9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5 Review: Child Care

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Just when we thought the Ryder family had finished expanding, it just got bigger.

It was a hell of a jaw-dropper when 9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5 revealed that Judd fathered a child years ago, and it left Grace reeling as much as we viewers.

The hour also had a creepy case involving a camera and a kidnapping that should have everyone reconsidering their security measures.

Owen's Date -tall  - 9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5

We'll get the least dramatic storyline out of the way first.

As an Amy Acker fan, it's always a blast when she shows up on television series, and things can certainly get interesting with her dating Owen.

Their date was bizarre, and more than anything, Owen's entire storyline during this hour provided some levity to a dramatic hour. His love life has been a bit on the disastrous side, but you never know where the romantic cards will fall with Owen Strand.

His revolving door of one-night-stands, earning him the hilarious "One Night Strand" nickname, does speak to something deeper going on with him, but until they're willing to delve into that further, it's nothing else to discuss on that front.

One Night Strand  - 9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5

What kind of home training did that blond Mateo walk in on have? Who, in a Post-COVID world, would drink juice right out of the carton in someone else's refrigerator?

It's a good thing Owen raised his standards with the Governor's Chief of Staff. Mateo and Marjan teaming up to meddle in Owen's love life led to an amusing scene, and it goes to show you that it can be fun when Owen gets to interact with other characters a bit more.

Access to an exclusive dating app worked to his advantage with the chief of staffer. Their initial date was awkward as heck, with the two debating whether or not Matthew McConaughey is one of the finest actors of our generation.

And it was a scene that lasted longer than it needed to, but whose sole purpose was to lead to Owen carjacking her car so he could chase after Danica and rescue Katie. 

Dating Disaster  - 9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5

As far as first dates go, that was nothing if not memorable. Can we just hope that Acker has a more extended stint on the show and this relationship of Owen's lasts a bit? I'm still trying to figure out why nothing else happened with him and the cabin lady!

Given the nature of Owen's storyline, Lone Star did that weird thing again where they simply could not let another character, once again, Carlos, have the heroic moment. It was almost similar to 9-1-1: Lone Star Season 2 Episode 8, when Owen shot the person holding T.K. and the others hostage with Carlos beside him.

Grace: Give it to me straight, what are the odds that you are the boy's father?
Judd: It ain't zero.

Carlos did all of that work acquiring footage, pouring through everything there is to do, putting his all into a case that the lad detective was too dismissive of at first, and figuring out who the person was. And by the end, he only got there in time to slap the cuffs on her after his father-in-law went on a high-speed chase and wrestled Danica's weapon away.

It was a bit comical, but by now, it's classic Lone Star, so you roll with it.

Solving a Kidnapping  - 9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5

Nevertheless, it was still a damn good hour for Carlos! We've been craving more time with him in the field and on cases for so long. They delivered that with this episode.

The case was exciting, and they found a way to connect it to the fire, too. Eddie Diaz from 9-1-1 had reason to be wary of all the technology because it was downright chilling listening to Danica talk to little Katie through the nanny cam!

How did her parents not pay attention to that? And who on earth passes their password around to everyone? They learned a harsh lesson on cybersecurity and safety after all of this.

Carlos was like a dog with a bone trying to figure this case out, and I love that he didn't back down even when the lead detective condescended to him and appeared dismissive about his hunches. He knew how to follow his gut, and he was so committed that he was working on it off the clock, too.

Pulling an All-Nighter -tall  - 9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5

Carlos was a whole snack in his glasses, and it was adorable how T.K. tried to help him out until he fell asleep. Sleuthing and investigating look good on Carlos.

He's a natural when he's on cases, and his heart is always in it. He's good at his job, and he's devoted to it for all the right reasons. He would be a damn fine detective. Hopefully, he does take the detective's test.

And Judd, he'll be a damn fine father.

Frankly, I have mixed feelings about this storyline. One doesn't doubt that with Parrack and McClain, they'll spin magic here regardless. By the end of the hour, it was easy to accept the modern blended family falling into place in front of ours and how beautiful that can be.

