Southland

Season 3 Episode 2

Punching Water

1
Aired Thursday 10:00 PM Jan 11, 2011 on NBC
6.8
out of 10
User Rating
93 votes
3

EPISODE REVIEWS
By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

EDIT

Detective Sal Salinger asks Lydia and Josie for help when a four-year-old is killed in a drive-by shooting in a series of gang murders. Officer John Cooper is asked to monitor Dewey after he returns from rehab, Ben Sherman is teamed up with Chickie Brown.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Should have been the Season Premier.

    10
    'Punching Water' was a truly satisfying episode. Cooper learns respect for Chickie firsthand when he is forced to work with a newly-reformed Dewey- who as it turns out is just as obnoxious and incompetent when he's sober. While Dewey's mouth wears on the viewer after a while, Cooper finds a good solution toward the end of the episode. This was a cinematic episode, with a strong central storyline involving escalating gang violence which links all the cases and necessitates the entire ensemble cast working together. Overall, it felt more on-track than last week's offering- with an ending that finally answers the question: What's the worst thing that could happen to Sammy?moreless
  • I could not get into it

    3.0
    I don't know why I could not get into this, but I could not. I have watched it three times and I just don't get into it.



    Part of the problem is that it seems to jump around more than others.



    Part of the problem is that I can't tell what parts are relevant to the story and what parts are just chit-chat.



    Part of the problem might be something about the audio in the first half. I put on my headphones and cranked up the audio and still it seemed to be low volume.



    Part of the problem is the jerk of a cop; bad attitudes don't impress me. There are ample examples of bad attitude in television; I don't need to see bad cops.moreless
  • It was great seeing C. Thomas Howell as Officer Dewey once again. He should be a regular. Some one on the show should be totally despicable and he fits the bill.moreless

    8.0
    The bright spot in this otherwise "dark" episode was when Cooper sends Dewey into the store for coffee, and while he's gone, grabs Ben Sherman, hops into his vehicle, and drives off. The look on his and Officer Chickie Brown's face is priceless. If payback is truly a b**ch - can't wait to see what Chickie has in store for John next week. This was a good - not great episode. It marked a return to the more gritty aspects of life for the cops and detectives, but I think they're trying to cram too much into the 50 minutes. The gangland murders were confusing - it might have been better to stretch the story over a few episodes. This would have allowed more time for character development which is what makes the show so compelling. Why is Ben continuing to see the "badge bunny" - is she fulfilling some need for him? And the disintegration of Sammy's relationship with his wife definitely needs to be fleshed out. But these are not major concerns - I think the writers will get back on track - they certainly seem to be heading in the right direction.moreless
Michael Cudlitz

Michael Cudlitz

Officer John Cooper

Arija Bareikis

Arija Bareikis

Officer Chickie Brown

Shawn Hatosy

Shawn Hatosy

Det. Sammy Bryant

Ben McKenzie

Ben McKenzie

Officer Ben Sherman

Kevin Alejandro

Kevin Alejandro

Det. Nate Moretta

Regina King

Regina King

Det. Lydia Adams

Chic Daniel

Chic Daniel

Vern Daniel

Guest Star

Victor Alfieri

Victor Alfieri

Victor Cifuentes

Guest Star

Stacy Haiduk

Stacy Haiduk

Sally

Guest Star

C. Thomas Howell

C. Thomas Howell

Officer Billy "Dewey" Dudek

Recurring Role

Jenny Gago

Jenny Gago

Det. Josie Ochoa

Recurring Role

Emily Bergl

Emily Bergl

Tammi Bryant

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (6)

    • During the briefing, the names of Officers Rokos and Lisco are mentioned by the watch commander. These characters were named as a shout-out to Will Rokos (co-producer) and Jonathan Lisco (co-executive producer).

    • The idea for the title of this episode came from a conversation Cheo Coker had with Det. Mario Cortez, who had worked with the LAPD gang unit prior to joining SWAT. Det. Cortez said dealing with gangs is like punching water, i.e, no matter how many times you punch a bowl of water, whatever indentation you make, the bowl is filled back up with the water. In essence, no matter how many arrests the police make, because the culture of the gangs exists, there's always someone else to take the place when a gang member is killed. Nothing will change until society in general changes.

    • The line spoken by John Cooper about the "sticky situation" was not in the script. The comment was an adlib from Michael Cudlitz.

    • The character of Aaron Stanley, portrayed by Brandon Fobbs, was named after Cheo Coker's best friend in middle school.

    • According to the writer of this episode, giving the character, Victor Cifuentes, the same name as Jimmy Smits' character in L.A. Law was purely coincidental.

    • When Sammy Bryant told Nate he might name his unborn child, Wayne, after his dad, this was a shout-out to Shawn's father, Wayne Hatosy.

  • QUOTES (6)

    • Nate: Remember his brother, Bigfoot? The funeral... he had stretch Hummers and strippers throwing cash.

    • Ben: (discussing Sally) The Den Mother?
      Chickie Brown: You'd prefer Buzz the Badge Bunny? That's what they used to call her.

    • Chickie Brown: (discussing Dewey after he borrowed money for coffee) I dealt with it for five years, you can't take it for four hours.
      Cooper: When he was drunk, he was funny. If I've gotta hear one more thing about AA, I'm going bring back the Daryl Gates chokehold myself.

    • Dewey: (to John Cooper, who gives it begrudgingly) Hey, gimme a dollar for a coffee!
      Chickie Brown: (to Cooper) I dealt with it for five years. You can't take it for four hours?

    • Sal Salinger: Remember the name. Remember the face. He's a reminder as to why we drag our sorry asses of out bed every morning in the service of a city who just doesn't give a damn. Fighting gang crime is like punching water. No matter how hard you hit, you can't seem to leave a dent.

    • Opening Voiceover: Most street cops are passionate cops. Put enough of them together and occasionally those passions explode.

  • NOTES (4)

    • The entire scene at the 7-Eleven starting from the back of the car watching the argument, driving to the 7-Eleven, exiting the car, picking up Ben Sherman, getting back in the car, and leaving was all done in one shot with one camera.

    • The song heard when the gang unit begins shaking down all the gangsters for information on the AK-47 was "As We Enter" by Nas and Damian Marley.

    • The song heard at the end of this episode was "City, Country, City" by War.

    • Production on this episode wrapped November 16, 2010.

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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