The Rookie Season 6 Episode 2 Review: The Hammer

Reviews, Television News

How’s the saying go? “Ain’t nobody fresher than our clique.”

And they sure as heck aren’t as badass, either. The Rookie crew is the epitome of “squad goals,” and I can’t think of a better hour to showcase that than the milestone 100.

Without even trying, The Rookie Season 6 Episode 2 naturally paid homage to itself with an hour that delivered the perfect blend of humor, drama, action, callbacks, and ship goodness that makes the series so addictive and lovable: all smiles, no notes.

But alas, we can’t leave things there, so let’s dive into this fun hour that most likely left true Rookie fans grinning from ear to ear.

As far as weddings go, Nolan and Bailey had a great one.

They managed to nod at some of the drama that can unfold at a Rookie wedding without detracting from the momentous occasion.

Most of the wedding drama was traditional stuff, like the cake showing up at the wrong location or the priest getting stuck in traffic.

It’s the type of fun you expect from a wedding episode, and Bailey Nune and Nolan took it all in stride.

While I’m not the biggest Bailey fan, she was toned down, lovable, and fun, and the references they made (like, of course, she’d want a Janet Jackson Playlist) were the endearing things built into the lore of the series.

She rolls with the punches well regarding John Nolan, his job, his actual family, and his work family.

That makes her a perfect fit for him and this environment. Sometimes, it’s too perfect.

Nolan: How much time before the flight for our honeymoon?
Bailey: Four hours.
Nolan: Plenty of time to take a nap.
Bailey: Yeah.
Nolan: Siri, wake me in an hour.
Siri: I didn’t get that, will you try again?

It was glaring that she didn’t have anyone to serve as her bridesmaids or maid of honor, and the extent of her friends are pretty much just Nolan’s.

Sometimes, it feels like she only revolves around him, and they randomly insert her into things.

But alas, even that wasn’t a nuisance during this hour, and she was genuinely fun to watch.

The Rookie knows how to play to its base.

Skip tracer Randy guest starring in Pete’s stead with Chastity was hilarious. They’re both goofy and quirky enough to provide some laughs.

And the delightfully ridiculous circumstances that had them pawning the wedding ring off to “The Hammer” and Tim Bradford forced to bare-knuckle brawl to retrieve it had me cackling long after the episode concluded.

Our boy gave as good as he got, but boy did he get — get thrown around like a rag doll, that is.

Eric Winter has so much fun in this role that you can see it all over his face during some scenes.

You could tell he was having a ball with this particular plot point, and it amuses me to no end that the character who often leans toward playing the ‘straight man’ in so much of the comedic beats can still shine so much during comedic moments.

As a side note, if you haven’t already, please follow this man on TikTok. He’s a gem if there ever was one, and you will feast on his content.

The humorous moments within this hour made it such a joy to watch and made you reflect on the years they put in giving us this quirky cop dramedy that’s one of a kind.

Chenford engaging in this side quest to retrieve the ring in the middle of their “fight” was comedic gold.

You give us the ring, and we’ll give you a head start.

Chen

I was as entertained and reaching for popcorn as Angela Lopez, the perfect voyeur to Chenford’s relationship woes.

Despite their tension, Tim wouldn’t let Lucy see The Hammer alone, and there wasn’t a question if he was the one to partake in that fight.

Tim wouldn’t let his girl take a beating, and he sure as hell wanted to see how good she’d look at that wedding later.

But the hour also had so much heart and great drama.

Keeping with Chenford, even when they have disagreements, they handle them well.

I didn’t fault Tim for not wanting to rehash everything at work. And he amused me to no end, confiding in the guys at Nolan’s bachelor party, which consisted of arranging flowers.

Even with his lie detector test offer backfiring a bit due to his own subconscious feelings, the gesture was so sweet and romantic.

I’m not upset about these two exchanging their first “I love yous” at the station under these circumstances. It’s so them.

Lucy: Do you love me?
Tim: Yes. I love you.
Lucy: True, hm. Are you ready? Big one. Do you want me to be an undercover detective.
Tim: Yes. Lucy : You liar.
Tim: Huh. I guess we do have a problem.

I can appreciate the idea there isn’t a shadow of a doubt that Tim loves Lucy Chen.

And for a woman who isn’t always certain, especially at this vulnerable point in her career, it’s extraordinary that she got this affirmation in a way that she can’t deny and she can’t second guess.

A part of me is a bit disappointed that Lucy was validated in her fears about Tim, not because they aren’t reasonable but because it’s very evident that she was also projecting a lot on him as well.

The seemingly ditzy but intuitive Chastity called Lucy out on that, and the other Rookie women will (assuming they haven’t already) allude to that as well.

Undercover work is a pressure point for Tim, and Lucy’s pursuit is stirring some things up in him.

I don’t think he’s actively or subconsciously trying to keep Lucy from pursuing it. Still, he is not as upset as she is about any obstacles that come her way and is perfectly fine with any circumstance that postpones this inevitability.

But Lucy is scared, too. She’s afraid that her passion for making detective will affect her relationship. She doesn’t want to lose either one of them.

She also knows undercover work is scary. It’s not just a fear that Tim has reservations about repeating things that happened with Isabel; it’s Lucy’s fear of becoming like Isabel, too, no matter how much she tries to reassure Tim to the contrary.

