We can never have episodes that showcase what a valuable character Alvin Olinsky is.
Episode Summary: When a known convict named Dennis Lee comes around the block again, the unit give their all to make sure he doesn’t escape this time. After Roman selflessly chooses to risk their careers to save a child’s life, another officer on duty chooses to press charges for being punched by him. Erin helps Olinsky find out more about his daughter’s boyfriend by telling Mouse to do a background check. And on happiest note, Nadia is one more step closer to becoming cop.
Review | Analysis: This isn’t the first time I’m writing about an episode that deals with human trafficking, but it’s still not easy to do so. At the end of this review I’ll post a few websites and organizations that deal with the horrific acts and if there’s any way you can help out, you’re wonderful – even if it just means spreading awareness.
I love that the episode started with Erin and Alvin having lunch (or was it breakfast?) with his daughter Lexi. One of the things I adore most about Chicago P.D. and the beautiful ensemble cast, is the fact each of their relationships with one another are uniquely noteworthy. Thereby, when it comes to Alvin and Erin, it feels as though he’s a fatherly figure to her as well. Although it’s pretty clear that he’s pretty much everyone’s fatherly figure (except Voight’s – he can be the cooler brother in that one). Moving forward – it’s nice that the conversation was with Lindsay because she’s the paradigm of someone whose risky life choices in the past played a massive role in her success today. Adding on to their wonderful scenes this week, my favorite was the brief instant where Erin places her hand on his shoulder to reassure him he’s got everything covered when they learned that Lee’s back. It was a subtly powerful way of Erin reminding Alvin of the things he often reminds everyone else of – their strengths. And it illuminated the amount of faith that she and the entire unit have in him. Scenes like this always tend to show a magnitude of heart beautifully. And I loved that in the end, Erin was the one to remind him that it’s okay if some people had to get hurt because the bad guy’s caught now. It’s never easy to lose lives, but it also isn’t easy to save everyone’s. The most important thing is that they continuously try and this unit does so every single day of their lives.
That’s the tricky thing about situations like this, there’s nothing anyone can do say or do that can make up for the loss. No ounce of justice could make the aches people feel go away and it’s entirely understandable that a case like this one could send Alvin to a place of isolation. And the scary part is that the ending was left a bit ambiguous. While it certainly appears as though he’s trying to move forward knowing he’s finally caught Dennis Lee, it was painfully evident that a part of him is grieving horribly for the people that had to suffer. It isn’t easy to watch or know that innocent females are sold as sex slaves then killed in the process, but it must be even harder when a man with a teenage daughter sees something like that. Anyone who has something to lose generally takes it much harder. While Alvin’s been a detective for years now and he’s seen terrible things more often than not, it’s clear that when it comes to this case, his top priority is making sure his daughter is always safe and happy. It was brave of him to take the risk and invite her boyfriend over for dinner after hearing about his clean record, but it was mostly courageous because it meant that he was allowing his daughter to grow up. And for a man, there’s no transition period more difficult than the realization that their little girl isn’t so little anymore.
Elias Koteas is brilliant – plainly, simply brilliant. There are many series on air with a bright ensemble cast like Chicago P.D.’s but they don’t all shine as phenomenally on their own as the actors on this show do. Anytime we have something centered around a particular character, I’m always floored by the riveting performances we see. And I was especially in awe of the full range of emotions Koteas delivered this week. The moment I found myself most impressed (although the entire episode is really filled with excellent work) was the moment he spoke to the family that came to visit them at the station. Koteas did a truly commendable job of exhibiting torturous remorse in the subtlest form. You know Olinsky was trying to remain strong, but deep down, his heartbreak, uncertainties, and anger were clearly consuming him. It’s never easy watching one of the strongest figures fall, and it was so evident that Olinsky was desperately trying not to even though it was happening.
Additionally, I’m so glad Roman and Burgess took the risk that they did because ten more minutes and that little girl may not have made it. Too many innocent people were killed this week, and it would’ve been too gruesomely depressing if a little girl lost her life as well.
Lastly, one of my favorite things about this season of Chicago P.D. is that we’re seeing Platt’s compassionate and sensitive side more. It’s incredible that she’s choosing to help Nadia in her journey. And if you ask me, trading training secrets is pretty awesome because if there’s one thing we know, it’s that Platt’s a badass. Plus, 95% on her written exam? Go, Nadia. #SmartIsSexy indeed.
I’d like to take a moment to address sex trafficking outside of the show. As you all hopefully know by now, over millions of children and women are sold yearly worldwide. What we see on television doesn’t come close to the reality of it all. It’s truly unimaginable and heartbreaking beyond words. It’s not a topic that should ever be taken lightly and there are ways in which you could get involved – spreading awareness is getting involved, partaking in activities meant to spread awareness is getting involved as well. I’d advice that if you’re someone who’s interested in helping out, do your research thoroughly on organizations. These are a few of the websites available where you could educate yourself further on the topic. Additionally, as a trigger warning, most of these stories aren’t for the faint hearted and it’s alright if that’s how you are – getting involved can be as simple as signing certain petitions and letting others know you’re against it. The effort is enough. However, if you’re interested in enlightening yourself further, merely be advised that it isn’t a light topic.
Chicago P.D.’s going on another hiatus until the 28th of April that’ll feature a three way crossover between SVU and Fire. And I cannot wait.