We knew that Officer Doug Stanton was a bad cop will before The Rookie season 3 episode 3 even aired. Everything we saw tonight reinforced that.
Jackson West was assigned Stanton as a training officer, and out in the field he saw numerous examples of racism out in the field. The culmination of that happened when Stanton held a family at gunpoint in what was a case of profiling and mistaken identity. West realized how terrible this was and vowed to do something about it. The problem was that no one would listen. At first, Bradford dismissed Brandon Routh’s character for his actions, claiming that Stanton was just “rough around the edges” and that some cops were like that. Meanwhile, Sergeant Grey was unwilling to do something more than just assigning him to desk duty while the situation was sorted out.
What we saw with both Grey and West was a larger problem with the institution, one in which characters are reluctant to understand problems — or are just too jaded. We think both Grey and Bradford knew that Doug was a bad guy, but that there were so many hoops that had to be jumped through. Maybe they didn’t think it would be possible to get Doug fired, but that doesn’t mean that Jackson wants to stop. As a matter of fact, he’s determined not to. (We got more insight on Grey at the end of the episode, as he was frustrated that he did what he had to in order “to survive,” and not enough to change the system.)
Kudos to Routh for taking on a role this difficult and bringing a light to a terrible problem within this country — this is timely subject matter and The Rookie is taking a look at it head-on.
As for what else we saw within the episode, John and his mother had an important heart-to-heart when it comes to being on the same level with each other. They don’t have to worry about putting on a performance; instead, they can just be themselves.
What did you think about The Rookie season 3 episode 3?
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