Glam factor: Tough-girl chic -- a brown leather jacket, aviator shades and a gun belt
Personal life: Random hook-ups
Why perps should be afraid of her: "Dani's seen it all," Shahi says. "They can't put anything past her she hasn't herself done or seen. She's forgotten more tricks than they know. She has given up almost all of her vices, kicking a perp's [butt] just isn't one of them."
Kyra Sedgwick / Dep. Chief Brenda Johnson
Show: "The Closer" (Mondays on TNT)
Back story: She's a no-nonsense, CIA-trained interrogator who is deputy chief of the Los Angeles Police Department's Priority Homicide Squad. She arrived there from the Atlanta Police Department, and she uses her Southern belle wiles to get suspects to let down their guard.
Time in the trenches: Launching Season 4 this summer
Secret weapon: She sees clues others don't
Closet skeleton: She's a sugar addict. She usually indulges in private but in extremely stressful situations, she sometimes takes a hit of candy
Glam factor: Just think trenches, baby, trenches
Personal life: She had an affair with her current boss, Will Pope (J.K. Simmons) when both were married and working together in Washington, D.C. Currently lives with FBI hottie Fritz Howard (Jon Tenney).
Why perps should be afraid of her: "Because I'm nice. Because you don't know when I'm telling you the truth. Because I am a good listener. Because I am intuitive about people. And because I remember everything," Sedgwick says.
Awards: A Golden Globe for best actress in a drama series, two Screen Actors Guild award nominations and two Emmy nominations in the last two years.
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Trailblazing female cops
Call them the first wave of TV's female crime fighters. These pioneers were busy catching bad guys when the current crop of law women was in diapers -- if they were even on the planet. As early as 1957, Beverly Garland was going undercover as the NYPD's Casey Jones in "Decoy," a series that ran for a couple of years. By the time '70s feminism arrived, TV audiences were hearing policewomen roar. Here are some of Garland's better-known successors from the past half-century:
"Police Woman" (1974-1978)
Angie Dickinson was sexy gunslinger Sgt. Suzanne "Pepper" Anderson. The influential role earned her a Golden Globe, triggered the genre of voluptuous-but-formidable crime stoppers (can you say "Charlie's Angels"?) and led to a spurt in applications to be real-live policewomen.
"Cagney & Lacey" (1982-1988)
Sharon Gless and Tyne Daly starred in this female cop-buddy series that earned each of them multiple Emmys. (Trivia lovers: Loretta Swit and Meg Foster preceded Gless as Det. Christine Cagney in the show's early days.)
"Murder, She Wrote" (1984-1996)
Angela Lansbury played mystery writer-turned-sleuth Jessica Fletcher in one of the longest-running detective dramas on television -- plenty of time to win four Golden Globes.
"Prime Suspect" (1991 to 2006 sporadically)
Helen Mirren was a relative latecomer as the no-nonsense Det. Chief Inspector Jane Tennison, but she still had to endure hostility from her male-dominated department. She earned three BAFTAs and two Emmys for her troubles.
-- Irene Lacher