Monday, January 27, 2020

REVIEW: '9-1-1: Lone Star' - An Emergency at a Grain Solo Instantly Turns Dangerous for Marjan and T.K. in 'Texas Proud'

FOX's 9-1-1: Lone Star - Episode 1.03 "Texas Proud"

Emergencies include an accident at a grain silo and a steak eating contest. Judd calls out Owen's preferential treatment of TK. Marjan feels ostracized at her new mosque after another rescue video goes viral. Owen helps Michelle uncover new information about her sister's disappearance.

In 2019, the television industry aired 532 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of FOX's 9-1-1: Lone Star.

"Texas Proud" was written by Kristy Lowrey and directed by Jennifer Lynch

The 9-1-1 audience has come to expect a fair amount of absurdity in the emergencies the first responders respond to in every episode. With the expansion of the franchise, that invites more specificity into the individual locations. The original show has a lot of places to explore because it is set in Los Angeles. Austin is just as diverse and insane too. But it also allows for this hour to open with the firehouse responding to a man falling into a corn silo and Judd having to take the lead. This is actually a common occurrence. It can often be a fatal outcome because of the strength of these seeds when they come together. It's perilous when Marjan and T.K. get sucked under as well. It means the last resort option has to be executed. The silo has to be permanently damaged in order to ensure the people have a place to go that doesn't lead to their suffocation on corn seeds. It once again makes it all too apparent that this job is dangerous and lethal. Judd has just lost his entire team. He can't bear to lose anyone else so soon afterwards. That's why he lashes out at T.K. for being so flippant about the risk involved. T.K. is proud to declare all the incredible saves he had in New York. And yet, Judd is the only local who serves in this firehouse. Everyone else was recruited in order to serve in this station. It's an honor for all of them. However, there is a learning curve as well. They don't know the precise physics that have to be accounted for when it comes to an emergency like this. Owen understands immediately that Judd should take command. He respects that and honors that intelligence. This world remains so new to everyone though. They are trying to get their bearings in this environment. They have formed strong bonds as a team. They care about each other and tease each other as well. It's meaningful when the entire team rallies around Marjan when she feels ashamed after her hijab is swept off her head while going through the silo. They understand that's important to her. Sure, they may not know specifically why. But it holds a powerful resonance to her. It's an expression of her faith and the connection to the generations of strong women who came before her. She may be shamed at her new mosque. However, she wants to feel empowered to prove that Muslim women can be just as bold and heroic even in a place that doesn't totally welcome them or understand how they express themselves in the world. It's a part of her identity. It's under attack. She has support at the firehouse but not at the mosque. That is strange and alienating to her but it's also comforting that she has some place to go with pride and reverence. That kind of open communication is what's necessary in order to fuel the storylines moving forward. Judd and T.K. lash out because they are both experiencing pain. It's only when they can discuss their feelings with each other that they come to an understanding. Meanwhile, it remains a massive mistake for Owen to keep his cancer a secret. He is receiving chemo now. He is then doing tequila shots with Michelle afterwards. That can't be healthy. It makes sense when he eventually vomits. And yet, that may just be a tactic to show how powerful and intimidating he can still be. This disease doesn't have to define him. He fears that it will. The secrecy and the shame will do so much more destruction though. He fears what might happen next. He wants to control how others will react. That may cost him because the series is gearing up for its first major disaster event. A tornado has touched down in Austin. Up until this point, there has been a fair amount of emotional turmoil. Michelle comes to a new understanding with her missing sister's former boyfriend. She accepts that something happened to her that was completely independent of what they both knew about her. That is devastating. It brings about a sense of shared catharsis over the loss. But again, the city is in peril and will ensure that the destruction comes to uproot the lives of those who call this city their home.