‘Blue Bloods’: Who Bridget Moynahan Considers the ‘Engine’ of the Show

by John Jamison

Back in 2011, the hit CBS police drama “Blue Bloods” was taking television by storm. With an average of 13 million viewers per episode, the show was a clear success from the beginning. And while it’s easy for an audience to assume Tom Selleck’s appeal is the main reason, Erin Reagan actress Bridget Moynahan had a different answer in mind.

Diehard “Blue Bloods” fans may know the story. When the show was still in casting, Bridget Moynahan initially turned the role down. But after some pleading from Donnie Wahlberg and the involvement of Frank Reagon actor Tom Selleck, Moynahan agreed to take on the role.

And it was those two actors that she credited as the main reason for the “Blue Bloods” success. In a 2011 interview with The Philadelphia Inquirer, the Erin Reagan actress talked about the show’s appeal.

“Tom is the face of the show, but Donnie is the engine that keeps everything going,” Moynahan said.

And if the 10 years since that interview happened are any indication, Bridget Moynahan wasn’t wrong. But she also deserves to take some credit herself. Gearing up for their 12th season, the original cast of the Reagan family on “Blue Bloods” is still very much intact. And Donnie may very well be the engine, but it’s undoubtedly a group effort.

Even though Donnie Wahlberg had done plenty of acting before he landed the role on the hit CBS show, the Danny Reagan character is easily his most recognizable.

Donnie Wahlberg is Happy Being the ‘Blue Bloods’ ‘Engine’ Instead of the ‘Face’

As Bridget Moynahan said, Tom Selleck is the face of “Blue Bloods.” There is no denying that. The Frank Reagan actor is one of the most iconic television stars of all time. As a result, much of the fame and recognition falls on him.

Donnie Wahlberg already has some practice in that regard. His brother Mark is one of the biggest A-list stars in Hollywood, and he couldn’t be happier for him. By the same token, he couldn’t be happier with the type of success he’s found on “Blue Bloods.” In the 2011 interview, he talked about how satisfied he is with what he’s accomplished.

“Hey, I just played a sold-out arena tour, a sold-out Fenway Park. I’m shooting one of the 20 most-watched television shows in the country, seen in 25 countries around the world. And I can still put on shades and baseball cap and walk into Target with my kids and nobody knows who I am. I love that. Love it,” Wahlberg said.

The way Donnie Wahlberg tells it, he enjoys having a certain level of anonymity. That wouldn’t be an option for him walking in Tom Selleck’s shoes. Again, this interview happened 10 years ago now. So the Wahlberg brother has definitely become a more familiar face. But he still seems happy in the Danny Reagan role.