“The Bridge” recap (1.13): The Crazy Place

Last week’s episode of The Bridge felt so right. It opened the doors to new storylines and a new focus, and had just the right amounts of pain and redemption to make for satisfying “to be continued.” In comparison, this week’s finale felt rather sluggish and anti-climactic.

The episode opens with a car speeding down a desert road.  Inside another waiting car is the crooked cop and an injured Eva. When the car pulls over, a mystery man gets out and approaches. The crooked cop asks for help, insisting that the girl needs medical attention. The mystery man in turn hands him a gun, instructs the cop to get rid of her, then speeds back off into the open desert. He may be crooked, but the cop hesitates, and does not follow orders.

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On Lt. Wade’s ranch, he’s wrangling cattle like a man half his age. Through the clouds of kicked up dust, Sonya watches him. Wade suggests that Sonya give his prize horse a good brushing, which feels like a familiar ritual for them. It made me imagine Wade working with a young Sonya, trying to help her get in touch with the world outside of herself.  Wade begins to tell Sonya that he plans to sell the horse, but she interrupts him with questions about his possible retirement.

He’s not ready yet, much to his wife Carmen’s displeasure. The papers sit on his desk, which comforts Sonya. She lets him know that she wants to work on the Dead Girls of Juárez. He warns her that the case is not in their jurisdiction, but she’s done her homework. Wade tells his protégée that for fifteen years, law enforcement on both sides of the border have been working to solve the crimes to no avail. Sonya is not swayed, and knows if she and Marco team up, they could make a difference. Marco for his part has gotten himself dressed and ready to go back to work. He holsters his gun, and says a silent goodbye to Gus’s prayer card.

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Outside the Juárez police station, women stand holding up pictures of their missing loved ones. Linder is there too, clutching a picture of Eva as the Captain breezes by. When he gets in, he snarls at Celia to have the women removed.

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Greed makes for strange bedfellows. Charlotte, Ray and Cesar meet up with shady lawyer Monte in the prep kitchen of a restaurant. He will be pulling a Saul Goodman, helping launder Charlotte’s cut of the tunnel money into a fake business. She asks his advice about having dinner with Fausto Galvan, and he encourages her to keep him happy. Ray, he of the occupational “muff diving,” raises objections when he hears about Monte’s cut. Charlotte tells him that if he doesn’t like it, he can get the hell out. He smacks her ass like he’s probably done a thousand times before, but this time Charlotte drops the gauntlet. “Show me respect,” she demands with eyes cold as steel. The kind of steel you stab someone in the heart with. “You work for me now.”  She is nearly unrecognizable now from the woman rushing her dying husband across the bridge in the first episode.

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At the El Paso station, Sonya is doing what she does best. Sleuthing. Marco walks in and Sonya’s face lights up. She may not always be able to communicate or empathize with others the way they would like, but her skills of intuition are incredible. We all shine in our own ways. Marco has news about Eva. He tells Sonya about his conversation with Celia, and how she spotted Eva at the station. There are many layers to this, Marco cautions. Dangerous layers.

Frye has recovered enough to go back to work, and he sits in his car working up the nerve to go inside. The shot is reminiscent of the scene in the pilot when Frye was trapped inside his car with a bomb. This time, nothing holds him back but himself. Adriana knocks on his window, and she’s bearing cupcakes! She tells him that it’s a big deal that he’s back to work and they should celebrate. Frye just wants to dive right into some juicy investigating. His boss however has other ideas and assigns him a puff piece on an old resident of El Paso. He nearly dry heaves with frustration. When they arrive at the interviewee’s home, they notice an older woman lying on the floor. Adriana busts into the house like bulldozer, and runs to the woman. She takes her pulse, and declares that she’s dead. Frye, still wheelchair bound, investigates the house. He opens a door to find it stacked to the ceiling with money. Like, Walter White amounts of cash.

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