Terriers, “Agua Caliente”: Cartel grab.

“Agua Caliente” provided a nice little follow-up to “Change Partners,” showing us what happened to Britt’s old partner, Ray, whom we assumed had been picked up by the cops at the end of that episode. Turns out that would have been too neat and tidy. And in TV Land, neat and tidy is no good. You know what else is no good? ‘Neat & Tidy.’ A CBS buddy cop show which ran from 1983 to 1983. But maybe I’m getting off topic…

So what did happen? It’s the question fans have been asking, and all revealed after some of Ray’s drug cartel friends take Brit and throw him in the trunk of a car. Before the cops could pick him up, Ray skipped town and fell in with some shady characters south of the border. I know, I’m not really narrowing things down, am I? I keed, I keed. But seriously, if you live in Mexico, you probably work for a drug cartel. Anyway, while out on a “run,” (drug slang for a drug deal) Ray’s pulled over by the cops and books it, leaving the precious drugs behind to be taken in and bagged as evidence by what’s apparently the only incorruptible police station in the entire country. How much did Ray lose, you ask? Well, if you guessed a lot, you’d be wrong. Ray lost what had to have been three or four small packages of cocaine. It really didn’t look like very much, but one of the cartel bigwigs tells Britt that its street value was about $80,000, so who am I to argue? Anyway, Britt’s got to help Ray get it back or else they’ll kill Katie, who they’re following back in Ocean Beach.

The point of the episode seemed to be to provide some closure to the Katie’s-cheating-ways storyline. After spending weeks skipping class and dodging her professor, Katie’s forced back in the classroom to take her final. In her rush to get out of there, she leaves behind her cellphone, which is just the excuse her professor needs to drop by. But of course, when he does, he’s taken hostage by the Mexican thug staking Katie out, which is a problem most of us have probably had to deal with before. Luckily, Hank, Britt and Gustafson get there just in time to save them. Hank gets shot in the arm, but all in all it’s a small price to pay.

At the end of the episode, Hank, laid out on an ambulance gurney, has some stern words for Katie’s professor. Hank says that if he ever catches wind of him sleeping with another one of his students, Hank will make sure his wife finds out, along with every veterinary school from here to blah blah blah. Now, why would Hank make such a nasty threat? To protect Katie, and by extension, her relationship with Britt, right? It’s one of those situations in which the answer is so obvious that we fail to question the logic behind it. Katie’s a big girl, and it’s not like she fell on her professor’s penis on accident. If anyone needs a talking to, maybe it’s her. It’s just possible that she’s hurting her relationship with Britt even more than her professor. A crazy theory, I know. But there you go.

What I liked most about the episode was how much we got to see Gustafson, a character who could probably hold his own show, and just might get the chance now that Terriers’ chances of coming back for another season are almost nonexistent. His dynamic with Hank is very different from Britt’s, but that may be what I liked about it. Hank treats Britt too much like his little buddy, but it’s clear that he and Gustafson are on equal footing. Well, almost equal. Gustafson probably considers himself to be a little above Hank’s station in life. See? We’ve got conflict. That’s 13 on the air right there. Anyway, it felt like the show actually got a little better with Hank and Britt split up. Odd. Especially, for a show whose chemistry between its two leads is one of its biggest selling points.


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