SOUTHLAND: 3.10 “Graduation Day”
After the rough episode a couple of weeks ago, Southland has bounced back nicely, and the season finale episode really emphasized this. It was a really good one all around. Officer Sherman’s brutal fight scene with a suspect on the roof of the building was a real highlight; and in true, raw Southland style this rooftop fight/chase ended when the suspect tried to jump over to another building, missed the ledge, and fell eight stories or so down to the ground, with the camera watching almost the whole way. After the fight, we get the best scene of the episode, and maybe of the series, when Sherman blows up at Cooper, accusing (truthfully of course) his training officer of being too doped up on pain meds to be anything but a liability on the street. Sherman gives Cooper an ultimatum: either let me take you to rehab tonight, or I tell the boss to give you a drug test. Cooper finally swallows his pride and chooses the former.
Lydia’s secret relationship with her partner’s son is revealed, and partner isn’t very happy about it. The writers dropped in a bit of dark humor when Lydia’s partner called her a “child molester” for having a relationship with a twenty-eight year old, just as the two detectives were actually investigating a real sexual assault on a fifteen year old. Regardless, things are left a little up in the air between these two.
Sammy sees the birth of his son, and then asks to Sal if he can go back to being a patrol officer. Seems like a dangerous choice to me, with the new kid and all, but he seems to think he can do more good there, and perhaps the time away will let him heal after Nate’s death.
The last scene of the episode was just awesome. It’s morning at the police station, and the officers are headed to their patrol cars. Sammy and Sherman have been paired together, and on the walk to the car, Sammy’s blurting out his own version of the “rookie don’t screw up” speech that we’ve heard from Cooper plenty of times before; all the while, Sherman’s got a look on his face that just screams “here we go again.” I had a smile on my face throughout the whole thing.
So, all in all, a great finale and a very good season. Early rumor has it that Southland will get picked up for another season, so I am really looking forward to where they place Cooper after rehab, and to see how Sherman and Sammy interact as partners. I’d also like to see a little bit more about the character’s lives when they’re off duty. Not too much, mind you; I don’t want this to become a soap opera, or God forbid, the latter seasons of ER, but just a little more insight into the off-the-clock lives of these characters, like we got to see in the first season, would be very welcome.
Anyone else have any thoughts?