Authors Note: Apologies for the lateness of this recap/review. My television service went down during part of the episode during the premiere and I missed the first 12 minutes of the episode. I wanted to give you a review that is up to my usual standard so I had to wait until I had time to view the episode on the CW site.
This week’s episode of Walker, “Cry Uncle”, didn’t involve nearly as much crying as I thought it would. But after the rollercoaster that was “Just Desserts” and the nail-biting nerves over whether the Walkerverse will be renewed or not, I think we deserved a small break from the angst.
This week’s plotlines were mostly isolated so I’m going to cover each plot individually.
Let’s start with Cassie and Trey and the Mystery of the Missing Detective.
We start of with Trey finishing his morning workout at the Ranger HQ gym. James approaches him with an update on Abeline and Walker. She will be out of the hospital that day and Cordell is taking a few days off to handle family matters. In the meantime, Trey will need to serve with Cassie on their newest case. But Trey won't be going to her for the details; he'll be filling her in. Trey seems unsettled by this development but James continues regardless.
A famous detective personality Victor Ziff has gone missing. With no warning he turned his phone off and dropped off into the void. Meanwhile, several bank accounts have been drained of billions of dollars and Ziff's wife is surrounded by a wall of lawyers. Troopers suspect fowl play and Madison Ziff is suspect number 1. Trey is ready to take on the challenge but, before he leaves, James gives Trey specific instructions. Things have been a little lax around HQ lately so, from now on, Trey is to keep him informed on everything happening in the field and run all his moves by HQ before acting. Trey agrees to this and, again, seems a little unsettled by James' words.
Cassie joins them shortly after and James curtly greets her before walking away. Confused, Cassie asks Trey what's going on and he says he'll fill her in on the way.
Cassie and Trey head to Madison’s workplace at a college campus to speak with her directly. While they wait, they discuss each other’s respective love lives (or lack thereof) with a lot of ribbing on both sides. But their banter is cut short as Madison arrives with one of her lawyers.
Side note: I would also like to know how things went with Cassie and Kevin on Thanksgiving.
Madison explains to them that she has no idea what happened to her husband. She hasn’t seen him in a while and they’re actually in the process of getting divorced. She doesn't know what he’s been up to or what’s going on with the accounts. Her lawyer steps in before she can say much more, but she leaves them with a parting message: her husband wasn’t the man they think he was.
Trey latches onto the past tense and thinks Madison may be covering up Victor’s death. He also texts James to update him on the situation, which Cassie finds odd as he never asked her to do that.
Continuing with their casework, they go to Victor’s office to get a look at his financial situation. $7 billion dollars going missing is nothing to sneeze at and it’s definitely related to his disappearance. His assistant is happy to open Victor’s desk computer for them and seems especially worried for her boss.
Side note: Anyone else want that touchscreen desk?
Cassie goes through Victor’s finances and finds out he owns a lot of property around the city, mostly million-dollar properties. He could host his own house-flipping show with how much buying and selling he does. But there’s one property that sticks out: an old warehouse that he bought cheap and can’t sell because of structural damage. Trey, still stuck on Madison’s words, thinks it would make a good place to hide a body. Cassie seems to disagree but gets distracted by a call from Cordell.
Cassie steps aside to take the call and asks him what’s going on with James. She’s noticed him being really cold lately. Maybe he suspects them lying about peeking in the evidence case? Cordell knows James wanted to talk to him about something at Thanksgiving but they haven’t spoken much beyond that. They don’t get to talk much more since Cassie has a case to solve and Cordell has kids to wrangle.
On their way out of Victor’s office, Cassie suggests they drive by and check out the warehouse. Trey is skeptical and thinks they should tell James first in case they need a warrant. Cassie dismisses his concern, saying that there’s nothing wrong with driving by. Besides, she’s the superior officer; if anything goes wrong, she’ll take the blame. Trey doesn’t seem all that reassured but follows her lead anyway.
When they arrive at the warehouse, Cassie receives more financial information. It turns out that Victor had some tax debt and that he’s recently been making a series of payments that end up in the country of Moldova. Trey still thinks Madison is responsible, that she was trying to get her cut of Victor’s money before good ol’ Uncle Sam got his hands on it. But his line of thought is interrupted by the sound of gunshots coming from the warehouse. Cassie is out in a flash and Trey has to follow her before he can send word to James. He does put out a call for backup, though.
