#100DaysofFanFavorites | Day 27

25 Nearest and Dearest 24/25
Undercover Agents (Graceland)

Graceland-cast copy.jpg

There are countless TV friendships that could’ve made it onto this list, but Graceland has always been a special series here at MGcircles. And while the six agents weren’t always the best of friends, the series at its core was always about their in-house dynamics. It’s why the series differed from general FBI dramas — it focused on problems within the house more than it did on the outside. At times, it was incredibly toxic and full of secrets, but when they were good, they were great. If the series had gone on for longer than three seasons, I’m certain these friendships would’ve grown towards the better. Paul Briggs, Mike Warren, Johnny Tuturro, Paige Arkin, Dale Jakes, and Charlie DeMarco needed each other. They were better together than they were apart and though they’ve brought life threatening harm to one another, they’ve learned, and in the end, they’d do anything to protect each other. We don’t choose our family, but we choose our team, and this group of agents would choose each other over and over again.

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Graceland 3×13 “No Old Tigers” Recap

Spoilers Ahead

“No Old Tigers” should proudly wear a headline that reads: “there will be tears.”

Episode Summary: Briggs takes Ari’s life into his own hands. Jakes leaves Graceland. Mike signs off on the Sarkissian report and allows Gusti to go free. Everyone’s torn up by their actions but at the end of the day, if there’s a season four, we can be certain the house will have a lot of talking to do.

Review | Analysis: Presumably we were all to be extremely shocked by the finale; however, I didn’t find myself gasping one bit. I suppose this is largely due to the fact that I’ve seen way too many TV series dealing with similar storylines. That said, while I’m slightly underwhelmed with the turn of events, “No Old Tigers” was an exceptional episode featuring some of the most jaw dropping performances. Where’s Brandon Jay McLaren’s Emmy?!

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Graceland 3×12 “Dog Catches Car” Recap

Spoilers Ahead

Still no idea what’s happening on the show. Anyone else?

Episode Summary: Johnny shoots Briggs. Mike punches Briggs. Martun tries to blow everyone up with fake gas. Gusti remains tied to a car. A drunken Charlie starts to believe everything she’s been through was for nothing. Jakes hides all the money he stole from a vault under his mattress then leaves the room where Courtney finds it. Paige and Mike finally bust Martun, but with Ari still remaining we can be certain things will be insane.

Review | Analysis: At the very least tonight’s episode focused heavily on our main characters and that alone makes me a happy viewer. However, the agonizing wait until next week’s finale is already dreadful. We’re essentially back to square one where it’s unclear to who to trust and there’s definitely more than meets the eye. At any rate, “Dog Catches Car” featured some incredibly raw moments that are long overdue. It’s always best to see moments of character growth done tastefully rather than having trivial matters glossed over for the sake of an exciting plot.

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Graceland 3×11 “The Wires” Recap

Spoilers Ahead

And the web of lies continues.

Episode Summary: Charlie and Jakes finally get Germaine behind bars. Briggs continues to confuse everyone and their mothers. Ari’s still horrid. After surviving the locker room beating, Javi’s mom welcomes Johnny into their family but things may go sour now that her son’s been brutally murdered. Mike, Paige, and Johnny finally have proof that Briggs has been moving sarin gas.

Review | Analysis: Word around the street is that there’s no way fans will ever suspect how the season will end thereby, that has me thinking that this entire thing with Briggs is actually all part of an even bigger plan. Perhaps someone else in this house is working along side him making all of this more shocking in the long run? And that’s something I’d absolutely hate to see but I don’t know what else the series can do that’ll shock the audience even more than Briggs’ betrayal. Or maybe, the truth is that he’s grown fond of working for the Sarkissians and at some point, he’ll play a vast role in Graceland getting burned. What do you readers think the shocking ending will look like?

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Graceland 3×10 “Master of Weak Ties” Recap

Spoilers Ahead

Everything’s connected and Paul Briggs doesn’t like sharing all his plans. 

Episode Summary: After Charlie learns that Germaine has a huge contact ATF is after, she asks Jake to get a meet with them. Johnny and Paige help Briggs do whatever he’s doing. Ari’s gone through the tattoo ceremony and Toros’ death was staged as a suicide. Oh, and as it turns out, Gusti’s been working with Briggs. Lol.

Review | Analysis: I appreciated Lucy Liu’s direction for such a driven episode, but I wish she was given more opportunities to work around the main cast in Graceland. The most fascinating part of the entire episode was the opening segments with the group trying to clean up the mess from last week. It was cinematically gorgeous and for a little series like Graceland, it felt extremely fitting.

