This week’s episode of APB, the second episode of the series, was another mediocre hour of television, with a few cool moments and ideas thrown in for good measure.
As we know, last week’s series premiere ended with Gideon Reeves’ brilliant APB app being downloaded hundreds of thousands of times, not just in his 13th District, but across Chicago. We open this week with Gideon giving a sort of live promo to people with the app open on their phones, discussing the benefits of the app, and how it works. “Why don’t I just show you,” he says just before smashing the window of a downtown Chicago candy shop, setting off its alarm. Officer Murphy rolls up almost immediately. “Oh, hey, Murph,” Gideon greets her. “Gideon, are you serious?” she asks. Happy with the point he’s made, Gideon tells the people watching that the mayor of Chicago (who is shaping up to be the Big Bad of the series–more on that later) can talk about the problem, but Gideon Reeves is here to bring them solutions. “And jellybeans. I love jelly beans.”
So what’s the mission of the week this week? We soon find out when a pharmacist is robbed at gun points (and gun-butt, as he’s pistol whipped in the face) by a man wearing a stocking on his face. He jacks all the pharmacists prescription drugs (well, not ALL, but a LOT) and gets away, scott free.
Not in Gideon Reeves’ district!
Gideon is actually in the middle of giving his precinct a sort of pep talk (“I’m here to start a revolution.”) when Murphy interrupts him with the news of the pharmacy robbery. “I’m revolutionizing here,” he tells her. The APB app is going off with citizens reporting the pharmacy robbery and sending in photo and video image of the suspect. Murphy rushes to her car, eager to get on her first case as a detective. Gideon joins her, telling her he’s helping her be the best cop she can be. Something tells me she doesn’t want him along for the ride.
A car chase between the suspect and police ensues, which sadly results in a little girl being hit by the car when it veers into a public park. The first of a few unfortunate incidents bestowed upon the citizenry of Chicago by police chases this episode, which ends up going hand in hand with what the episode is ultimately all about: teaching Gideon why the fastest car and best machine isn’t always the winner. With a little girl hurt in his district, Gideon tells Murphy to do whatever she wants, set her own hours, etc. Just solve this case and get the job done.
Trying to hunt down the suspect, the APB app is proving useless as the suspect’s car was so common they are getting way too many hits to respond to. When Officers Brandt and Goss happen upon the car behind an old building, they send a dog, Zingo, to sniff it out. It’s on fire and explodes just as Zingo approaches it, sending the dog flying back. It lay on the ground, and I thought it was dead, and was about to give this episode an F and call it a night. But luckily Zingo did not die, he was just burned. However, Officer Brandt is more determined than ever to catch this guy. It’s personal now.
When they bring the blown up car in, Gideon finds that it had some recent modifications made to it. With Murphy’s help, they narrow it down to four garages in the area that make those specific modifications, and only one that would do it to a stolen car. They interrogate a young mechanic who is a terrible liar, and Murphy calls him on it. He finally admits that the man “Jeb” was in recently, and he even bought a new car from him, a red muscle car. “I can handle a moron in a muscle car,” Gideon remarks. Turns out it’s not as easy as the tech billionaire thinks.
Reeves is soon presented with a brand new Reeves Mark 1 Police Interceptor Drone, designed and created by new character Pete, all a week before deadline. Gideon immediately tells him to pack up his things, he’s coming to Law Enforcement effective immediately. He gets a chance to test his new drone with the red muscle car gets a match through the APB app and police are dispatched. Another chase ensues and yet again a civilian is clipped, forcing Murphy to stop and see if they are okay. As “Jeb” gets away, Gideon sends in the drones. However, the moron in the muscle car even outsmarts him here, going in a tunnel where the drone slams into a wall.
Gideon’s royally pissed with his inability to outsmart petty criminals, with all his amazing technology. Murphy takes him along for “car chase school” where she tells him that he can’t underestimate the bad guys on this job, ever. She later has him over for dinner at her house with her mother and son. Gideon ends up talking to her son, Matteo, who is playing with toy motorcycles. DING! This sets off an idea in Gideon’s head. He immediately tasks Pete with constructing the new 13th District motorcycles.
The next pharmacy is hit before Pete (who we also learn was a pro wrestler named Block Head) can have the motorcycle prototypes completely finished, but Brandt and Goss insist on taking them out. They have to avenge Zingo! They take the bikes out, use the spike strips successfully, and apprehend the bad guy. Woohoo! No surprises here and nothing incredible compelling.
A bit of a cliffhanger however spices things up a little bit. When Murphy is picking up Matteo from her ex-husband’s place, he confronts her about her not having quit the 13th District yet, when she said she would. She tells him she changed her mind and isn’t going to. “Why, because he made you detective?” he asks. He also says it’s pretty odd that he’s only been there a week and she already has a promotion. She doesn’t appreciate the accusation, but then he warns her: the mayor is setting up a task force to look at the 13th District, so “get out while you can.” They think the APB app has made private citizens into law officers and there are clear problems with this (he’s not wrong). “Oh, and by the way, I’m the head of that task force,” he tells her. And that’s where we leave off.
Overall, an entertaining hour that flew by, but certainly nothing earth-shattering or that fresh-feeling here. Hopefully the series will hit a groove as more episodes air.
Season 1, Episode 2 (S01E02)
APB airs Monday at 9PM on Fox
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Paul Gulyas | Contributor