They follow the sound of gunshots into the back of the warehouse, only to find that it’s Victor playing a video game.
They arrest Victor, because even though faking your death isn’t a crime, tax evasion is. Victor tries to appeal to their romantic side with the story of his love for his Moldovan girlfriend, but it fails pretty spectacularly and he’s led away in cuffs.
Back at the office, Trey and Cassie are discussing their case-well-solved when James comes in and very tersely asks Trey what the hell he was thinking, disobeying a direct order like that? Trey was supposed to keep him updated and run everything by him first, not run off on his own like a vigilante. Trey tries to defend himself and Cassie tries to take responsibility, but James shuts them both down. He then says that maybe making Trey a ranger was a mistake and walks out, leaving everyone in the office very uncomfortable.
Side Note: First of all- James, how dare you? Secondly, I don’t think we’ve seen him discipline even Cordell this hard, especially not with an audience. I wonder if he’s facing pressure from the upper brass, or is paranoid over not having control of his rangers in the field…. Not that that makes this behavior acceptable, but I would understand.
Up next, let’s talk about Abby and Bonham and the Horrors of Mortality.
The episode picks up right where 3.07 left off, with Abeline collapsed on the ground. Cordell and August spot her first as they approach the main ranch house for a major apology from August. Cordell sends August to get his grandfather while he checks on his mother, who is unresponsive. Bonham rushes to her side when he sees her and begs her to open her eyes while Cordell sends August to get the truck to take her to the hospital.
When they arrive, Cordell explains the situation to the doctor as Abby is carted away. Bonham stays by his wife's side for as long as he can but ultimately the doctor has to put him in the waiting room.
Stella and Liam join the sad trio a few moments later, both worried about Abeline. Hugs are shared between family members- except August, who sits awkwardly to the side until Cordell invites him to the party.
The doctor informs the family that Abby had a minor stroke but will most certainly recover. Bonham then visits Abby in her room and she starts reminiscing about the first time they went to the hospital together after Bonham made some undercooked spaghetti and meatballs. Bonham doesn't want to have that kind of conversation; he'd rather think about a future with her than dwell in the past like they don't have one.
Side note: Liam and Abby talking about Ben was really sweet. This show knows how to make my heart melt.
After Abby returns home, Bonham goes overboard on keeping her healthy. He gets rid of any and all foods in the house that contain salt and gives her compression socks to help with her blood pressure, among other things. Abby tries to discuss the topic of updating their will but Bonham won’t even hear it. He’d much rather think about keeping her alive than worry about her being dead.
This behavior continues, much to Abby’s annoyance. Bonham is worried about her stressing herself with the housework and not taking care of herself. He even goes as far as to research a holistic vitamin regimen. Abby appreciates that he cares but she’s not going to stop living her life just because of one little stroke. She understands that it’s a serious condition, but she can peel potatoes without having a doctor on standby.
She also points out that he’s being a little hypocritical given how he handled his cancer diagnosis. Between him not telling her about it in the first place and then refusing to get treatment afterward, it’s a little ridiculous that he would start playing Health Guru now. She again presses him about the will.
Bonham agrees to back off on the health stuff, but he won’t talk about the will. The fear of losing her is still fresh and he’s not ready to think about a life without her just yet.
Later, Bonham catches her folding laundry (one shirt at a time thank you very much) and tells her that he made a healthy alternative for dinner. Abby, tired of his nonsense, tells him that he’s stressing her out with all the health stuff and she’s tired of it. She loves him and she appreciates the concern but he’s pushing her patience. He walks out of the room sullenly and, feeling bad for blowing up on him, she follows him to apologize.
Abby makes it to the dining room to find a simple romantic dinner set up with Liam serving wine. Bonham tells her that he listened when she was talking earlier. He admits that he’s just afraid of losing her and has been ever since they got married. But he promised to stand by her sides in both good and bad times and pretending that bad times won’t come isn’t doing either of them any good. So, he’ll lay off on the health nut stuff, and maybe they can talk about the will tomorrow. But, for now, they have whole wheat pasta and low sodium marinara, with meatballs made by Liam.
Side note: Bonline is the only ship in this show that has any rights. I love them your honor.
