Psych follows Shawn Spencer who has developed a keen eye for detail after being instructed by his police officer father to note even the most minute details of his surroundings. After Shawn calls in a tip on a crime to the police, he is accused of committing the crime. To try to clear his name, Shawn convinces the police that he is a psychic.
Rugged, hirsutely handsome Corbin Bernsen blazed to TV stardom in 1986 on _"L.A. Law" (1986)_ (qv) as ...
A retired police officer, Henry Spencer raised his only son, Shawn, to follow in his footsteps, schooling him in detective work from a very young age. The character is based loosely on series creator Steve Franks' father, a police officer who wanted his son to choose a similar career path. He would sometimes try to hone Franks' observational skills by asking how many people were wearing hats in a restaurant, a tactic which Henry employs with Shawn in the series pilot.
He's the son of Henry Spencer, Sr., and followed his father's footsteps in becoming a detective, but does not seem to get along with him, and is estranged from his younger brother, Jack Spencer.
Police Chief Karen Vick offered Henry a job as police liaison between the SBPD and its external divisions (mainly Shawn's psychic detective agency). Henry initially declined the job offer, preferring retired life but later accepted it, while pursuing the serial killer Mr. Yin.
After solving one of his old cases, Henry turns down Chief Vick's offer to rejoin the department as a Detective and that he won't stay on in his current position. To the surprise of Shawn, who seems to finally come to understand and respect his father, saying that he is ready for retirement and that he has lost respect for the badge because his friends had been dirty cops and sabotaged his case years before.
Henry is a guy who's very, very disciplined. He always has been disciplined. He believes order is what gets you through the day … The dynamic of the guy is that, though, his own order torments him and when he breaks his rules it drives him nuts, and he probably takes it out on Shawn.
Henry is disappointed by Shawn's unwillingness to conform to his ideals, and when the series begins the two appear to have been estranged for some time, to the point that Shawn is unaware that Henry has moved back to Santa Barbara. Shawn is "being everything Henry wants him to be, but he's not being it Henry's way," making Shawn's work a source of both pride and frustration. As the show progresses, the two begin to mend their relationship.
With Henry's career now behind him and his wife out of his life (he was divorced in 1992), Shawn is essentially the only family he has left, making him more willing to accept his son despite a lingering disappointment. Although Henry expresses disdain at Shawn's new career as a psychic detective, expressing his deep dislike of both private investigators and psychics, he appears to be secretly proud of his son's investigational skills and saves newspaper articles concerning Shawn's exploits.
Henry Spencer Photos
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