THE CLOSER “Death Warrant” Review

THE CLOSER “Death Warrant” Season 7 Episode 8 – A pathological liar who also happens to be a prisoner informs Johnson that a hit is about to go down involving a witness in protective custody, a Mexican drug cartel, and some deadly kissing which begins an episode filled with twists and turns, often too many to keep track of. Although I felt the episode lacked a coherent structure, the case itself trumped the convoluted plot twists which fell short of the show’s usual high standards.

Usually, I’m a sucker for serialized story arcs like the Tyrell Baylor case the show is currently pursuing. But this episode I was far more interested in the case. The Baylor case, as it’s being handled right now, seems static, moving at a snail’s pace as though the writers don’t quite know what their next step is or, more likely, as if they just have too little story for too much time and is now concentrating on spreading out the goods thin as they can go.

The whole point of Gavin showing up, inexplicably (yes, I know he said he’d an appointment with Johnson but it was a pretty contrived excuse to get him into the office) was to let the mole in the office know that he was on to them. That’s not exactly earth shattering news. I was all for the Baylor case because it meant showdowns between Mary McDonnell and Kyra Sedgewick, but honestly I think I just let my excitement for these two actresses sharing a screen get the best of me. I have to ask the question about the Baylor case: what is really at stake? Johnson’s career, possibly. But, to be crass, I don’t think even the esteemed LAPD would fire a deputy police chief over the incidental murder of a black gang member who was only released on a plea bargain. She might face suspension, but anything worse than that seems a bit of a stretch. If the show had left room to doubt that Baylor was completely innocent, well, that would be interesting. But it was determined to put Johnson on the side of right and now she just seems like a lone ranger in a John Ford film. The only other thing at stake, really, is Johnson’s personal judgement of herself. But with the exception of a brilliant breakdown at the end of one episode, Johnson and her fellow officers have adamantly refused to feel guilty about Baylor’s death – indeed, they are quite proud that he is, one way or another, off the streets.

Anyways, we’ll see how the Baylor case ends up, and in the meantime I was genuinely entertained by this episode. Really, anything that involved Mary McDonnell shooting somebody in the face with a beanbag is alright by me.

What did you think of this episode? Sound off in the comments below.

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