Now it’s time to talk about the main event of the episode: The Sibling Reunion Extravaganza!
After Abby’s return home, August makes the time to apologize to her for how he's been acting lately, especially for what he said at Thanksgiving. He feels responsible for sending her to the hospital and Bonham's behavior around him has only compounded that. Abeline quickly assures him that what happened to her was not his fault. She knows he's a good person and that he's just been struggling lately. He'll find his way back to himself eventually; everyone says things they regret. They hug it out and August goes to put away their tea.
Next, Cordell and Abby have a talk. Cordell made sure that August apologized first and foremost and she can rest assured that that boy's punishment is far from over. Abby scoffs at the idea of further punishment and suggests that he take the kids on a road trip to Dallas instead, to visit dear old Uncle Willy. She wants to see him again and hopes that Cordell can convince him to come down for a visit. It's Cordell's turn to scoff now; Abby has made repeated attempts to connect with him over the years and he's refused contact. Maybe it's time William makes the effort. Abby just says that her brother is stubborn and insists that he goes and who is he to say no?
On the car ride to the bed and breakfast Cordell booked, Stella and August are ignoring each other in the backseat. Cordell tries to get some conversation going and tells August that his uncle Liam was named after their great-Uncle William, Abeline’s brother. August questions why Abby would do that if they’re on such bad terms that they haven’t spoken in two decades and relates to being the black sheep of the family. Cordell tries to insist that he’s not, but August has stopped listening by now.
What comes next can be best described as a train wreck. August tries to politely ask Stella for a charger for a phone, but Stella gets irritated by him taking her earbuds out to ask. He calls her a toad, which sets off a tangent of arguing over which of them sucks the worst: August for sending Mawline to the hospital or Stella for any of her various crimes.
After a few minutes, Cordell gets tired of their nonsense and pulls over, kicking them out of the truck. There’s three miles still to the B&B, which should give them plenty of time to get over themselves. With that, he drives away.
Stella and August arrive at the B&B sometime later and start looking for their Dad. Stella tries to ask the man at the front desk, who abrasively tells them to leave and that he’s booked full for the weekend before she can even get a word out. Stella matches his temper and August tries to calm them down without much luck.
Then, Cordell arrives, and Stella haughtily introduces him as their Texas Ranger father. Cordell then clears up all the confusion by introducing this man as their great-uncle William.
Side note: Fun fact- William is played by Jeff Kober, aka the chatty inmate from Supernatural episode 2.19 “Folsom Blues”!
William isn’t happy to see Cordell either and tells them, again, that the B&B is booked full. Cordell doesn’t give up and says that not only do they have a reservation, but they have a message from his estranged sister: Abby wants him to come visit. She had a mini-stroke recently and, while she is on the mend, she’d like to try and repair their relationship before it’s too late. William rejects the olive branch and says Abby can call him. When Cordell retorts that Abby has called him, every Thanksgiving since that fateful argument, William says that what’s between them has been going on for over two decades and that she’s caused him too much pain to even think about trying to repair their relationship. But he can’t turn away paying customers so they can stay. For now.
As Cordell and the kids leave to unload the truck, he compliments Will on what he’s done with Meemaw’s house.
Side note: “These are your kids? Figures.” I love Will already! I hope we see him again.
The next morning, Cordell, Stella, and August are having a very quiet breakfast and Cordell tries to broach the subject of healing their relationship. There’s been a lot of hurt and anger around recently but they’re family. So, let’s talk.
Stella starts things off by asking why August hates them and acts like he doesn’t want to be part of their family. August asks if she has anything else she’d like to say to make him feel worse than he already does, and the arguing starts up again. Cordell tries to stem it but appears to give up and leaves the table, telling them to do whatever they want.
The siblings sit across from each other in silence for a few seconds before Stella again broaches the subject of August’s recent behavior. August shuts her down and calls her a toad again, which causes Stella to realize something. She knows why August has been acting like this: he misses Mom.
August tries to deny it, but Stella pushes onward. She points out that, as much as August feels Cordell favors her, she always felt that way about his relationship with Emily. She reminds him that “toad” was Emily’s special nickname for August and that their relationship always seemed so easy. They were so close, and he feels lost without her. August calms down and sees Stella’s point. He says that their mom had a way of making things make sense and Stella agrees.
