Crossing Jordan is an American television crime/drama series that aired on NBC from September 24, 2001 to May 16, 2007. It stars Jill Hennessy as Jordan Cavanaugh, M.D., a crime-solving forensic pathologist employed in the Massachusetts Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. The show used an ensemble cast approach that featured a group of Jordan's co-workers and police detectives assigned to the various cases. Its roster of central characters was created by Tim Kring, who also developed its core format. The title refers to both the name of the main character, who is commonly shown as "crossing" others—especially authority figures—to learn what she wants to know, and the biblical metaphor of the ancient Hebrews crossing the Jordan River, commonly used in spiritual songs to represent death and passage to the afterlife.
During the first two seasons, the series used a gimmick whereby Jordan and her retired police detective father Maximilian "Max" Cavanaugh role-play the events leading up to that episode's murder, which were depicted by showing Jordan playing the part of the victim or suspect in a recreation of the scene, the idea being that such role-playing would help Jordan to figure out the circumstances of the crime, like a criminal profiler. This element of the series was mostly dropped when Howard left the series as a regular; however, there were instances of Jordan role-playing with other characters, such as Woody and Macy.