The Rookie Season 1 Episode 12 Recap – “Heartbreak”

By Daniel Hart
Published: February 13, 2019 (Last updated: December 23, 2023)
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The Rookie episode 12 Heartbreak recap


“Heartbreak” labors the Valentine’s Day theme, almost making Episode 12 stand still, in the least exciting chapter of The Rookie so far.

This recap of The Rookie Season 1, Episode 12, “Heartbreak”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.

Maybe it’s because throughout my adult life I’ve struggled to be romantic, but The Rookie Episode 12, “Heartbreak”, did not even tickle a single heartstring. The drama cop series celebrates love, heartbreak, and relationships in a Valentine’s Day-themed episode.

As usual, John Nolan (Nathan Fillion) is a calamity waiting to happen, and in “Heartbreak” he manages to irritate Sergeant Wade Grey (Richard T. Jones) by accidentally turning up to the same restaurant where he’s enjoying a date with his wife. My ponderous mind wondered if people still go out for Valentine’s Day after years of marriage? My cynical mind pictured jobs and kids, and not having time for mid-week dates based on a commercialised concept.

Most of Episode 12 is John trying to not feel sorry for himself before Valentine’s Day, making me shout at the screen that he’s a fully grown adult, and he should put on his big boy pants and realize it’s just another day. But unfortunately I do not write the script, and instead, his invasive friend decides to host an anti-Valentine’s Day party at John’s own house! His friend has zero boundaries, claiming it is to support John.

While party plans are in progress, John has to explain to his annual flower company that he does not need to send roses to his wife anymore because he is no longer married. He gets all gushy, explaining “at least we raised a good kid,” which is met with silence. Yes, even the flower company doesn’t care.

According to Sergeant Wade Grey, Valentine’s Day is the most dangerous time of the year because heartbreaks are dangerous. At this point, I exhaled a bored sigh, wondering why on earth The Rookie trying so damn hard to theme this episode to the absolute max. Grey also reveals in “Heartbreak” that Tim Bradford (Eric Winter) is off on a personal day, and everyone is wondering why. I mean Christ, I wonder why the man wanted a day off on the soppiest day of the year after learning his wife is a drug addict, involved herself in gang warfare and is now getting clean in rehab! It made an interesting story though, as Tim and his wife iron out some unresolved issues.

Anyway, let’s skip to the usual bullshit The Rookie throws at us with various scenarios. Angela Lopez (Alyssa Diaz) and Jackson West (Titus Makin Jr.) end up trying to help a man with supposed dementia but later find out they have accidentally put themselves in the company of a serial killer. Jackson, weak as always, gets palmed off by the killer, leaving Lopez to track the man down and arrest him. In other news, John saves a woman from electric shock who spends all episode stalking him, before overdosing at his dead anti-Valentine’s Day party that nobody can be bothered attending.

A lot of other s**t happens, but “Heartbreak” was a weak chapter for The Rookie, which is a shame, because it was slowly becoming the favorite part of my week of TV.

TV, TV Recaps
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