Side note: I need flashbacks of Emily and August now please.
Stella then makes him an offer. She knows she can’t be what Emily was for him, but if he needs anybody to yell at or vent to, she can be that person. After all, she’s a little less precious than Mawline and she can take it. This leads to a comparison between all the crap Stella’s pulled over the past couple of seasons and August sending Abby to the hospital. The camera pans out and we see Cordell standing just outside the room, smiling as his children reconcile.
Side note: Yes, Stella, you have done much worse. So very much worse. Glad to see you acknowledge it.
The next day, Stella and Cordell are waiting in the truck for August when Cordell commends her on how she handled things at breakfast with August. Stella admits that she really just didn’t want her relationship with August to get as bad as Abby and Will’s did. The idea of her own brother not caring that she was ill is scary.
Cordell then suggests that they start doing more family stuff like this, just the three of them. Maybe Sunday dinners to start with. Stella agrees…as long as Cordell doesn’t cook. We don’t need a repeat of the Noodle Incident.
August comes out with no sign of Uncle Will, which is a bummer for them and for Abby, but at least they tried. As they pull away from the building, Will comes running out to stop them. He tells Cordell that he thought a lot about their conversation of yesterday. He does miss Abby but he’s just not ready for a visit yet; there’s too much hurt. Cordell can respect that, but Will would do well to remember that they won’t always have time to mend things. Will comments that Cordell got his uncle’s wisdom and bids them farewell.
Back at the ranch, Cordell finds Abby prepping some jam jars to give away. He regretfully informs her that Will didn’t feel up to a visit but she’s just glad he tried. And it was nice for Will to get to meet the kids. Cordell then thanks her for pushing all of them to go on the trip to try and mend the break between Stella and August. Abby initially denies such an accusation of meddling, but Cordell can see right through her. Luckily for them, it worked.
Then, miracle of miracles, William calls her. Abby doesn’t know what to do or what to say and tries to get Cordell to answer for her but, unlike her, he’s not keen on meddling in her relationships. He assures her that she’ll figure out what to do and leaves her to it. He smiles seeing her answer the phone and talk to her brother for the first time in almost two decades.
We now come to the final scene of the episode, where Bonham visits Cordell with a serious topic in mind: he thinks it’s time for Cordell to move off the ranch. No, it’s got nothing to do with Abby’s health scare (and she’d be mad if he knew they were even talking about this). But Stella has already moved out and the farmhouse was only ever supposed to be temporary anyhow. It’s time for Cordell to get back on his own feet and have his own space again, just for his family. Cordell agrees, because what else can he say, but we get the sense that he’s not entirely onboard with the idea.
With that, our episode comes to a close.
This was a surprisingly light episode for season 3. We’ve had a lot of heavy angst and I think this was a nice break, but I suspect this was only the calm before the storm.
I liked seeing Stella and August repair their relationship. Stella realizing what the root of August’s problem was shows just how strong their bond is and I think that whole scene was acted beautifully.
I also liked that Will wasn’t 100% ready to fix things between him and Abby just yet. He’s ready to extend an olive branch but there’s too much hurt there to go much further than that. I hope we get to see him again in the future and that we see him and Abby fix things.
James’ attitude this episode was very off-putting. The way he told Cassie to shut up and how he “disciplined” Trey in front of the whole squad was unsettling and almost out of character. I suspect in future episodes we’ll find out that he’s in hot water because of something his more excitable rangers (*cough cough* Cordell and Cassie *cough cough*) did in the field but that behavior was inexcusable. Questioning if Trey should even be a ranger after letting him on because he was willing to make split-second decisions and go off book to get the job done is a crazy quick shift and I hope there’s a deeper layer to this and it’s not just bad writing.
Overall, this was a pretty good episode: 7/10. Mostly heartwarming with just enough angst to make it a drama.
But those are just my thoughts. What did y’all think? Was James being too harsh? Should Cassie have let Trey follow orders? Were you as happy as I was to see Cordell being treated as a competent parent? Are you ready to see Cordell and the kids move off the ranch? Have Stella and August completely healed or is there more work to do? And will Bonham ever be able to look at August the same way again? Let me know what you think in the comments! I’m so excited to see your thoughts.
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