A mature and amusing episode of The Rookie. The mentees are put to the test by their mentors in Episode 14, “Plain Clothes Day”.
This recap of The Rookie Season 1, Episode 14, “Plain Clothes Day”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
Considering I predicted last week that Episode 14 of The Rookie, “Plain Clothes Day”, will be an amusing episode where their mentors observe the trainee rookies, it turned out to be a moderately mature installment in Season 1. Because the rookies have done one hundred shifts, they will be followed by their training officers while on patrol. Apparently, plain clothes day is the toughest day for an officer in training, with many dropping out at this stage. Oh, the drama.
As usual, the normal enthusiastic John (Nathan Fillion) is excited by the prospect. It’s his chance to prove himself – although I’d argue he has proved himself countless times. “Plain Clothes Day” starts with the usual banter we have all become used to, with the training officers mocking their mentees.
We learn about John’s ambitions in Episode 14; as he is patrolling like a kid in a sweet shop, he conveys his dream to Talia (Afton Williamson) that he wants to be a detective in five years, and while that is ambitious, he is desperate to strive for it. Talia remained in the same position, emotionless about his dreams.
“Plain Clothes Day” sees Tim (Eric Winter) play the usual games with Lucy (Melissa O’Neil) while observing his rookie, giving her a letter that he wants her to open at the end of the day. Lucy is shifted by this game playing but tries not to let it deter her patrol. She finds a man perving outside a house on a woman who is getting changed with a video camera, and confidently takes him in. Unfortunately, Tim points out she forgot to bring his car into evidence and highlights that sex offenders work in groups.
The issue for the characters in “Plain Clothes Day” is that they begin to overthink their duties, merely trying to impress the training officer. Lucy, mad at her mistakes, decides to get aggressive, threatening a man who had a complaint about his dog; unfortunately for Lucy, this act of aggression backfired – the man made an official complaint to the police department.
Jackson (Titus Makin Jr.) wants to impress for different reasons; his father. His Dad exceeded expectations on “Plain Clothes Day” so naturally, he wants to break the record. Irony hits him hard, as his entire shift involves helping out in admin tasks and responding to the front desk. His fortunes turn though when he manages to help a grieving husband, making the day worthwhile.
After John bamboozles through his patrol, trying to impress Talia with nonsensical missions, he soon realises that the woman he dismissed earlier in the episode has now been kidnapped by her violent husband. Guilt-ridden, John tactically arrests the man in a hostage situation, with Talia having to help despite being the observer. The lesson for John was to be himself; if he wasn’t being watched by his training officer, he would have taken the woman’s enquiry more seriously.
With an internal investigation hanging over Lucy, Tim decides to confront the man who submitted the complaint, but it worsens the situation. Fortunately for Lucy, she finds blood leaking around his garage door – there’s a dead body inside.
No-one leaves the police force in “Plain Clothes Day”, but it did test the characters in an episode where they took overthinking to a whole new level.
You can check out our thoughts on the next episode by clicking these words.
Daniel Hart is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has operated as Editor-in-Chief since 2017.