Southland Review: "Discretion"

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Ben’s demons came back to haunt him on the latest installment of Southland.

Discretion” showed us that even though this cop may be all grown up with a badge and a gun, there is a beaten, traumatized 10-year old that still exists and he may be Ben’s downfall.

I felt for Ben as he tried to control his warring emotions, with little success. His barely controlled rage impaired his judgment not only when dealing with his mother’s rapist, but also in every decision he made during the episode.

Ben and his Mother

I was a little surprised he didn’t tell John about the rapist being set free. I suppose he wasn’t sure how is partner would react. Of course, I understood when John told him, “I will not risk my job and my pension over you.” Ben hid the information from him, then acted recklessly, putting John in harm's way.

If Ben had confided in him at the start, John’s reaction may have been different.

The case of the bloodied chainsaw was great. Simple accident or decapitated body, the results could have gone either way. It made me wonder how often companies that rent this type of equipment run into this issue: finding unknown substances caught in the blades once the machine is returned. Scary.

Elsewhere, Lydia and Josie’s thinly veiled annoyance with one another is really amusing. They are both so strong and independent, neither of them know how to back down and let the other lead. It’s nice to see them gain a grudging respect for each other as they come at their cases from different points of view.

I was surprised Lydia didn’t loan Russell the money he needed. I suppose Josie’s words really bothered her. But she and Russell are good friends and it isn’t like he’s gambling or drinking it away. He’s going through a messy divorce and his accounts have been frozen. I think that’s when a good friend steps up and helps, no?

When Lydia said she wouldn’t loan him the money because she doesn’t want to mess up their friendship “with money stuff,” it was already too late. Pretty sure she just did.

And Sammy is just spiraling out of control, not that I can blame him. With his pregnant wife living in his house with another man and refusing to take a paternity test, I don’t know how long Nate can help him hold it together. I doubt we’ve seen the worst of this situation. I wonder if Sammy will survive it.

Do you think Lydia’s right and I’m wrong about the “money stuff?” What did you think of John’s reaction when Ben lost it with their suspect? Am I overreacting about Sammy’s fate?

Discretion Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.9 / 5.0 (17 Votes)

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

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Southland Season 3 Episode 3 Quotes

All cops have to make judgment calls they hope they won't regret. No cop ever bats a thousand.


Lydia: I am really happy for her though 'cause she's got this guy. He treats her nice. He's great. I just never thought that when my 62 year old Mom moved back in that she'd be having more sex than me.
Russell: Well, she couldn't be having less.