The Shield Forums

FX (ended 2008)

"Family Meeting" (S07E13) Official Discussion

  • Avatar of Greenlit829

    Greenlit829

    [81]Nov 27, 2008
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    RamboPSuperman wrote:

    I am one of the viewers who has been lucky enough to have been with this show since the very beginning, and I am in awe. This final season has been so tense it was almost unbearable, and now it has been brought to a conclusion that still continues to deepen the characters, the themes, everything. Vic Mackey is still an ambiguous character, but while he's revealed himself to be capable of a degree of brutality we've never seen before, he's also showed himself to be even weaker and more vulnerable than we could have ever imagined him being. He has finally ruined everyone who ever shared a bond with him... and none of it makes any sense, or is remotely satisfying to anyone. All that he's left with is a great sense of waste, and weakness, and cruelty... and at the same time, he can't even stop himself from trying to get back into the action that caused his own ruin. There were moments during this season that you got the impression he was harbouring doubts about his actions, and there was always a chance that he would turn back from vengeance and do something redeeming... but instead he followed his own brutality until it completely destroyed everything he ever had, and still he refuses to admit that he was wrong. Shane's final actions in particular are telling-- he murdered his own family in a cold and selfish way, but at the same time, even he is more sympathetic than Mackey. His suicide note makes one think of a confused child... he was bound to his own evil by stupidity and weakness, not by any sense of justice... but the difference between himself and Vic was that he had the sense to admit that he was lost. Ronnie's fate fit his misdeeds, but at the same time, the fact that he would be meeting it alone-- after seven years of having no real life but that of his role on the team--was somehow horrifying. He is going to prison without any support at all, and instead of confronting him or trying to help him in prison, Vic turns his back on him and tries not to think about it while he's being dragged into the cage. In the past, Vic might have promised him special treatment, or worked out a deal where he wouldn't have to face being a cop in prison without support... but now that Vic is completely powerless, there's nothing he can do. Throughout the episode, I kept hoping that Vic would do something selfless, show some trace of responsibility or try to protect his team... but he didn't. He was forced to admit that he had become a pathetic, powerless outcast with nothing left but a few pictures on his desk, a superior who will do everything in her power to demean and declaw him, and a soulless routine that will inevitably ruin his body and his mind-- not to mention all the guilt and shame of everything he has done. At least Ronnie can survive on the anger of having been betrayed, and having preserved his dedication to the team... Vic doesn't have that at all. Everything in his life fell apart for a perfectly logical reason, and he has no one to blame but himself. The worst of it is, you get the impression that he has no idea how to deal with it. It's not something he can beat up, or torture, or kill. He only has two options-- live with it, or kill himself. And after seeing Tina's first anniversary party, with everyone happy and making light of things, you realize that no one else cares.

    Over the past two seasons, while watching the descent into anger and vengeance, you really get the sense that this conclusion has been carefully thought out and planned, and now it's been executed brilliantly. Kudos to everyone involved with this show-- it's an incredible work of art.

    Well said. I have been with this show since the beginning too. And I agree, Vic did deserve everything he got. But I still can't help but feel a little bad for him.

    Because as corrupt and selfish as this man is, there have also been times when he has shown great selflessness toward his team and family. There are lines he will not cross. Vic doesn't want to get rich or rise in the department or become the goddam mayor. He just wants to be out there, risking his life, living on the edge, and locking up the vile scum of the Earth. That's all he wants! He doesn't care if he gets paid a s*itty cop's salary and has to live in a small crappy apartment. THAT'S why I still respect him. True, his methods may not be the most moral or ethical, but hasn't this show always been about shades of grey? You can't completely hate a character, nor can you completely support and like them.

    I DESPISE Vic for betraying Ronnie, killing a brother cop, corrupting Shane and Lem, and a dozen other bad things as much as you. They all deserved much better. But at the same time I respect his bravery, shrewdness, street smarts, and BURNING desire to be a cop and make the streets safer. So I can't exactly stand up and cheer, "YES!! VIC MACKEY IS GOING TO ROT IN CUBICLE HELL!!! YEEEHAWWW!!".........I do feel somewhat depressed.

    The Shield. The perfect shade of grey. Hats off to it.

