Why The Rookie Should (And Likely Will) Order A Spinoff For Niecy Nash's Simone

niecy nash the rookie
(Image credit: ABC)

Spoilers ahead for Part 1 of The Rookie’s latest episode, “Simone.” 

ABC’s cop procedural The Rookie aired the first part of a backdoor pilot for a potential spinoff starring Niecy Nash, and it was definitely memorable. The pair of episodes collectively introduce viewers to Nash’s Simone Clark, the oldest trainee at the FBI Academy, who helps the feds and the LAPD navigate a terrorist attack.

Niecy Nash’s purported spinoff would give The Rookie a chance to expand. And with the parent series already guaranteed another season, it would be great to see both programs air alongside each other during the 2022-23 TV season. The alphabet network has yet to give the offshoot a series order, but there are a few reasons why the execs should (and probably will) give it a chance.

Niecy Nash’s Comedy Skills Are Welcome In Any Drama

At this point in her career, Niecy Nash has proven herself as a comedic force. Over the years, she's starred in plenty of comedies and a handful of dramas. Simone Clark gives her the perfect outlet to use the skills she's obtained from both genres. Sure, Simone as an older FBI trainee, Simone can be serious but, at times, she can also be clumsy or loud, which leads to some lighthearted moments.

Of course, the star is a veteran of Reno 9-1-1 and recently explained how her preparation for the comedy differed from her new role. Of course, The Rookie gives her the opportunity to flex her dramatic muscles even more, and it should. But the producers should continue to lean on her humorous nature as well, which would help balance out the tone of a potential show.

Simone Is Dedicated To Her Work

Just like Nathan Fillion’s John Nolan, Simone is completely devoted to her work. Because she had kids, she couldn’t join the FBI Academy years earlier, so she had to put that dream on hold. And now that they no longer live at home, she's taking her new position at the FBI very seriously.

She's also incredibly resilient when it comes to the job. While in LA working with the police, her superiors suggested that her she should get back to Quantico, though she clearly knew that her services were still needed. Thanks to her connection to one of the suspects, she was able to help out and ultimately point the task force in the right direction. You have to love this kind of persistence and commitment.

Simone’s Backstory Is Already Worth Exploring More

Even with just this one episode, we already have an idea of Simone’s backstory, and it's definitely worth expanding upon. She admitted to Nolan that she actually grew up in Los Angeles but doesn’t have the best relationship with her dad. This is due to the fact that he believes in defunding the police, while his daughter still entered a career in law enforcement. 

Her dad was also incarcerated for eight years for a crime that he didn’t commit and had to give up his dreams of playing the trumpet as a result. These few scenes give viewers so much information about Simone and her family, and I’d definitely be intrigued to learn more about the Clark family's history.

The Ratings Imply Viewers Showed Up For Niecy Nash

Of course, there are the ratings, which are enough to prove that viewers want more of Niecy Nash. According to TVLine, the episode drew in Season 4’s second-largest audience, with 3.8 million total viewers, not far behind the March 6 episode “Hit List,” which drew in 3.88 million. 

It’s worth noting that The Rookie doubles its Sunday night viewership through Live + 7 delayed viewing, so it’s quite possible that the ratings could only go up. Niecy Nash does have a solid following at this point in her career so, hopefully, ABC realizes that it has a proven star on its hands.

The Rookie is doing better than it seems in terms of the ratings, and a spinoff could be a great way to build on that success. Hopefully, the network provides a verdict sooner rather than later and, if it's positive, the new show would join the long line of crime dramas currently airing on TV. But in the meantime, you can see Part 2 of the backdoor pilot air this Sunday, May 1, at 10 p.m. EST on ABC! And check out CinemaBlend’s 2022 TV schedule to see what else you can look forward to on the small screen this year.

Megan Behnke
Freelance TV News Writer

Passionate writer. Obsessed with anything and everything entertainment, specifically movies and television. Can get easily attached to fictional characters.