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Graceland 3×09 “Hand of Glory” Recap

Spoilers Ahead 

Things aren’t ever what they seem and that’s pretty frustrating.

Episode Summary: Charlie convinces Jake to go back in business with Germaine. Briggs tortures Logan to prove his loyalties to Ari. Mike and Johnny are on duty to watch Toros, but they ditch that scene when Mike starts to second-guess Briggs’ intentions. After Logan’s had enough he gives up Paige’s name and Ari notifies the Sarkissian family realizing that the DEA’s + FBI’s intentions are to bring down Martun. And when Paige flees from the scene, Toros follows — only it doesn’t end well for him.

Review | Analysis:Hand of Glory” was riveting and action packed — a reminder of the kind of show Graceland can be. I was proud to see that each character had a prominent storyline which was thoroughly intriguing and set off the rest of the season’s tone excellently. My only concern now is hurry up and wrap up this case with the Sarkissian family because it’s been too much already.

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Graceland 3×08 “Savior Complex” Recap

Spoilers Ahead 

When it appears one agent’s finally chosen the right path, another seems to be trailing off somewhere unpredictable. 

Episode Summary: Odin Rossi makes a quick reappearance. With the help of the red birds, Mike realizes he needs the team’s help to detox. Jakes finally arranges a meet with Germaine but as it turns out he’s a CI under the ATF’s protection. In other words, everything Charlie’s gone through and lost has been for nothing. Amber’s back in prison. Ari and Toros are debating dealing with the FBI. And Vin is going back home leaving Mike in charge of the nuclear weapon.

Review | Analysis: “Savior Complex” much like “Bon Voyage” was full of riveting performances. However, “Savior Complex” has kicked off the rest of the season’s arc in a way I never imagined possible. Although this episode was intriguing, I still can’t help but be disappointed in the fact that characters are always sidelined. Graceland is about undercover FBI/DEA/Customs agents and sometimes, it seems we don’t give enough attention to the rest. I miss the days where they each had their own cases then came together at the end of the day — those are fun.

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Graceland 3×07 “Bon Voyage” Recap

Spoilers Ahead

 “Bon Voyage”  featured some of the most powerful performances we’ve ever seen on Graceland. And if that doesn’t make for great television, then what does?

Episode Summary: Johnny and Jakes reluctantly agree to help Briggs put Ari behind bars, but their plans go down the drain when Ari and Toros don’t show up for the meet. Charlie’s about to end her case in Florida, and in the midst of it, she loses her baby. The team’s confronted Mike’s addiction and while the intervention doesn’t go as planned, it appears he’s honestly willing to get help.

Review | Analysis: I wholeheartedly appreciated the fact that “Bon Voyage” paid so much homage to the first season of Graceland. It was an incredible reminder of why this series is so unique amongst cop dramas and the fire it’s lacked for a while was finally returned. Additionally, we hadn’t been given enough material to showcase just how gifted the actors in this series are, and it’s great that the episode gave them opportunities to really shine. It was evocative, intriguing, and an hour that should’ve most definitely been longer.

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Graceland 3×06 “Sidewinder” Recap

Spoilers Ahead

Secrets are out and foundations are strengthened.

Episode Summary: Toros just isn’t fond of Briggs so luckily, Paige saves his life in the unsexiest sex scene ever. Mike proves he’s trustworthy to Gusti. Charlie and Jakes successfully arrange a meet with Germaine. Johnny’s awesome. And the team finally learns Mike’s secret.

Review | Analysis: The best part of this episode was the fact that each team member was paired off on a mission. And in the world of Graceland, there’s nothing better than team work. I didn’t particularly find this episode as entertaining as last week’s but it’s made me so excited for next week.

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Graceland 3×05 “Piñon Tree” Recap

Spoilers Ahead

When one door closes …

Episode Summary: The team’s disappointed in themselves when they hear Colby’s lost his life due to their plans. Mike’s continuing to chase his visions all while his addiction worsens. Charlie’s still searching for Germaine. And after saving Lucia’s life, Johnny finally puts Carlito behind bars.

Review | Analysis: “Piñon Tree” featured my favorite moment thus far in season three, however, I found myself wanting a lot more than what we were given. I’m so pleased with the fact that this episode focused less on Ari and more on our agents. As I’ve said before, I have no problems with guest stars, but I do have issues with them taking up too much screen time while the main characters get sidelined – that said, I’m glad we got the focus back this week because it gives me plenty to talk about.

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