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Cold Case is a police procedural that takes place in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It centers on a group of detectives who work cold case jobs, some from as long as 50-years ago. Detective Lilly Rush works the cold cases along with partners, Scotty Valence, Nick Vera, Will Jefferies, and Kat Miller. They all work up under Lieutenant John Stillman.

The series began with Lily working a current job where three people were killed in a restaurant in Fishtown. She is pulled off of that case and assigned to the cold case team where she makes a name for herself quickly. The show usually does a single case per episode focusing on one murder and talking to suspects through a series of flashbacks that preceded the crime.

The cases are usually reopened when someone comes forward with new evidence on a crime that was either never solved or it seems that the wrong person were convicted. Most of the cases involve murder, although many involved missing persons whose bodies were found when it was thought they had just left town.

Through the flashbacks Cold Case dealt with a lot of history and history's problems such as racism, abortion, and police brutality. Scattered throughout the series we get to see the detectives personal lives unfold in bits and pieces showing that they are indeed human and that they do something besides work.

Cases vary in severity, from premeditated murder to accidental death and the cold case squad always gets their man. Every detective on the squad knows how to stretch the truth to earn the trust of the suspects they are interrogating. The show won many awards for acting and costumes that were used for period dress.

CBS
8 Seasons, 157 Episodes - Canceled
September 28, 2003
Drama
7.6/10
Cold Case
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Cold Case Full Episode Guide

  • Valens partners with Rush to locate her sister, who was abducted from her drug-littered motel room, and Jeffries tries to bring justice and closure to a long-suffering mother whose daughter's murder case has remained unsolved for 17 years.

  • After determining the serial killer's identity - and some of his likely future targets - the team and the FBI work together to apprehend him while trying to locate and protect the people he's preparing to kill

  • When ballistics tie a recent murder case of Rush's to a serial killer who was seemingly inactive for 27 years, a tough FBI agent with ties to Stillman shows up to enlist the team's aid in finding the killer who has eluded her for 30 years.

  • At the same time that Det. Nick Vera goes missing, the team investigates the 2006 arson case.

  • The team reopens the case of a dock worker who was moonlighting as an indy-circuit wrestler until he was shot dead in 1986, and Valens secretly looks into a lead on the man who mugged and raped his mother.

  • At a colleague's wedding, Det. Jeffries convinces the rest team to re-open the 2008 death of the bride's previous fiance.

  • When new evidence of potential foul play emerges, the team re-opens the 1971 case of a teenage circus aerialist who fell to her death while performing a dangerous new act.

  • The team investigates 1983 murder of a graffiti artist who died from a fatal dose of paint.

  • The team re-opens the 1974 case of a murdered private investigator.

  • The team re-investigates the 2005 murder of a Green Beret recruiter who was suspected of being a jewelry thief when his former subordinate presents compelling evidence for his innocence.

  • The team investigates the 1980 case of the murder of an ice hockey player, who was killed on his team's Philly ice rink the same night the U.S. hockey team had beaten the Soviet Union in the Olympic games in Lake Placid.

  • The team re-opens the 1999 case of a high school debate champion whose death was originally ruled as a suicide.

  • The team re-investigates Lt. Stillman's cold case from 1983, the death of a Chinese-American teen whose girlfriend had been killed by Chinese gang members only three months earlier.

  • The team explores the 1991 case of a 14-year-old girl who died after being sent to a new foster family and was poised to be an upcoming rap music star.

  • The team re-opens the 1986 death of a jockey when his remains are found buried with horses.

  • The team re-opens the 1944 case of a female pilot who was part of a civilian program to aid the Air Force during World War II.

  • The death of a musician in 1970 is investigated, and the musician was trying to keep his involvement with a Philadelphia Soul scene a secret from his father. Meanwhile, Lilly talks with her step-brother Finn, who is a teenager.

  • The team re-investigates the 2004 death of a teen-aged boy who was wrongly sent to a a juvenile detention center.

  • The 1995 murder of an unidentified runaway is reopened when his brother presents proof of his identity.

  • The 1966 case of woman believed lost at sea due to suicide is reopened when her remains are discovered. Meanwhile the trial of the man who attempted to kill Detective Rush begins.

  • As the team continues to search for the suspect in the killing of a female cadet, Rush must relive her own difficult past.

  • The team investigates the 2005 murder of a female cadet at a local military school. They soon uncover that she was abused by several male cadets and school administrators.

  • The team investigates the 1963 murder of a pool hustler after the long-disappeared murder weapon is found during the renovation of a pool hall.

  • The team re-opens the 1999 murder of a Cuban baseball star who fled to the U.S. after being fired from his team.

  • The team re-investigates the 1958 case of a newlywed real estate developer when new evidence suggests his body might have been moved after he was killed.

  • The team suspect a 2004 arson that killed a psychiatrist may have been caused by her former patient.

  • The team has to cope with their own emotions as they search for the shooter responsible for Jeffries' shooting.

  • The team re-investigates the 2008 murder of a father and the case of his missing teenaged son, both of whom were in the witness protection program waiting to testify against a mob boss.

  • When human remains are found in a duck pond, the team reopens the 1967 murder of a brush salesman.

  • The team re-investigates the 1988 murder of a young TV reporter. Previously unseen news footage suggests she was on the verge of breaking a huge story about the unethical practices of a plastics company.

  • The team re-investigates the 2007 murder of a mechanic who won $8 million in the lottery.

  • Rush and the team investigate the 1960 case of a murdered stewardess and discover many hostile suspects who resented her trying to organize a stewardess union.

  • The team reopens a 2005 murder case involving an African-American politician who worked to reduce crime in the neighborhood he grew up in.

  • The team re-investigates the 1953 death of a murdered pin-up girl when an old photograph provides important new evidence.

  • The team re-opens the 1989 murder of a young Russian opera star who defected to United States. She and her family sought asylum at the police station where Nick Vera was stationed when he joined the force.

  • The team re-opens the case of a 12-year-old boy who died in 1969 when the retired detective who originally worked the case receives a new clue -- a toy rocket bearing the victim's name.

  • When a body is discovered in the trunk of a car, the team re-opens the 1981 case of a missing single mother who used to work at a car dealership.

  • The team re-opens the 1951 case of a marine who went missing and never reported for duty after his shore leave.

  • The team re-opens the 1978 case of a teenage roller skater who was found dead in a ravine.

  • Rush and the team investigate the 1964 murder case of a young white woman who, under the guise of selling Tupperware, secretly traveled in a mixed group to Mississippi during Freedom Summer to bring supplies and help with the Freedom schools.

  • Rush and the team look into the death of an inner-city school teacher, originally thought to be a carjacking gone wrong, when a former student finds her car keys in an old desk.

  • The 1973 death of a football player is reopened and allegations of steroid use arise.

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