1. I love that Ben is screwing up left and right. And I love that Coop is calling him on it, almost purposely finding incidences that will test his presumptions about how people behave. He's constantly reliving his fantasy of saving his mom (who turns out didn't really need a lot of saving, WHAT? I mean, she did, but she initiated the sex act with her husband's drug friend. Who then knocked out her 10 year old's teeth. Holy shit, these writers are outstanding.) Where was I? Right, Ben getting checked. Cooper is completely spot on, too, people lives depend on him reading reality, not living in his fantasy world.
2. I have to say (and I'm guessing every other old school cook reading this thought it, too) that it was WEAK of them to miss the fact that they had that lady pick up a HOT CAST IRON SKILLET with her hand to fling grease in her man's face. UM, NO. She would have screamed like a banshee. Teeny little slip up, and honestly, it's the first one I've ever seen on the show, so they get a pass.
3. REGINA KING. I continue to love that woman and that her whole family/love life/motherhood is her job. Girlfriend takes it seriously (which you want in a detective, am I right?) I liked the potential for a love interest in the coroner dude. He was hot. Also, I love Rose from Lost as her mom.
4. KEVIN ALEJANDRO. Everything about him ever. More about the Big Ending, but first I want to say that his relationship with his wife, his kids, everyone he cares about it so awesome to see. He's cute, he knows it, he's nice, he knows it, and he uses that to be even better at his job. "Ay, Papi." He gets those cute young ladies to trust him, but he never takes it to a creepy place. And my heart ached at the crime scene when he realized the kids were in the car, had seen their father shot, and grabbed them both up in his arms and hugged them.
"Is Daddy dead?"
"I'm sorry, baby, he is."
5. Sammy, Sammy, Sammy. Why the hell aren't you getting in touch with friends in the force to help you get into your DAMN HOUSE and get that bitch out? I mean, I'm ok with women keeping the house in a divorce when they have kids, but if you don't, and you didn't work... No. Sorry. Esp. when you're cheating, move in your boyfriend, and have him drink your husband's expensive Belgian beer (lol.) Oh I just want him to get her out of his hair, but that's why this show is so amazing, it's so honest and real. These horrible people are in our lives, and this show doesn't cheat you by making it pretty. I haaaaaate Tammy, but the show would be less without her. Massive love for Shawn Hatosy and his awesomeness in building this character.
6. The relationship of Sammy and Nate, how they are their own married couple in a way. One pushes, the other pulls, they love and care for each other in the end.
7. THE END. Oh my god. I cannot express how shocked I was, it was all done so well that it felt like it was really happening right then, like you were there, shocked, trying to keep up with what's happening, trying to understand what's happening, then the sickening horror of being outnumbered by people that want to fucking kill you, and make it hurt when they do it, and there's your partner, the guy who took you in, sticks up for you, is a silent support in every stupid thing you do, and he's bleeding out and gang bangers are kicking the shit out of him and you know you only have 13 more bullets in that clip and there are more than 30 guys there, and your buddy just signaled to the copter that everything is fine (four fingers, Code 4, the name of the ep) so you try to pull him to the car and cover him with your own body to take the blows and save him, maybe, and you hold him to you in the car as you race to the hospital, trying to tell yourself that it was just a hit to the back of the head, it wasn't going to kill him, oh my god, please don't die.
And you hear his wife wail in horror in the hospital and you see him trying to hold her, but his grief is too much, and she doesn't care that he's in her bathroom when she wasn't to be, and she doesn't care that he puts his shoes up on her couch, he's the only other person that loved her husband as much as she did and it was just so awful. Shawn Hatosy is a fucking outstanding actor (and good lord, the guy runs fast. LOL, his Twitter has that as his Bio, too.)
I had my jaw dropped the whole time that played out, waiting to hear that he was in a coma, that he was paralyzed... Then the preview for next week and he's dead? I realized that I had been crying the whole time, too, and my cat was trying to head butt me. :( Outstanding acting. Outstanding writing. That whole scene with the gang bangers... Filmed on location, copters over head, some of those guys were probably real gang members, too. That could have gotten scary really quick, from a working on set position. I can only imagine how hard it was to shake that off when they wrapped. Good lord.
The WHOLE EPISODE was a lesson in learning how to deal with unexpected death. And then BOOM. How freaking smart is that? And I still didn't see it coming. I have to say that I'm not a natural slasher (I don't see those 'ships like most of fandom does) but holy crap, raise your hand if you wanted Cooper to grab Ben and plant one on him after yelling? Rawr.
Best show on TV right now, hands down. I'm sad to lose Nate's character, but he'll be on my TV when True Blood comes back, so that help.
EVERY SINGLE ONE OF YOU SHOULD BE WATCHING THIS SHOW. As brunettepet says, it's a Master Class in acting, directing, filmmaking, and writing.