3 Reasons to Avoid a ChenFord Relationship

Confession time: I was a complete novice about The Rookie until it was a hot topic at a recent party. And to my surprise, I was immediately called out for my lack of knowledge about the infamous “ChenFord.”

For the other eight people who don’t know what ChenFord means: it’s a clever name for the relationship between Officer Lucy Chen and Tim Bradford on The Rookie. Much to his credit, Eric Winter, the actor who plays Tim Bradford, devised the moniker in season one of the show and promoted it relentlessly on his social media accounts. According to my marketing friends, this did two things: brought the characters, originally intended to be supporting characters, into the forefront of the show. It also substantially increased their story-arc starting in season five because of audience demand for a romantic relationship between Chen and Bradford.

How do I know this? Because I just finished streaming every show up to season six, episode six, “Secrets and Lies.”

I won’t give away any spoilers, so have no fear about continuing to read this.


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Boy Garçon ChenFord


3 Reasons to Avoid a ChenFord Relationship

  1. Power Dynamics. From the beginning, Bradford was not only Chen’s boss but also her trainer. No matter how a relationship like this may evolve, the starting point never changes: they were never equals.
  2. Dating Younger Women. Bradford is about 20 years older than Chen. While I wrote that a younger man dating an older woman is a good recipe for success, the opposite is rarely true because the experience and power dynamics are different when the man is substantially older than the woman. Don’t get me wrong, it can work if it’s just about experience dynamics. But when you put the two together, it will probably not work.
  3. Maturity. Honestly, neither of them has maturity. Bradford is in his 40s and still trying to find himself. Chen started strong but is now just spinning her wheels. That’s the definition of a lack of maturity.

If any of these things apply to you, seriously reconsider starting or continuing a relationship with a younger woman.