The Rookie Season 1 Episode 8 Review: Time of Death

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I've been watching crime procedurals for over two decades, and I've never seen the aftermath of an officer-involved shooting shown as realistically as on The Rookie Season 1 Episode 8.

Putting yourself in someone else's shoes can be difficult. Thankfully, I've never shot nor killed another human being, but John Nolan made me feel his trauma. 

A Split Second Decision - The Rookie

I've probably seen hundreds of shootings on TV shows and Nolan shooting the armed suspect wasn't all that much different. 

It was what happened after the shooting that made my heart pound. 

From the moment he fired his weapon and Bishop declared the suspect dead, everything changed for John Nolan. 

John was suddenly the suspect in a homicide, even though he was a police officer doing his job. Every subsequent moment had him feeling off balance, disoriented, and questioning his actions. 

He had a gun on you. He refused repeated orders to surrender. I would have done exactly what you did.

Sgt. Grey

I agreed with Sgt. Grey's assessment. There wasn't time to use a taser or other non-lethal means, although I understood why Internal Affairs asked those questions. 

The suspect could have surrendered, but he didn't. When he turned and pointed his gun at Nolan, Nolan had no choice. If he hadn't fired, he could have just as easily been the homicide victim. 

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John was left utterly shaken by the experience. 

Although everyone's reactions to the shooting were a bit different, no one didn't support John, and I'm not sure if that says a lot about the bond between LAPD officers, what they think of Nolan or both. 

The Captain Worries - The Rookie Season 1 Episode 8

The Captain and Lopez have been in his shoes and in order to continue being a police officer, Nolan will have to find a way to come to terms with what happened the same way they did. 

It wasn't clear if Bradford had ever shot and killed a suspect but his response to Lopez in this The Rookie quote made me think it was possible:

Lopez: The rooks are asking how they can help Nolan.
Bradford: I found heavy drinking really helped knock out the nightmares.
Lopez: Maybe you should keep that to yourself.

I love Lopez's quick wit and sharp retorts. At times, she seems the most guarded of the T.O.s, and it makes me want to find out more. 

I had no idea that officers involved in a shooting were allowed to choose a companion officer to help them through the process. I wonder if that's standard or something specific to the LAPD. 

Choosing Sgt. Grey was one of Nolan's smartest moves and not just for the reason Nolan stated.

Sgt. Grey: Nolan, why did you choose me to be your companion officer?
Nolan: The rest of them would have told me I did the right thing whether I did or not. I knew if I asked you, you’d tell me the truth.
Sgt. Grey: So why haven’t you asked me?
Nolan: I don’t think I’m ready to hear the answer.

For as hard as Grey hazed Nolan in the beginning, I believe he's earned the senior officer's respect. Grey knows how the process works and the best way to navigate it. 

When John asked to see the body cam footage of the shooting, you could practically hear the blood rushing through his ears. His entire body looked as though he was in that room firing his weapon once again instead of sitting in a chair in the Captain's office watching it on a screen. 

Body Cam Footage - The Rookie Season 1 Episode 8

It's my understanding from watching two decades or more of police procedurals that officers involved in a shooting have to go for counseling afterward. I hope we get the same type of detailed follow-up with that as we did with the incident's immediate aftermath.

Of course, that's assuming that neither Nolan or Lucy end up hurt or killed.

Speaking of Lucy, she's right. Sleeping with John right now was a mistake. The man is an emotionally vulnerable mess, but I still wished he would have spoken up and pushed her to consider a reconciliation. 

Related: The Rookie Scores Full Season Order at ABC!

John and Lucy were good together, and I never thought their breakup was necessary.  With the anguish John is dealing with now, I'm not sure it's the time to decide to try again. 

But even if they both survive the attack, I can only imagine that their relationship will become public knowledge. Then we'll see if Bishop was right about the fallout. 

The shooting not only gave us a superb performance from Nathan Fillion, but we got to meet Commander West. 

I was expecting the relationship between Jackson and his father to be contentious, but that wasn't the case at all. The Commander appears to both like and respect his son and vice versa. 

Jackson Runs Into His Father - The Rookie Season 1 Episode 8

It's Jackson's mom that seems to be the problem. I'm guessing that mom didn't want Jackon to follow in his father's footsteps and join the LAPD, but we'll have to wait and see if I'm correct. 

Bishop got the "tap" from the detectives and planned to take the exam to secure the promotion. 

I'm assuming that something will stand in her way because it feels much too soon for her to move up the ranks and leave Nolan behind. 

I'm wondering if sharing the information about Isabel wearing a wire with Bradford will be what comes back to bite her. 

Can Bradford Save Isabel? - The Rookie Season 1 Episode 8

I was surprised that the detectives pushed so hard to have Isabel wear the wire in the first place.

She'd never met with Marcus Vance before, and it seemed logical that he would check her for a wire during their first meeting. Wouldn't it have been smarter to wait until their second or third buy?

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Now that it all went wrong, will Isabel be killed or is she on the run from both the drug dealer and the cops?

Also, just how much former cop is left in Isabel? Unfortunately, it looks like the junkie has almost completely taken over. 

So TV Fanatics, how do you think the attack on Nolan will turn out? Will there be a second officer-involved shooting? 

If John and Lucy both survive, will their relationship be outed?

And has The Rookie season 1 become one of your favorite new shows that way it has mine?

Check back in for my review of The Rookie Season 1 Episode 9, and until then you can watch The Rookie online here at TV Fanatic.

Time of Death Review

Editor Rating: 4.7 / 5.0
  • 4.7 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.2 / 5.0 (139 Votes)

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

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The Rookie Season 1 Episode 8 Quotes

Just tell the truth to the best of your ability; you’ll be fine.

Sgt. Grey

Nolan: You going to miss all this when you’re a fancy detective?
Bishop: Not at all.
Nolan: What about me?
Bishop: Even less.