    Edited on 11/27/2008 6:42am
    Edited 3 total times.
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  • Avatar of therock0603

    therock0603

    [82]Nov 27, 2008
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    crash613x wrote:

    Not to stir the conspiracy pot, but everyone keeps saying that the gun was in there and he was just taking it home "at the end of the day..." Why didn't he take it home at lunch when he went to change clothes? Obviously he had gone home to change.

    BTW I believe, like some above, the smile was indicating that he knew he'd get thru this.

    Sucks for Ronnie, hated to see that happen to him.

    Why would he take it home at lunch? I own a gun and have a permit to carry it. If I worked somewhere where I could take my gun, I'd keep it with me until the end of the day too. There'd be no reason to take it home earlier. The same goes for Vic. He's been carrying a gun all these years and he probably feels naked without it. Olivia didn't have a problem with him having his gun at work as long as it was locked up, so why not keep it with him until the end of the day?

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  • Avatar of cdnirene

    cdnirene

    [83]Nov 27, 2008
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    He just wants to be out there, risking his life, living on the edge, and locking up the vile scum of the Earth.

    That's the way I read Vic's character. I always thought his excuse that he was doing it all for his family, was just that - an excuse. As far as I could see, he never did anything special for his family and really preferred to work (or his pursue his scheming) than spend more time with his kids.

    I did laugh at the thought of the office lights going off at 6:00 p.m. Salaried employees usually don't get paid overtime and I've never heard of an employer discouraging voluntary overtime by turning off the lights so early.

    Edited on 11/27/2008 9:56am
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  • Avatar of pete_petrelli

    pete_petrelli

    [84]Nov 27, 2008
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    Man that was THE perfect ending possible, they delivered a great finale that gives you closure and in the same way they left The Shield with a lot of possibilities for a future movie or tv special.

    What the hell was that Shane offing himself and his family like that.. that´s great writing man... That scene with Mara and Shane in the bathroom showed us she couldnt go on the run with him, and any other possibility ended with them in jail with the family torn apart... i think the ending was going to be very different if it wasnt for that sick phone call... Shane lost his leverage and Vic talk about visiting Jackson, that was the trigger for the family suicide, (amazing writing) and to get back Shane tells Vic Corine betrayed him and he realizes the mistake he made when he cut Ronnie out of the deal to save Corine.. He couldn´t know and he had to protect his autistic childs, so you can see he screwed Ronnie only coz he had too and he felt really bad 4 it.

    I seen people saying here they didnt closed up on Dutch and the kid, that´s BS, Dutch got called 3 times and Rita was very angry at him as she told she didn´t called.. The kid called Ducth, offed his own mom, burned her clothes on Dutch´s trash can to frame him, how much more do you need? Dutch was right on the money, he will eventually crack that kid and he did stoped a bunch of murders from ever happening. Still got game.

    Sad that Claudette is dying, that scene that she fires Dutch is too show the effect of the drugs on her, plus Vic´s immunity.. Fun to see that Julien still have his inner and very gay demons and he will live with that forever. Danny´s finale was earlier, but she was smart to run away from Vic, she saw the nightmare, too bad Corine took that long to realize it, but now they have a shot of happiness without people trying to kill them to hurt Vic. Funny Aceveda smiling to the cameras, he´s going to be a company yes man jelly fish as mayor obviously, won´t get $hit done... I wanted to see the blowjob photo in the news, but that´s not how it works on real life and if The Shield proven us anything is that art can imitate life..

    And Olivia!! What classy b1tch! Shawn Ryan fooled us into thinking Vic was going to bone her, in fact he did "boned" her with that cop-killing confession and she to reciprocate made all the arranjements to make his life a living hell.. No family, no street work, just a deskjob that for us bloggers and Ronnie is a great job but for Vic its prison.. Tastefull!! I bet in the end Vic would rather spend 3 years in jail surviving than in the prison-cubicle.. Too bad Ronnie is going for life not only 3 years, both would have a ball trading places..

    Vic finale couldn´t be better suited, he´s the alpha male shark that will survive anything, no matter how many inner demons he adds up on his conscience. He didnt knew at the time but that conversation on the phone with Shane was the trigger on the whole family suicide, i´ve replayed Vic´s looking at the photos and shoving his guilty inside soooo many times, Michael Chiklis was unbeliavable, what a tallented actor.

