36 pm

Hated to hear another great show was cancelled. Happens way to often. Everytime we love a good and interesting show, the network does something stupid like cancel it. Why do they think everyone wants to see more ridiculous (and definitely staged) “reality” shows?? I don’t know who they’re asking, but it certainly isn’t the normal viewers! All the good shows like Memphis Heat get cancelled, driving viewers away from TV…guess I’ll read more books or rent more movies and prior seasons of favorite shows from Netflix!

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Nita Taefi January 11, 2012 at 7:20 am

Sandra. You said the very thing I wanted to post. This wasn’t supposed to be a typical series, it was funny, interesting, the characters were strong enough to keep things worth watching, and, different than any other cop show. Reality shows are not reality. They’re staged, the participants are amateurish and vapid. The squeeky, cartoon voiced women with their saline bags boosted up and out are awful. The men usually want to fight, kill animals, or work the lower echelon of making money. NO THANKS. I’ll continue to read and if I want to watch a movie, the larger grocery stores have movies in the red box machines. Other than that, Netflix for $8.00/mo is far better than what’s now on TV.

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JEN December 14, 2011 at 2:34 pm

truly disappointed in the cancellation. This was the best detective show ever!

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shannon August 31, 2011 at 3:39 pm

I really like this show. Not high brow, but fun….and the music is great.

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sue hight March 20, 2011 at 1:15 pm

i am so glad this has been picked up . love the show and have been waiting patiently for it’s return. Go Memphis Beat

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Jo March 18, 2011 at 11:17 am

Does anyone know if TNT is going to show reruns of the first season as I have missed it

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lisa wuesthoff March 9, 2011 at 3:45 pm

I would love to buy a CD of the songs sung on the show Memphis Beat. I love the way Jason Lee sings the songs. They have so much emotion in them. Better than Elvis.

I love I Want To Be Free

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Jeanne March 31, 2011 at 9:54 am

Actually it is Mark Arnell that is doing vocals for Lee’s character

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