The Rookie Season 4 Episode 13 Review: Fight or Flight

Cupcake, the alligator, is the star of the hour. It’s too bad we didn’t get to spend time with her.

Oh, what an unusual hour The Rookie Season 4 Episode 13 was with Nolan and Chen spending the day going on a quest orchestrated by a troubled teenager and Thorsen bringing some heartbreak with his attachment to Langston.

Of course, we got a badass Timgela team up, too.

Aaron Thorsen remains an underrated character for this series. As the only rookie remaining, you often wonder why he’s not utilized more, but when he is, it’s always worth watching.

He had a connection to one of the most humorous aspects of the hour and the most heartbreaking. Apparently, his reality series is off to a good start, even though we have not had the chance to witness it.

The addition of his 24/7 assistant made some funny moments. As annoyed as Thorsen was by the guy’s presence, you can’t say he wasn’t damn good at his job. Harper started sending him on fool’s quest, suspecting he’d never complete the tasks, but he always rose to the occasion.

The food mission was funny, but it was his ability to track down her favorite childhood doll that was meaningful to her that made for a heartwarming moment.

Harper’s pregnancy has given us some amusing moments and some stressful ones, and that’s likely to continue until the baby is born. It’s good that she takes her health seriously after her previous issues with her first child. But she also needs to work better at informing James about things rather than assuming she’ll do it alone.

He’s as invested in their child as she is, and you knew he was genuine when he said he wanted to know everything, even if it was her hiccuping wrong. But this also makes you a bit wary that they’ll provide some possible complications with her pregnancy down the road.

Yo, this system is a joke!

Thorsen

But it was Thorsen’s moments with Langston (a welcome appearance by Queen of the South’s Alimi Ballard) that proved to be among the best of the hour. Sometimes it feels like they make Thorsen’s entire identity is that of the wrongfully convicted man who became a cop. It’s about the only thing we know about him, which is unfortunate.

However, there are moments when that part of his story is engaging. Thorsen is in a unique position where he understands exactly how flawed the system is and how it screws people over. He was a victim of it, and no amount of him fighting the good fight within it changes that.

Where most saw Langston as a cop-killer, Thorsen took the time to listen to him, and he realized that there was a chance that Lanston was innocent.

It was an excellent way to incorporate the adorable bromance that is Wesley and James, even if we still have to keep ignoring that the former shouldn’t be associated with law in any capacity right now.

The revelation that they had evidence of Langston stomping and paralyzing a guard during a riot was heartbreaking. The actions of Lanston forever change the poor guard’s life, and now he’s facing 20 to Life for attempted murder. But it’s agitating that Lanston became a victim of his environment, too.

How do you feel about alligators?

Leo

One of the worst parts about a flawed system is that innocent people can go to prison and become something else entirely while in there for survival. They’re unlike themselves. If Langston had never got wrongfully convicted, he wouldn’t have been in a prison riot in the first place.

Now, even if they retry his original case, he has to pay for what happened while inside of a place he was never supposed to be. Harper didn’t get why Thorsen was going above and beyond for a presumed cop killer, and by now, it’s odd that she doesn’t realize how his experience shapes Thorsen’s outlook on things.

He explained it in such a haunting way. He remembers what it was like to spend time in an ancient prison with terrible conditions for something he didn’t do, only to get out and still have people believing he was a murderer. But on top of that label, he hasn’t been able to shake; they never found out who really killed Patrick.

It means that the killer is out there living their lives with no consequence, and that’s unbearable for Thorsen. And if Langston didn’t kill the cop, then all that passion that Harper and other cops have about this man they thought killed one of their own is pointless if the person responsible is still out there.

We have the perfect setup for Thorsen solving his friend’s murder, and I hope that’s something that the series will choose to explore. It’s one of the most compelling loose threads they could’ve introduced.

Nolan’s connection with Leo was charming in its own right. Leo is a good kid, and he made a difference even though he chose an unorthodox way of making a stand.

He made Nolan and Chen work hard, and they busted up a few operations in the process. Leo did everything in his power to steer them toward arresting his stepfather to save his mother. You can’t say the kid doesn’t love her with his efforts to save her from Brian and herself.

He had already lost his father, so he couldn’t bear the thought of losing his mother to her addiction because of Brian.

Of the entire quest, whatever happened with Cupcake made it hilarious. Lucy said that she ate her taser, and it’s too bad we didn’t get to see her and Nolan trying to wrestle that thing or whatever other antics.

Devotion to Cupcake led to them closing the case and convincing Leo to land the helicopter. It’s still mystifying that this kid managed to steal a police chopper and make it up into the air. It’s insane that Chen and Nolan were on the case and indulged him for four hours.

And the tease that he ran out of fuel should’ve been a nailbiter, but it led to an anti-climactic, safe landing.

Just when they thought it was over, Cupcake escaped. Good times, yes?

They gave us some Timgela time, too. For the most part, there wasn’t too much happening with their investigation into the robbery and murders and trying to prove it wasn’t Dez.

Bradford: You OK?
Angela: You know it!

Tim had that funny moment with the dog when they searched the house. But the real excitement didn’t come until they busted through the door to save the hostages and take everyone down.

Tim looked good in his white t-shirt, and then it was on and cracking with smoke bombs and a shootout. It’s always good to see Tim and Angela in the field with each other because they know one another so well. They cover each other well, too.

The pair had a couple of great synchronized moments during the shootout, and it screamed ‘buddy-cop.”

Angela’s badass beatdown was the ultimate highlight, though. The woman is a scrapper! You can bet your ass, Angela Lopez is and always will be “good.”

Often the best way, and the only way, to deal with a person in a crisis is to accept their reality.

Chen

It was not the most exciting out of the bunch for an installment before a month-long break. It even had its dull moments. But they’ll give us something to come back to on February 27.

Over to you, Rookie Fanatics. What did you think of the hour? Which storyline interested you the most? Hit the comments.

Until then, you can watch The Rookie online here via TV Fanatic.

Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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