It’s safe to say that a lot has changed in Erin Reagan’s life over the course of Blue Bloods. A key element of this shift is her daughter, Nicki Reagan-Boyle (Sami Gayle). As the show begins, Nicki is a young teenager growing up literally in front of the audience, and her dynamic with her mother changes accordingly.
For Bridget Moynahan, Blue Bloods’ bittersweet portrayal of Erin dealing with Nicki’s growth is just one way the show touches on niche yet realistic forms of grief. “As much as I miss Sami and those relationships, it’s very realistic because you have that loss, which is a very understandable life situation and an odd reality,” the actress told Glamour. “There is sadness [when kids go off to college or to live on their own] this is not often discussed. We can touch it.”
It is true that “Blue Bloods” creates many difficulties for its character, and these personal conflicts run through a spectrum of experiences. For Erin, it’s confronting her daughter’s growth. Danny (Donnie Wahlberg) follows the death of his wife, Linda, who was killed off screen after her actress Amy Carlson left Blue Bloods. For Jamie (Will Estes), it’s the difficult realization that his job can’t save everyone. According to star Tom Selleck, it’s those conflicts that have audiences keeping their eyes on it after more than a decade of seasons. “They want the Reagans to be happy,” the actor told TV Insider. “That’s the key.”