When Jennifer Lopez read the first script for Season 2 of Shades of Blue, she "was like 'OK! That's what we're doing! We're going there! We're burying the body!'" the actress said at the Television Critics Association winter previews Wednesday.
Lopez, who plays the Brooklyn cop-gone-bad Harlee Santos, famously snapped her baby daddy Miguel's (Antonio Jamarillo) neck at the end of Season 1 — just as the convicted criminal was about to rape her. Of course, Harlee did quite a bit of dirt throughout the inaugural season, including set up her mentor/boss Woz (Ray Liotta). But with Harlee disposing of a body in the first episode, Lopez warned that that's just the jumping off point for another wild season.
"I call this 'A storm is coming' this season," she said. "There's this sub-story about Hurricane Sandy and it really does feel like they get caught in a hurricane they can't get out of." Casualties mount, making for a slippery slope and Harlee wants to be better for her daughter, who she's sent away but as Lopez said, "It just doesn't stop."
Of course, Shades of Blue is just one of many things on the multi-hyphenate's plate. Even with American Idol, which she was doing around the same time as Shades' first season, finished, she's maintained the staggering roster of projects she's known for — a residency in Vegas, a new dance show World of Dance and preparation for Bye Bye Birdie, NBC's next live musical, which will air at the end of 2017. "It was a learning experience, learning to juggle all the things that I do," she said with a chuckle. How's she do it? By doing one thing at a time — putting her full attention to whatever she's doing in the moment, even if that sometimes means doing some vocal work between takes on Shades. "I'm able to compartmentalize," she said.
As for Woz, his (secret) male lover Donnie (Michael Esper) is dead, and first looks tease him in a relationship with another woman (who's not his wife) Julia Ayres (Anna Gunn). Producers played down his bisexuality this season, Liotta said, but don't expect him to be the dinner-and-a-movie type of romance partner; he hinted that their relationship is, as he put it, "S&M-y." "Woz is tri-sexual," Liotta said. "He'll try anything."
Shades of Blue premieres Sunday, March 5 at 10/9c on NBC.