Southland Review: "Failure Drill"

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When everyone else runs away from gunfire, cops run toward it. That thought sunk in as I watched the terrified employees scamper screaming from the building, while Lydia and Josie steadily inched their way closer to a madman.

When Southland opened with the explanation of a “Failure Drill," I knew someone would be taking that head shot by the end of the episode. The intensity of that entire scene had me sitting on the edge of my seat.

Failure Drill Scene

Where Lydia excelled, John was failing. He started off the day with the local drug dealer wishing him well because he’s one of his best customers. If that didn’t tell him how far he’d fallen, I don’t know what would. John took too many pills, slept in the patrol car and it was sheer luck that he and Ben both survived the day.

In a scene both hysterical and frightening, Ben tried to run the community meeting. Seeing him helplessly flounder through the presentation was funny. He looked so awkward holding that silly looking doll. But it was scary to think that all of those parents were there hoping to better protect their children. John may have thought this was the safest way to spend the day, but not if you’re a small child in a car accident with a faulty car seat.

By the end of the day, Ben stepped up. He’d had enough and told John just that, face to face, man to man. Did it do any good? It didn’t seem to get through, but we’ll see what happens next week. My guess is that John’s downward spiral isn’t over.

Thankfully, it looked like Sammy was finally pulling it together. The look on his face when his soon to be ex showed up during his investigation was priceless. She put a find my friend app on his phone and he never knew it. I’m sure all the gang bangers in the city would love to know that. I was pleasantly surprised when Sammy held it together back at his former home.

Tammy’s lover wouldn’t leave them to have a private conversation. Instead of yelling at the man, Sammy simply had him help move the swing set. Perhaps Sammy will inch his way towards adulthood before his baby arrives.

Why does Lydia’s one serious love interest have to be Josie’s son? And just when these two were starting to mesh as partners. Of course he had to be nice and funny and he really liked her. This poor woman can’t catch a break.

Next week is it, folks. It's the season finale and anything can happen to our Southland crew. I can't wait to see what's next. 


Editor Rating: 4.6 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (28 Votes)

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.


Although Tammy is the worse of the two, if Sammy were a grown up he would have left his irresponsible, druggie wife and he would have taken precautions not to get her pregnant. Who knows if she's been using during this pregnancy. Lydia's new guy being Josie's son surprised the heck out of me. I want to see Josie's reaction. I doubt it will be good. The shootout had me on the edge of my seat too and Josie's injuries to her face looked painful. And now we see if John hits rock bottom. I can't imagine what they have planned for the finale.


Sammy's not an adult because he can't reconcile his twit scumbag wife taking his home and moving in some Antonio Banderas wannabe? The man has taken shot after shot from that....(one thousand derogatory words) woman and tried to make it work. Your review paints him as a child. It's an unfair portrayal. Tammy is, by a large margin, the most hateful despicable character on TV right now...And I would put her up against any other character in the last ten years. I think the man shows remarkable restraint in not driving her jawbone into her brain whenever he talks to her. Ben shows remarkable restraint in this ep too. I would have reported the man by this point...and I would have refused the task of teaching mothers how to use car seats....He endangered lives there, didn't he? The Lydia-Ochoa Boy thing was cheesy melodrama. If they want to pursue it, I'm just going to fast forward it. A sucky development, really. Good shoot out scene...But, realistically, wouldn't they be reporting where they were through the entirety of the encounter? And their initial report was VERY incomplete, wouldn't they at least update..."Er...deranged killer with M16 assault rifle." They try to bring realism to the show, but they dropped the ball here. I REALLY hate the old saw where the lone cop puts down the bad guy, and then the very next second the sirens approach. In closing....More Chicky.


John was awesome last night, I love him and he make the show exciting to watch, Lydia was great as usual.I am greatful to the producers of southland thank u.

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Southland Season 3 Episode 9 Quotes

Lydia: So, Fernandez goes to some management training retreat and now tweedle dee and dumber are in charge of finding a killer?
Josie: Hey, my kids didn't learn to clean their room until I stopped doing it for them.

Sammy: Thanks for coming with me.
Officer: Can't let you face those church ladies alone. Those b*tches are mean. My Momma's one.