A Teen's Impact-tall - 9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5

But it's still hard to wrap one's head around this arc hitting us like a mack truck when we've just gotten Charlie. The time jump means that we rarely got the chance to see these two as parents, and they haven't gotten the opportunity to bask in that for long, and now we have Wyatt and his mother entering the equation.

Grace was right in saying that this situation is complicated, but it's no one's fault. No one did anything wrong, per se. Judd didn't know he had a kid out there, and sometime down the line, we can probably expect some honest conversations to happen about that.

Sir, it's come to my attention that, uh, you're a lot taller than I expected. There's no easy way to say this, but I think you're my father.

Wyatt [to Judd]

Wyatt's mother may have thought she was protecting her son, but it doesn't change that she never informed Judd about their child, and Wyatt missed out on having a dad. Once everyone gets acquainted with each other, that's a conversation that should take place.

And Wyatt is an innocent teen who only wanted to know who his father was and sought him out. You could tell how anxious he was even approaching Judd.

Double Daddy -tall  - 9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5

Even though all of this happened before Judd met Grace, it still upset her beyond words. She said some harsh things to Judd at the moment, and it was painful to see so much tension between the two.

My goodness, when Grace cries, we all do. It hurts to see her upset and in pain!

But so often, Grace is this beautiful character who lives up to every ounce of her name that it's refreshing and makes her all the more endearing when she has these moments where she's human and reacts that way. She's not a perfect woman, and I couldn't fault her for not handling the news well at first.

She always pulls it together in the end, which is what happened when she invited Wyatt's mother over for dinner so they could talk. Right now, Grace is managing this situation better than Judd probably is.

Heartbroken - 9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5

The two of them have such a rock-solid marriage and relationship. The Ryders communicate with each other well, and they rarely, if ever, keep anything from one another. It's refreshing to see such a stable married couple who can endure almost anything together.

Through Judd's conversation with Tommy, we learned how Judd met Wyatt's mother and what it was like for him back then. He had a single night with her, and he didn't anticipate that she'd get pregnant because of her age. He remembered her fondly.

You were right about what you said, Judd. You are the same man I married. A good one. You're going to do right by that boy. He's your family, Judd. That makes him my family.


He was so sure that this child was his, and while your respect for this man grows knowing that he wasn't even thinking about shirking responsibility, it still seemed inadvisable that he wouldn't get a paternity test.

Paternity tests aren't bad things. It's rational to request one in situations like this. It's not a reflection on the person or anything like that.

Seeking Tommy's Advice -tall - 9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5

Initially, when Judd specified that he was spending time with his brothers when he met Wyatt's mom, it seemed like there was a chance that Wyatt would belong to one of them. It would've been an interesting twist. And it also could've led to the introduction of any of Judd's brothers, of whom we haven't seen.

But for now, we're meant to accept that Wyatt is Judd's son, and Judd is diving into fatherhood on two fronts. He has to learn how to navigate this new family with two additional people neither Judd nor Grace ever expected.

It's such a heavy, shocking storyline. Judd and Grace are no strangers to angst, drama, and curveballs. It's going to take some time to adapt to this one. Fortunately, Wyatt seems like a sweet boy, and the final scene with his mom holding baby Charlie and her and Grace getting along well was heartwarming.

It's just going to be hard to let go of the Grace and Judd love story and family as we knew it, shifting into something else.

Happy Grudd - Tall - 9-1-1: Lone Star

The others fell to the background during this installment, but it worked for the nature of this hour.

Over to you, Lone Star Fanatics. Are you shocked by this development? Did you miss the others? Hit the comments.

You can watch 9-1-1: Lone Star online here via TV Fanatic.

Child Care Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (5 Votes)

Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. She is an insomniac who spends late nights and early mornings binge-watching way too many shows and binge-drinking way too much tea. Her eclectic taste makes her an unpredictable viewer with an appreciation for complex characters, diverse representation, dynamic duos, compelling stories, and guilty pleasures. You'll definitely find her obsessively live-tweeting, waxing poetic, and chatting up fellow Fanatics and readers. Follow her on X.

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9-1-1: Lone Star Season 3 Episode 5 Quotes

Sir, it's come to my attention that, uh, you're a lot taller than I expected. There's no easy way to say this, but I think you're my father.

Wyatt [to Judd]

I don't keep secrets from my wife.