Related: The Rookie Season Premiere Review: Strike Back

Isabel is an amazing person and cop, and there’s an acknowledgment that what happened to her could happen to anyone.

Lucy is so good undercover that the prospect of her losing herself to it is terrifyingly plausible.

But even with all this, it merely gives Chenford another opportunity to showcase how well they can navigate challenges.

Thus far, they’re managing the communication well.

Chen: Got a minute to talk?
Bradford: Uh, sure. There’s nothing to talk about. You thought I undermined you at a crime scene to stop you from making detective. I explained that I didn’t. Now we’re moving on.
Chen: OK, while I appreciate the efficiency, that’s not actually healthy communication.
Bradford: Wow, that’s not condescending at all.

And it feels like it’s them, side by side, working against and attempting to work through that challenge rather than it coming between them and them working against each other.

It puts them on solid ground and makes me confident in how steady they are. But I also know that they can only begin to tackle this issue properly once they have no choice but to face it head-on when Lucy makes detective and goes undercover.

I loved that a wedding episode also focused on this pairing in its early stages as well as the pairing to which the others can aspire, the Greys.

Luna and Sergeant Grey are a couple with healthy communication skills. We don’t get glimpses of them often, but when we do, it’s lovely.

What’s exciting is learning that through Luna assisting Thorsen, she’s pursuing social work again.

I’m thrilled about her crossing paths with any other characters on calls. It’s the perfect way to incorporate her into the series even more.

It also means another person may be around to keep an eye on Aaron Thorsen.

And the poor guy needs it. He’s not 100% since his shooting, and it’s great that the series isn’t sailing past his mental and emotional recovery.

He’s in such a tough predicament because the shared trauma has him closer than ever to Celina and reliant on her to fulfill so many of his emotional needs.

Harper is right about the dangerous slope they are on with this situation.

Her cautioning Thorsen against being 100% forthcoming with the department therapist may have contributed to him only pouring everything into Celina.

I wonder if she and Angela considered how that advice could backfire.

Harper: You guys are close nowadays.
Celina: Is that a problem?
Harper: It could be. Look, you guys went through a trauma together, and that bonds you and that connection makes every other connection pale in comparison. But you cannot be his sole support system.

Nyla Harper is such a girl’s girl, and I love that so much.

Celina cannot afford to be inextricably linked with Thorsen professionally or personally.

They’re still relatively new at this, and because of the bond they endured together, it too easily can spill out into the field when they’re working together.

They still need to have the boundaries to navigate that possible scenario. And that could easily lead to mistakes or deadly consequences in the field.

However, it could also affect Celina personally if Thorsen only loses himself in her and makes her his only safe space.

It’s confusing, especially if they don’t know what they are to one another, and the lines cross too much.

As it stands, Celina Suarez has no way of knowing if Thorsen’s attempt to kiss her was because of genuine romantic feelings, him mistaking their friendship as something more, or deeply rooted in his current mental and emotional space and her being there for him.

And we have zero indication that Celina’s feelings for Thorsen are anything other than friendship. But that rebuffed kiss was awkward.

Thorsen didn’t handle it well, which won’t do him any favors when trying to get back into the field.

It killed him that he was benched because of his drinking, and he couldn’t go help save Celina.

And because of how flustered she was with Thorsen, she made the poor choice of going to rescue Seth without backup.

I love that even a wedding won’t stop them from going all hands on deck for one of their own, even the groom.

Please don’t die on our wedding night.

Bailey

Celina is basically like Nolan’s work child, so he was ready and rearing to go.

And his team-up with Grey, Chenford, Angela, and Harper was enough to excite you.

Did Nolan really just casually kill a man on his wedding night to a rap needle-drop?

And the startled laugh that erupted when he posed as one of the baddies, hoodie and all, with that badass swagger, and just hurled a guy out the window couldn’t be contained.

Related: Chicago PD Season 11 Episode 6 Spoilers: Is “Old Voight” Back?

Celina got in her licks, too.

The crew whooping ass while still in their partying clothes was a riot and so quintessentially The Rookie.

But the hour was the quintessence of the series, which is why it was so fun.

Champagne and Chit Chat:

  • Lisseth Chavez was a vision in that dress. Whew, it’s no wonder Thorsen was tempted to kiss Celina.
  • Harper and Lopez talking about their outfits with their husbands being over it was the cutest. They are the best-married besties ever.
  • James was the MVP for that Playlist. Everyone was getting down on the dance floor to the perfect blend of R&B and throwback hip-hop… you love to hear it.
  • Oscar suing Nolan is a choice. I love that they squeezed in the theory that Monica may still be working for Elijah.
  • Bradford’s brawl will live in my head rent-free on loop.
  • The opener with the band that Nolan loathes was hilarious.

Over to you, Rookie Fanatics.

Did you love the 100th episode?

Do you think Chenford will still have issues with her going undercover?

Who do you think is next in line to get married?

Sound off below.

The Rookie airs Tuesdays at 9/8c on ABC. You can stream the following day on Hulu.

Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. She is an insomniac who spends late nights and early mornings binge-watching way too many shows and binge-drinking way too much tea. Her eclectic taste makes her an unpredictable viewer with an appreciation for complex characters, diverse representation, dynamic duos, compelling stories, and guilty pleasures. You’ll definitely find her obsessively live-tweeting, waxing poetic, and chatting up fellow Fanatics and readers. Follow her on X.

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