This week’s episode of APB was an improvement from the last few episodes, and that was mostly due to two very talented guest stars: John Heard and Vincent Curatola. I mostly know John as “the father” in the Home Alone movies and the bad guy in Big but he’s been in a million things over the years. Vincent Curatola has a long list of TV credits playing mostly mobsters and judges, but you know him as John Sacramoni aka Johnny Sack from The Sopranos (Heard was also on the first season of The Sopranos but never alongside Curatola’s character). Vinnie is back to playing an Italian mob boss here and as the bad guy of the week is given criminally little to work with (see what I did there?). Heard has a more memorable pass, possibly recurring if the show lives long enough, as Gideon Reeves’ scam artist father Joe Reeves, in debt to mafia don Leo Moretti (Curatola).
We first meet Joe Reeves betting on horses in a shady Chicago bar. Two mob enforcers enter looking for him because he skimped on his last few payments of $15k to Leo Moretti, only paying him $13k each time. He owes about $25k. Knowing math above a fourth grade level is beyond these two, Joe tries to mentally run circles around the guys to weasel out of trouble, but they’re not buying it. So he resorts to other means–hitting one of the guys over the head with a metal thing (didn’t catch what it was–a napkin dispenser? Would that knock somebody down?) and hightailing it out of there.
Gideon himself is testing out his new fancy schmance “micro drones.” They are literally what they sound like. Smaller versions of the drones we’d already seen, but these can evaluate a crime scene in under five seconds. Captain Conrad enters and tells him there’s a guy here wanting to be a new C.I. And it’s his father. Gideon immediately knows what’s wrong. Some other scam of Joe’s went wrong and now he needs to play Gideon and the 13th District to make up for it. Joe says he really wants to help take down Moretti, which Murphy is immediately juiced up about. He’s one of the biggest criminals in the city and they’re having a shortage in willing C.I.’s as the last one was brutally killed. Eventually Murphy convinces Gideon to agree.
Joe has some intel on Moretti looking to sell some stolen uncut diamonds. He could propose to Moretti that he hook him up with some interested customers, then they could surveil the deal and finally arrest Moretti, who is usually very careful. But first he needs to make peace with the guy. He needs to offer him $25k. Gideon thinks his dad’s going to steal it so they hook him up with a replica of his nice watch; this one has recording capabilities as well as GPS tracking capabilities, and an alarm goes off if Joe removes it from his wrist.
Joe meets Moretti and his men at a place called “The Pretty Kitty” and you can probably guess what their business is from the name. Moretti is happy to have the $25k but he’s still angry Joe cracked one of his guys over the head with that metal thing. For a moment it looks like he’s going to have Joe killed and Murphy moves the tactical team in to save him, but Gideon calls her back when Joe is able to stabilize the situation. Joe tells Moretti he has some Israelis who are interested in purchasing those diamonds he has–which he knows about only because Moretti’s goons were talking about it in front of him. “Five-hundred grand, tomorrow,” Moretti tells him. And that’s that.
In a quiet moment, Murphy tries talking to Gideon about his relationship with his father. He almost died last night. “That doesn’t worry you?” she asks. Gideon explains his father is the scum of the earth, he’s had many shots at redemption, and he knows he is not going to change, because he can’t. Even Captain Conrad tells Gideon to make things right with his father before he is sent in to do this final deal with Moretti. When Gideon goes to find him, though, he is surprised/not surprised. Turns out Joe was able to bypass the alarm on his watch/tracker, trick security into letting him into the evidence room and makes out with the $500k they procured for the deal with Moretti.
Gideon of course believes his father fled Chicago with half a million dollars, but Murphy knows career criminals better than that. Joe can deal with police, but he doesn’t want somebody like Leo Moretti hunting him for the rest of his life. He is going to stay in Chicago and make the deal. They don’t know where it’s going down, though, and Moretti is very careful when he’s about to do a deal like this, almost impossible to track. Luckily: MICRO DRONES! Gideo has all four of them follow the cars that leave Moretti’s home to go to the deal, and they finally lock onto the car that actually has Moretti in it. They follow it all the way to a zoo, where Joe is indeed waiting to do a deal with the mob boss–on the merry-go-round of all places.
Thing is, he only brought $400k. Says the Israelis only had $300k, and he Joe himself had to put in an extra hundred grand just to save face with Moretti. He could kill Joe here, but then he’d never get to the Israelis, and that could get messy. Moretti decides to take the money and the second he grabs the duffle bag, Murphy and her team head in and arrest him. Simultaneously the merry-go-round starts up, with lights and music blasting, and they lose Joe.
At the end of the episode, Joe calls Gideon from some tropical place, to tell him he loves him and is proud of him. He’s not such a bad guy after all, huh? Actually, wait, he is becaue he stole $100k from his son and embarrassed him in front of the entire 13th District. Not all warm and fuzzy at the end after all.
Overall, the guest appearances brought a little more talent and watchability to the show this week, and I hope either Heard and/or Curatola are recurring characters (though it looks like Curatola’s character is headed for the slammer). I was also very happy that the climax of the episode did not take place in an abandoned Chicago warehouse this week, perhaps for the first time. So. Points for that.
Season 1, Episode 6 (S01E06)
APB airs Monday at 9PM on Fox
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Paul Gulyas | Contributor