    The whole cast made such a great work from writing to acting to camera action that it is impossible for me not to put The Shield as best tv show ever.

    Congratulations and thank you very much for some of the most awesome character connections i´ve had in my life.

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  • Avatar of KurtPikachu2001

    KurtPikachu2001

    [85]Nov 27, 2008
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    Great, powerful finale! The only thing I didn't like was Ron having to go to prison. Why couldn't he hve just made a deal and told about the one-niners and just get witness protection? Liked how Dutch finally got Lloyd. Felt bad about Claudette. You kind of figured since Shane was caught between a rock and a hard place he was going to kill himself and his family. Looks like Corrine and her kids are now living in New England, and Vic will spend the rest of his life being Olivia's slave. Never to work as a cop again.

    All in all, a great ending to a great show. I thought at the end on the closing credits, it would show the characters faces and under it an outcome of what happened to them. I give it 5/5!
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  • Avatar of LII2

    LII2

    [86]Nov 27, 2008
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    Actually Corinne and the kids are actually now living in Illinois, not in New England nor California
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  • Avatar of 0hBoy

    0hBoy

    [87]Nov 27, 2008
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    tgd_Lazarus wrote:
    I expected this ending to happen, although I thought all week Vic was gonna off himself. The ending was just something we've seen on the show all these seasons, what goes around comes around. Also, I have to admit, I almost shed a tear when I saw Mara & Jackson dead, it was a bit too disturbing for me.


    dont' agree, i shed nothing when they died - i had ALL THE TIME an aversion against Mara, from the time, when Shane first time turned off the strike team, for Mara.
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  • Avatar of LII2

    LII2

    [88]Nov 27, 2008
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    You have to feel sorry for both Jackson and the unborn Francis Abigail, they both didn't deserve to die. Mara had put a lot of stupid ideas into Shane from the very beginning, I always thought there was something mentally wrong with her from the start. However as far as Corrine was involved she was thinking stupid, Vic would never kill the mother of his kids, for any type of reason.

    As violent as he may seem, Vic isn't merely that crazy as to go as far and kill her. Besides the kids need her and he knows that.
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  • Avatar of therock0603

    therock0603

    [89]Nov 27, 2008
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    By the way, did the witness protection guy that took the Mackey family to their new home remind anyone of Kavanaugh? To me, he looked a lot like him, talked like him, and even stood kinda like him. Maybe it was just me, but I saw a big similarity.
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  • Avatar of Greenlit829

    Greenlit829

    [90]Nov 27, 2008
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    No, that was Clark Johnson of The Wire and Homicide Life on the Street fame. Great actor.
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  • Avatar of Widget_

    Widget_

    [91]Nov 27, 2008
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    numberonecubsfa wrote:
    Sigh....as intense as that was....why did they not wrap up the Dutch storyline?

    I also asked myself that. Maybe it was just to tell us that there is some evil on this earth that not even in a fictional TV show can be proven guilty and punished. The whole story arc left a very unsatisfying feeling for me, no closure and no satisfaction from "the bad guy getting it". I like it for the exact same reason though.

    Quote"What was the point of introducing the 'radical mayoral candidate' in this finale? What became of Acaveda and the whole bomb threat stuff at the very end?"

    It really seemed sort of rushed but for me it was obviously implied that Aceveda had something to do with this guys death. People seem to forget what an egomaniac A-Hole this guy is.

    Quote"Why have it end with the notion that Vic is going to go out and do something as opposed to resigning to being alone and miserable like he deserves? That aside all....Shane's end....tragic, but not unfitting, given where his actions led to this point. Poor Ronnie...he was far from innocent, but he didn't get a chance to get out and got screwed by Vic.... But like....did they leave open stories in case there's a tv movie to close it out or something?"

    Maybe it is just me, but it felt as if Vic realized in the end that he truly had absolutely nothing left, no friends, no family, not even real enemies. I really think it was mildly implied he was about to shoot himself or get himself killed in some way.

    Overall I did like the finale a lot, I think it would have been better to do it with a 2 stand-alone episodes instead of this one "big closure finale" but I am satisfied.

