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Hudson And Rex - The Graveyard Shift - Review

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All of The Graveyard Shift’s action happens in the precinct, or outside in the snow, giving it the feel of a bottle episode. That feel is in no way a negative, as the close quarters of the holding cells, and that the characters are either locked in, or out of, the precinct, only ups the tension this week. It allows John Reardon to give Charlie moments of pure fear and heartbreak when Rex’s life is in serious danger. It is a shame that early in the episode all of the characters feel a little dumbed-down so that the plan can unfold, however Rex's moments of genius, that are silly but fun, almost make up for it. The timing is right for such an episode, slowing the pace as we near the end of the season.

On the television news, we learn:
SJPD seized almost two million dollars in counterfeit bills.
This is the first hint of organized crime since Mankiewicz’s incarceration, eight months ago.
There’s now fear that a new crime boss has emerged.
SJPD suspects the notes are being manufactured off-shore.
Hudson has trained Rex to sniff out the counterfeit bills (and look at his face in the image above. He’s so proud of his puppy).
So far no arrests have been made, but the SJPD is on the case.
Also important to note: This was Jesse’s first television cameo.
Jesse: “It’s my shoulder.”
Sarah: “Yeah, it still counts.”
Charlie: “Does it? Really?”
Speaking of Jesse, he has a date. “With a woman, who’s not my mom this time.”
“Been a while, huh?” Charlie asks. But he isn’t a jerk about it, because he probably thinks the same thing about himself (he thinks it’s been a good eight months since his last date) but… he’d actually be wrong.
Sarah, meanwhile, has a date with her bathtub. It’s her “only date”, she announces, looking at Charlie as she says it. Oh, girl.
Here’s an interesting fun fact about Charlie and Sarah: they’ve already gone out on several dates. They just don’t realize it because they pretend it's work-related, or Charlie needs a leaky ceiling fixed, or Jesse is present. They’re the kind of characters who will keep going on these “not a date” dates, until they have an epiphany in the middle of one of these evenings that, Oh! They’re already dating. And have been for about a year. Oops.
Mankiewicz spends this entire episode calling Sarah Charlie’s girlfriend and no one corrects him. So yes, it’s a thing that’s happening. These idiots in love will be the last two to figure it out though.

Jesse’s date might have to wait, because Mankiewicz has been moved to the cells at the SJPD.
He’s just there for the night, until a space opens up for him in another penitentiary, but the timing is interesting. By interesting I mean super suspicious. There’s a lot in this episode that’s just a little off, and it concerns me the characters are written so oblivious at times. These characters are smarter than that.

Joe’s using it as an opportunity to try and get information out of Mankiewicz about these counterfeit bills. The team is less than thrilled by this, knowing they’ll have to stick around in case it all leads to an arrest.

Jesse’s distracted by his date, which is looking less and less likely to happen. But there’s also ambiguity with whom he’s supposed to be meeting. Jesse never says her name, or how they met, although it sounds like they’ve never actually met in person? Meanwhile, Morgan, the IT temp, is saying some things that hint towards her being Jesse’s date. There are vague suggestions she might be catfishing him, that she created this distraction, for this night, knowing a distracted Jesse mightn’t overthink things like some of her word choices, or the servers being down.
With the servers down, Jesse has downloaded sensitive material off hard drives and onto a USB key. A USB that he leaves on desks, and tosses into the air in boredom.
That sound you heard was me heaving a giant sigh.

Charlie, meanwhile, is trying to get information out of Mankiewicz, but Mankiewicz is playing dumb and acting innocent. In Charlie’s defence, he does look skeptical of Mankiewicz at times, and once the action kicks off his intelligence resets to normal Charlie awesomeness.
Rex’s attention is on a neighboring cellmate, Kai, who soon fakes a seizure. It’s a ruse and once the cell is unlocked and the guard has entered, Kai has his gun and turned it on Charlie. John Reardon pours emotion into Charlie when a gun is aimed at Rex. His “No, no don’t shoot,” is yelled in desperation, and it’s a fear that almost sends tears down Charlie’s face.
Locked in a cell, with Rex locked in another, Charlie figures Mankiewicz out. All the coincidences, it was all planned, with a little help from people on the inside.
Charlie’s phone buzzes with a call from Sarah. “Is that your lady friend?” Mankiewicz asks.
Charlie doesn’t deny it, which unfortunately just makes Sarah a bit of a target later on.

