Southland Review: Surviving the City of Angels

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Southland returned Sammy and Ben to the streets for Hood Day this week, while the "Community" threw a party. Well, the celebration wasn't exactly for the cops, but for the man hanging on a pole with a knife in his back. As Ben noted:

 It's not everyday a murder scene turns into a block party. | permalink

I suppose the demise of a cruel dictator is a cause for jubilation, whether he rules a country or a city block. It certainly didn't take the neighborhood long to hand out justice. Sammy couldn't have left him there more than two minutes. Street justice is both swift and deadly.

Even the new Captain didn't seem to care about the dead man in police custody. His only question was whether they followed proper procedure. I like how Sammy and Ben didn't miss a beat when they answered in unison, "Absolutely."

Bottoms Up, Ben

I'm loving all the new partners this season. Come what may, Ben and Sammy will always have one another's backs, but my favorite is Cooper and Tang. 

These two can argue the merits of castration of sex offenders over dim sum and then agree to let an assault victim take a fair punch at his assailant. On the outside they may appear very different, but their attitude and sense of right and wrong make them the dynamic duo to watch.

The best part is that we finally get to see Cooper enjoying being a cop again. Now that he's healthy and off the pain meds he can appreciate a partner who's an equal instead of a trainee. 

Plus the name. Cooper and Tang. It reminds me of some cheesy '80s cop action movie. I just love how it sounds.

How great were Ben's colleagues when they gave him the Dumbest Cop Award to wear with pride? He certainly earned his dunce cap on that one, but it looks like he's making the most of his notoriety. 

Now... has Ben been in bed with a new girl every episode this season?!? And this one got off on seeing the YouTube video of him hitting some high school girl? This badge bunny's a little twisted. 

Later, Ben ended up taking the girl from the broken down vehicle out to the bar. Why was she so shocked that strange men were circling her car like sharks? That skirt she's wearing was barely wide enough to be considered a belt.

Ben's certainly making the most of his new bad boy image, that's for sure.

Elsewhere, Lydia and Ruben's storyline felt dull in comparison to the rest, but I love that they didn't even bother to chase their murder suspect down when he tries to run. They knew he wouldn't make it far.

As usual, the fascinating thing about Southland isn't just the cross sections of life on the streets of L.A. but how these cops react to them - and it just gets better every week. So, tell me: who gets your vote for best partnership so far this season? 


Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0 (19 Votes)

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

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Such an incredible show! I hate that its only on for 2 and a half months before we have to wait almost a full year for more! I really hope next year it gets the full season treatment it deserves! Im so happy that TNT saw something in this show, its my second favorite cop show ever (homicide:life on the street) and id be heart broken if it gets cancelled! Please get everyone you know season 1of on dvd for their birthday to get them hooked!

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Lydia and Ruben's story did seem a little sedate this week but you can't have explosions all the time--and as detectives, they are usually responding to specific things after the fact. The regular street teams are usually the ones who often have to run and gun. I LOVED it when Tang said, "If you flinch, you to jail. If you duck, you go to jail."

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I agree with EVERYTHING in this well-written review. I love the fact that this new season seems to be focusing on the "action on the street" instead of the family dramas, as in past seasons. This season is great beyond belief--I hope that it continues and that "Cooper and Tang" remain partners as well--AWESOME SHOW AND AWESOME SEASON!!

Southland Season 4 Episode 3 Quotes

Cooper: How you feeling?
Tang: I could go another twelve rounds.

Parking enforcement's on the warpath.

Sammy
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