‘Chicago P.D.’ Gets Slammed by Critics — and Hank Voight Is the Main Target

Police procedural dramas have long been a staple on American television. Shows like Blue Bloods, Law & Order, and Chicago P.D. are considered to be some of the best of the genre and attract legions of new fans each season.

Still, there’s a movement sweeping the nation in the wake of George Floyd’s murder, one that could put an end to the way many cop shows are written and filmed. Fans are speaking out regarding the “copaganda” movement, and, in particular, they have a lot to say about one of Chicago P.D.’s main characters. 

‘Chicago P.D.’ is a beloved show

Jason Beghe as Hank Voight
Jason Beghe as Hank Voight | Matt Dinerstein/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank

As one of the shows in the beloved Chicago franchise, Chicago P.D. has been one of the biggest shows on television for over six years. The show focuses on the police officers of the Intelligence Unit of the 21st District of the Chicago Police Department, highlighting their work struggles as well as their personal lives.

A spinoff of Chicago Fire, Chicago P.D. frequently features crossovers with other shows in the franchise, and many storylines over the past few years have involved characters from several shows.  

In February 2020, Chicago P.D. was renewed through the eighth, ninth, and tenth season, much to fans’ delight. However, there could be a number of changes coming to the show, especially with the “copaganda” movement demanding change for the way that many cop characters and police procedural dramas are written and handled. 

What is the ‘copaganda’ movement?

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After George Floyd’s death in early June, people everywhere took to the streets to protest the way that he was killed, and to call for change in the criminal justice system.

Protesters and critics alike have pointed to police procedural dramas as being part of the problem — that is, the way that many TV shows portray police officers as being relentlessly good and heroic could be contributing to the injustices perpetrated against people of color.

The term “copaganda” has been circulating in reference to these police-positive shows. While many of the actors and showrunners involved in police procedural dramas have been speaking out, says the Chicago Sun Times, lending their support to the Black Lives Matter movement, many critics think that this is not enough, and that, for any real change to occur, the TV shows themselves will have to undergo a drastic change in format.

Chicago P.D. has come under fire for being one of the worst offenders — however, as many viewers have pointed out, one of the worst cop characters on television is the featured player in the show. 

Viewers have slammed Hank Voight on ‘Chicago P.D.’

Hank Voight is one of the main characters in Chicago P.D. and quite possibly one of the most brutal characters in the franchise. He is sergeant of the Chicago Police Department’s Intelligence Unit, and although his unit respects him and follows his lead, he has been known to use dirty cop tactics and isn’t afraid of hurting people in order to get what he wants.

Over the course of the series run, Voight has covered up for other characters on many occasions and maintains associations with criminals and drug dealers. Voight has even been shown to have committed murder, all in the name of catching the “bad guys.”

Viewers have long taken issue with Voight’s action and in the wake of the “copaganda” stories have taken to Twitter to call the character out. Some fans have called Voight the “most crooked cop ever,” leading to speculation that the character could possibly be written out of the show, or even killed off in dramatic fashion.

Others have pointed to Chicago P.D.’s “entitlement” issues as a real underlying problem with not just the television industry, but with the criminal justice system in general.

While it would be a major task for showrunners to remove Voight from the lineup of Chicago P.D., it seems as though some change is certainly in order — even if that is just changing up how other characters react to Voight’s brutality. 

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