DETROIT 187 “Stone Cold” Review

DETROIT 1-8-7 “Stone Cold” Episode 16 – My boss Eric warned me but I wouldn’t listen. Damn me, I wouldn’t listen! My Daemon’s TV peeps keep being right. It needs to stop. I should go on a hunger strike or something.

I was doing pretty good this week; following an exemplary episode of Harry’s Law on Monday, I came into Tuesday’s episode of Detroit 1-8-7 filled with good cheer and hope. The show had really ratcheted up the drama with the previous episode, “Legacy/Drag City,” introducing us to Riley Sullivan (an emotive Kristina Apgar), the junkie ex-girlfriend of Detective John Stone (the cool-but-intense D.J. Cotrona), and putting us on notice that not only was there a probable love triangle about to happen, but that Stone was in some real hot water with the local gangs.

Then the show took a week off. I almost forgot. They lulled me into a sort of expectant but complacent haze. “Stone Cold” began, I settled in, and things were going as planned…

BLAM. BLAM. BLAM. BLAM.

Stone is shot dead, betrayed and murdered by the hand of Quentin “Pup” Clemmons (J.D. Williams, using every great lesson he learned while working on The Wire). Pup had just revealed himself to be D.E.A., you see. They were going to pretend Stone was a crooked cop to draw out international drug lord Amir Sakhani (the fantastic and quietly menacing Nick E. Tarabay, apparently on loan from Spartacus), but Pup turned the tables on Stone and shot him dead as proof he was Sakhani’s man.

But wait! Triple cross! Stone was wearing a bullet-proof vest filled with blood taken from a nearby blood bank! (“A little cold,” Stone later said of the chilled blood. And I laughed. I laughed with relief.) Sakhani gets busted, Pup is one of the good guys, everything is a-OK in Detroit.

See, that should have clued me in right there. Because it’s never a-OK in Detroit. Not for long.

Show’s winding down, Stone and Sanchez (a sultry Natalie Martinez) have a nice little love scene, I’m expecting credits to roll.

No. No. Bastards.

As soon as Sanchez said, “I left something up in the apartment,” I knew someone was gonna die. I initially thought it would be Sanchez. I half-expected the apartment building to get blown sky high or something. (Though in retrospect, that would have been a little Michael Bay of them; like who in Detroit can afford explosives?) Part of me thought the whole “Stone Cold” thing was a red herring; the constant references to cold stones was thematic. Hell, the Dawn Cofield murder was even solved with a cold stone—a diamond socialite Bonnie McCord (a cooly indignant Shanesia Davis) had inadvertently left behind after accidentally killing her son’s rape victim.

But when Riley and her addiction-shaken frame appeared, I knew Stone was screwed.

“There’s a bounty on you,” she slurred. BLAM. BLAM.

Game over, man. Stone’s gone.

I’m still slightly depressed. What a good character. Even Sanchez capping that bitch did nothing to quell the sadness of that scene.

Of course I’ll tune in to see where this goes. It will be interesting to see what roads Martinez will be able to take Detective Sanchez down now. Was she in love with Stone? If it wasn’t love, exactly, it was coming close. I imagine Stone’s death is going to have a lingering effect on the entire precinct. There’s a hole left in the show itself; Stone was a damned good character. How do you just lose that? The next episode (“Motor City Blues”) will probably tell us a lot what direction the story might take from here.

But can we really know? These writers (kudos to Mike Flynn who was responsible for this one) have shown the willingness and ability to completely fake us out.

And that’s not even broaching the subject that is the real elephant in the room, which is Detroit 1-8-7′s declining ratings. Will this excellent team even be allowed to fake us out any more once this season is done? It seems as though there’s a thousand different ways it can go. I want to see it go there! I want more of Fitch messing with Washington, more of dippy Wendy being dippy Wendy, more of Jess being put in her smug little place (I still think she and Fitch will hook up).

Great episode. Great series. Don’t kill one of the best cop shows on TV, ABC. Do I need to start a petition?

Follow me on Twitter! That’s @Axechucker! We’ll petition ABC to dump Desperate Housewives in favor of Detroit 1-8-7! Who’s with me?! Raaaah!!.