The rest of the team has no idea this is all going on down in the holding cells, and they continue to work on gathering information in the hopes of an arrest.
Joe: “Do you smell gas?”
Jesse: “That’s still lingering? Mushrooms don’t really agree with me.”
But Joe means actual gas. There’s a gas leak in the building. The alarm blares, and the building is evacuated. Outside, the ERU gas company arrives, and guess who the “staff” happen to work for. Mankiewicz.
This is when we find out Morgan too is working for Mankiewicz, when she uses a voice changer to phone Joe, pretending to be Charlie.

Having been broadcast on the news that Rex was trained to sniff out the bills, Mankiewicz uses him to track down his stash in the precinct. Rex is going to prove very useful to Mankiewicz.
Morgan notices that the data from the harddrives was downloaded, not onto the servers but to something external like a USB. Now, despite getting his counterfeit bills, Mankiewicz uses Charlie and Rex to find the USB. Unbeknownst to them all, Jesse is outside in the snow, playing with the USB, throwing it into the air, because he’s fidgeting in the cold. Morgan sees this happening on the security cameras.
Hiding in Joe’s office, Hudson uses the paperclip to try and get into a drawer in search of a weapon. Unable to get the drawer open before Mankiewicz’s goons come, he pockets the paperclip for later.
With a clip he also took, Charlie attaches a note to Rex’s collar and sends the dog off to find Joe.
If you suspend disbelief, Rex hiding in the recycling bin, and then pulling the fire alarm to open the doors, is proof he might just be the smartest out of the lot of them. Charlie, in this episode, included.
Rex exits the building, but Morgan finds him first and pockets the note. She follows Rex to where Jesse, Joe, and Sarah are waiting, and makes up some story about Charlie wanting her to bring Rex to them. Joe’s the only one who doesn’t appear to be buying it.
Morgan hugs Jesse and slips the USB out of his pocket. She heads back to the building and Sarah and Rex follow.
Sarah: “Mind if I tag along? I thought I’d check in on Charlie.”
Despite excuses, Morgan fails to change her mind and the three enter the building. And when Sarah sees the gas company guys with guns, she finally realises more is going on here. And Morgan is involved.
“Well if it isn’t Hudson’s girlfriend,” Mankiewicz snarks as Sarah is brought in. Again, NO ONE DENIES THIS.

With Sarah’s life on the line, Hudson enters the room. He and Sarah are cuffed together, and Mankiewicz informs him he’s taking Rex. You see, Rex could help improve the counterfeiting. If Mankiewicz can fool Rex’s nose, he can fool anyone.
This is Charlie’s face when he's telling Rex it’s okay for him to go with Mankiewicz. How’s your heart? Mine’s in pieces.
Sarah can’t believe Rex has been taken, but Charlie has a trick up his sleeve, in the form of a paperclip, and unlocks the cuffs.

As Mankiewicz moves towards the garage, Morgan comes over his earpiece, informing him the east exit is compromised and they now need to exit via the south tunnel. As they head for the south tunnel, where the vehicle supposedly now waits, Joe and the SJPD arrive and foil their plans. Joe, it seems, wasn’t buying the Charlie he spoke to on the phone; some of Charlie’s phrases were just too out of character. After meeting IT temp Morgan, who claimed to be bringing Rex to them as per Charlie’s orders, Joe grew suspicious.
Morgan wasn’t the one who just sent Mankiewicz and his goons into the ambush, it was Jesse using the voice changer.
After being used by Mankiewicz, and almost dognapped, it’s rather poetic that Rex is the one to close the door on the prison vehicle, and on this chapter of Mankiewicz’s story.

Something tells me we’ll see him again.

The next episode of Hudson & Rex airs March 17th on Citytv 8/7c.

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