    I just hope they let it rest and dont bring it back for dubious reasons or make movie.

    Edited on 11/27/2008 8:22pm
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  • Avatar of therock0603

    therock0603

    [92]Nov 27, 2008
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    Greenlit829 wrote:
    No, that was Clark Johnson of The Wire and Homicide Life on the Street fame. Great actor.

    No, I know it wasn't Forest Whitaker. I was asking if the guy reminded anyone of Kavanaugh, not if it was him.

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  • Avatar of Stingseven

    Stingseven

    [93]Nov 28, 2008
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    Just a couple of notes of correction.

    1) When the HR lady told Vic about the lights being turned out at 6 PM, she never said he was discouraged from working overtime. In fact, she told him to call a certain extension if he was working late. 2) Some also mentioned Vic never did anything special for his family. Vic did do some arm twisting to get Michael into a special school for autistic kids and the Armenian Drug Train heist began as an effort to get money to pay for the school (at least that was what Vic was telling the others). He also showed extreme affection and concern for his oldest daughter. For all his faults, Vic did love his family.

    3) Corinne was absolutely right to be horrified by what Vic might do if he found out she was working with the police against him. Would he actually kill her? We don't know, like mentioned above, he loved his family, but we never thought he would let Ronnie rot in prison either, did we? The sociopath in Vic might decide she deserved to die for putting him in jeopardy, who knows?

    4) As someone pointed out, Olivia asked why Vic had a gun. Vic said it was his personal gun (remember, he wasn't a cop for awhile before he reported to work for ICE). She told him he had to lock it up or leave it at home. He locked it up in his drawer. Nothing unusual about that. 5) Claudette did tell the young killer that they found his mother's burned clothes. It was one of the first things she said when she took over the interrogation from Dutch. The young killer then worked up some tears and asked, "is she dead?" in response, if you remember. Claudette then said there's no murder without a body.

    6) The only way the Hoggins story could have been relevent is if Acevada did have him killed. Note, Acevada got shown up at the church and we never saw Hoggins alive again. I also note how Claudette remarked, "I'm sure you won't let an election stop you" in reference to Acevada's ambition. It kind of nodded to Acevada being responsible, though it was never clearly spelled out. Just wanted to keep the discussion on the right path before misinformation starts to take over.
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    mik_64

    [95]Nov 28, 2008
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    [QUOTE=5) Claudette did tell the young killer that they found his mother's burned clothes. It was one of the first things she said when she took over the interrogation from Dutch. The young killer then worked up some tears and asked, "is she dead?" in response, if you remember. Claudette then said there's no murder without a body. [/QUOTE]

    Just watched it again and I am sure Claudette only says they found his mothers clothes with no mention of them being burnt

    Edited on 11/28/2008 3:59am
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    DwyaneBradders

    [97]Nov 28, 2008
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    Did Ronnie actually get screwed? When the case goes to court, how much evidence have they got to link him with all the things that Vic said they'd done. In the end it would come to one word against another and surley Vic, who admitted to killing a cop would be deemed less trustworthy...
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    bscekic

    [98]Nov 28, 2008
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    DwyaneBradders wrote:
    Did Ronnie actually get screwed? When the case goes to court, how much evidence have they got to link him with all the things that Vic said they'd done. In the end it would come to one word against another and surley Vic, who admitted to killing a cop would be deemed less trustworthy...

    Well, they already got him for aiding and abetting, which is enough to end his career and put him in jail. Everything Vic said to the Feds can serve as a starting point for an investigation. Having in mind the number of things the Strike team did, I'm sure there is something that can be tied to Ronnie, especialy since Vic must give all the additional info they ask him to, like where the evidence might be found etc...

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    darizaz

    [99]Nov 28, 2008
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    so sad it ended ..i won't be watching TV shows any more...neither would top THE SHIELD
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    therock0603

    [100]Nov 28, 2008
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    Anyone notice how Corrine didn't really roll over on Vic until she thought there was a possibility that she could get in trouble? She knew he had been doing crooked stuff ever since the first season, though she might not have known exactly what. But she was fine with that as long as Vic was using his influence to the family's advantage or bringing home bags of money. But once she thought she might get in trouble, she was all about helping the police. It wasn't about doing the right thing for her.
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