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The Rookie - Secrets and Lies - Review: A Lesson in how to Alienate Viewers

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This week’s episode of The Rookie, delivered an action-packed hour that left viewers at the edge of their seats and left them reeling from the drama when all was said and done. As the credits rolled, many viewers found themselves grappling with mixed feelings, unsure how to process the latest developments. This episode has undoubtedly set the stage for discussions, as fans and critics alike ponder the direction of the show.
The drama with Tim continued this week as viewers learned that Lucy has not heard from him in days. She is tormented by his sudden and unexplained silence, and turns to Angela for help. Angela advises Lucy to have faith in Tim, though she harbors suspicions that something more is at play. Her suspicions are confirmed when she discovers Tim on a stakeout, aiming to arrest Ray for a new crime, thereby burying their tumultuous past. Surprisingly, Tim chooses to confide in Angela without any hesitation which is upsetting, considering he refused to let Lucy, his own girlfriend whom he claims to love, in on things. He cares for Angela, too, so why was he comfortable telling her without a second thought?

"Secrets and Lies” – THE ROOKIE, Pictured: Alyssa Diaz as Angela Evers and Eric Winter as Tim Bradford. Photo: Raymond Liu/Disney ©2024 All Rights Reserved
The situation intensified at the shipyard, where Tim and Angela’s surveillance on Ray uncovered deeper layers to Tim’s personal vendetta, including a harrowing confession at Angela’s home about a past military operation gone awry. Tim admits that he put his professional ambition over the safety of his squad and it cost two soldiers their lives. This revelation not only shed light on Tim’s troubled conscience, but also triggered a confrontation with Lucy where escalating tensions came to a breaking point. After being threatened by Ray at her home, Lucy demanded that Tim let her in. He relented, and the trio worked together to take down Ray and arrest him.

Unfortunately for Tim, his actions did not come without consequences. Tim’s decision to go rogue led to an LAPD investigation, casting a shadow over his integrity and his career. Despite the department eventually siding with Tim over Ray, the repercussions of his decisions rippled through his relationships, especially with Lucy. In a heart-wrenching turn, Tim, grappling with shame and guilt, chose to end his relationship with Lucy. Her efforts to stop him proved futile. Tim’s mind was made up. Despite his remorse over his actions, loving someone should come with the trust that they will accept you, flaws and all AND the decision to be with him should be Lucy’s to make, not his. The decision by the writer’s to take this path is very upsetting. Struggles and tension within a relationship do not always need to lead to a break-up. Such a decision, seemingly made simply to inject drama, not only serves to alienate the devoted Chenford fanbase, but appears as a needless plot twist. Having observed similar scenarios unfold in other shows where potential character growth and relationship development are sacrificed for the sake of adding drama to the show, this development feels particularly hurtful. Regardless of where the storyline might head, this particular narrative choice is difficult to support and more importantly, to forgive. The writer’s are going to have to work HARD to make it up to their loyal Chenford fans, especially at a time where ratings matter toward a season 7 renewal.
"Secrets and Lies” – THE ROOKIE, Pictured: Melissa O’Neil as Lucy Chen and Eric Winter as Tim Bradford. Photo: Raymond Liu/Disney ©2024 All Rights Reserved
In another sub-plot, while assisting with the takedown of the homeless encampment, Nolan and Celina stumbled upon prisoners assigned to work detail. When one of the prisoner’s escapes, the duo work to discover who she was and return her to jail before she hurts someone. The prisoner, Teresa Vaghan, was initially convicted of attacking her boyfriend’s mistress. Her choice to flee is baffling, considering she was days away from release. The plot thickened as Nolan and Celina unearthed her true motive: not to confront the woman she previously assaulted, but a shocking new target- the woman who was actually sleeping with her boyfriend, her own mother. Celina and Nolan arrive at the mother’s house just in time to prevent her from harming her mother, or any other family members.
"Secrets and Lies” – THE ROOKIE, Pictured: Nathan Fillion as John Nolan and Lisseth Chavez as Celina Suarez. Photo: Raymond Liu/Disney ©2024 All Rights Reserved
Meanwhile, while at the same homeless encampment, Aaron stumbled upon a backpack belonging to a murdered gymnast who was murdered by her boyfriend, who had confessed to the crime. He ropes Nyla in and they discover the gymnast’s remains. Doubts about the boyfriend’s guilt arise when evidence suggests that his confession to strangling her may have been coerced, considering her cause of death was a gunshot wound to the head. During the investigation, Aaron’s unilateral decision making, including interviewing a witness without her authorization, strains his relationship with Nyla. Nonetheless, they manage to capture the true killer, securing the release of the wrongly imprisoned man. This narrative really highlighted how frustrating the bureaucracy of the legal system can be, especially when the truth has the power to exonerate an innocent person, who was ensnared by the same system. It painted a vivid picture of the arduous journey and numerous obstacles faced in the quest for justice.

"Secrets and Lies” – THE ROOKIE, Pictured: Tru Valentino as Aaron Thorsen, Kedrick Brown and Mekia Cox as Nyla Harper. Photo: Raymond Liu/Disney ©2024 All Rights Reserved
Finally, in a completely ridiculous storyline, despite Nolan’s previously stated adamant stance that he does not want more children, Bailey revisited the topic as if that discussion had never happened, adamantly expressing her desire for a child. Initially hesitant, Nolan eventually warms to the idea. This storyline really begs the question: why does this couple consistently find their way to a happy ending without any real turmoil? The absence of any significant conflict in their relationship, is becoming increasingly exasperating for Chenford lovers, who thus far have not been granted even one angst-free episode.
Over to you, Rookie fans! How are you feeling about tonight’s episode? Is this really the end for Chenford? How will Tim be able to reconcile his past and move forward with his future? Please share your thoughts below and interact with me on Twitter at @middleofcanada.

Cristina manages the site and reviews several shows. She is an Elementary School Counsellor by day and avid TV buff by night. True Crime, thrillers, dramas and dramedy's are her favourite genres. When she is not at work or managing SpoilerTV, she loves spending time with her two dogs, a Chihuahua Pug mix named Holly and Terrier mix named Penny. She also loves Travelling to visit family.

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