We finally got an Upton and Rojas team up on Chicago PD Season 7 Episode 18, but it wasn't what any of us were expecting.
Both ladies tried to take matters into their own hands and ended up on Voight's bad side, which, if you remember from my review of Chicago PD Season 7 Episode 17, is not a pleasant side.
While Rojas had a few anxiety-inducing missteps this episode, which largely stemmed from a loved one being involved in a major case, much of Voight's anger was directed at Upton.
And she deserved it.
I don't know what got into her, but where was the Upton who always keeps Halstead in check?
Instead, she got personally involved in the case because she wanted to help Rojas and made an extreme decision that triggered Voight. (Fans were probably pleased to see that he's still got it!)
Voight was upset for a few reasons. For starters, because Upton was a superior who should have known better.
And unlike Rojas, who immediately acknowledged that what she did was wrong and apologized, Upton never felt bad about it.
She naively assumed she had the same authority as Voight.
Her judgment was clouded by her desire to put Gael away and get Reyes the deal, so she did what she had to do and planted fake evidence without showing any remorse.
While Gael deserved what was coming, it wasn't Upton's place to plant evidence merely to get justice. That sets a dangerous precedent.
Cops need to be held to a standard and uphold a moral code. If Upton is so comfortable crossing this line because it benefits her and a friend, will she be able to see the line the next time around?
If she had done it with Voight's permission, it would have been a slightly different story since Voight would have taken the rap. Plus, he's in a position to make such calls, but she specifically went behind his back and made the decision herself without even looping him in.
Then, instead of owning up to it, she explained that she thought it was what "he would have done" knowing damn well she kept it a secret because Voight wouldn't have allowed such behavior.
Pissed at her? No, I don’t even know her.Reyes
Voight has never wanted his unit to go down the same path he has, and I love that he didn't think twice about showing her tough love.
It shows that there are some rules he won't break, but also, that he cares enough about Upton to intervene.
Now, I don't watch Law & Order: SVU, but it would be really great if she actually got to guest-starred on an episode since he volunteered her to the New York team. Does anyone know if that's happening?
*Edit: Shortly after the episode, reports revealed that Tracy Spiridakos will serve her temporary assignment on Dick Wolf's other show, FBI.
Since Rojas was personally involved in the case, it made us automatically more invested in the plot because the stakes were higher.
If this guy’s anymore careful, I’m going to blow my brains out.Halstead
While it was clear that Rojas and Reyes went way back and had a deeply personal connection, their relationship wasn't immediately clear and it was hard to see why she was so willing to put her career on the line for him.
It wouldn't have been believable if it was just an ex or even an off-again-off-again boyfriend, but Rojas felt like she owed Reyes because he was the one who gave her a second chance.
He took the fall when they were stealing cars, which allowed her to have a fresh start and make something of herself.
You would think she'd want to show that off, but Rojas surprisingly never told him that she was a cop, which further complicated the situation.
She didn't purposefully try to mislead him, but that's how it came off when he saw her standing there during the drug bust.
And honestly, Voight's ruthless for forcing her to be the face of the arrest. He was testing her to see if she was willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for her job, which she was.
Rojas was simply too afraid to admit that she'd kept her new life a secret because the truth meant she'd lose Reyes.
She was lying to herself for a long time thinking she could have the best of both worlds, but those two paths were eventually going to coincide.
Their lifestyles were too different now. Even Reyes knew that when she said they "know the same people," and he told her "not like that."
She wanted to move forward with her life, but she didn't want to let go of her old life.
It's extremely difficult to get what you want while also being forced to say goodbye to what's familiar, and Rojas was forced to do it under extreme circumstances.
I don't know why Rojas thought it was a good idea to go undercover in her old neighborhood where someone could have easily recognized her, but I'll chalk that up to an oversight.
Upton: Vanessa, you’ve told the people in your life you’re a cop, right?
Rojas: I don’t really have a lot of people. Just him, really. And no, he’s got no idea I’m a cop.
On the bright side, her desire to protect him shows she's "ride or die" for the people she cares about, which is a good thing for Upton and the rest of Intelligence.
While Reyes' outcome wasn't great and their relationship likely won't bounce back -- he even said he never truly knew Rojas considering he thought she worked at a halfway house -- it could have been much worse for him.
I'd like to think he'll use the second chance that Rojas and Upton gave him -- which was essentially Rojas' way of repaying him for all he's done for her -- to start a new life.
While Upton may have poorly picked her battles on the episode, I loved how she talked Rojas up to Reyes and told him that she was recruited to the city's "elite team."
I'm all about women supporting women!
Plus, these two have been living together for 8-months now, and we've been missing out on key bonding moments between the ladies.
I was starting to wonder when we'd see their roomie-status utilized in an episode.
Usually, gang and drug bust episodes are, well, a bust, but this one was approached creatively and in a way that allowed the unit to work cohesively.
Look, Vanessa, believe me, it’s real simple. I know it’s not easy, but it is real simple. There’s a clear line between cops and criminals. You chose to be on this side, that was your choice, your call. Nobody chased you. You think I give a damn about your past? That’s going to make you a good cop, maybe a great cop. One day, but if Luis shows up at that buy tomorrow, we’re going to arrest him. It’s real simple.Voight
Not only did it anchor to a personal story with Rojas, which allowed us to get to know her better, but it also introduced a new way of solving the case -- the wire.
We've never seen Intelligence handle a case using this method, and it was a nice break from the procedural formula.
The outcome was a mystery till the very end.
Gael was a tough arrest because he was extremely cautious about who he allowed into his operation and kept his hands clean at all times. There was absolutely nothing tying him back to any of the gruesome crimes including his girlfriend dumped in acid.
The makeup and costume department clearly had a lot of fun with that one and knew we would be disturbed.
Do you think Upton was right for planting the evidence?
Did Rojas make a careless decision based on something personal? What did you think of the episode? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
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Lizzy Buczak was a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She retired in June 2021..