Saturday, March 13, 2021

REVIEW: 'Station 19' - The Crew Tries to Help Each Other and Their Loved Ones Fight the World's Injustices in 'Train in Vain'

ABC's Station 19 - Episode 4.06 "Train in Vain"

Carina and DeLuca pursue Opal, the woman suspected of sex trafficking last seen in the Grey's Anatomy winter finale. Meanwhile, Maya leaves Andy in charge for the yearly inspection, and Dean and Vic struggle to cope with the fallout of Dean's traumatic arrest.

In 2020, the television industry aired 493 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 ABC's Station 19.

"Train in Vain" was directed by Allison Liddi-Brown with story by Rob Giles & Meghann Plunkett and teleplay by Meghann Plunkett

For awhile, it seems like the narrative is waiting for something big to happen. Something dramatic certainly does occur at the end. DeLuca is stabbed after he and Carina have spent the entire episode pursuing Opal. It's a high-stakes plot that directly connects to the overall story both this show and Grey's Anatomy have been telling over the past year regarding human trafficking. It's a sinister criminal entity that is shockingly well-organized and coordinated. It preys on the systemic biases in the world. It's heinous and despicable. It fuels the crew at Station 19 to take action themselves when the word of a Black mother wasn't enough for the police to react accordingly. All of this highlights the many ways in which people are incredibly dismissive of each other out of pure hatred and lack of empathy. People shouldn't have to prove that they are worthy of being respected and treated with legitimate concern. That is often the reality for communities of color though. They have to be as loud as possible in order to get any help whatsoever. Meanwhile, the world frequently fails to repay them for the service they provide to the communities in exposing the heinous nature of the world that is ever present. They frequently come across as the people who truly recognize what the world is with no qualms whatsoever. It's the people in power who want to delude themselves into thinking that something else is true. It's not good enough to simply acknowledge the systemic nature of these biases either. That too dismisses the concern as being too big and embedded to ever truly change. That can't be true. It's worth fighting to make the world a better place. It's incumbent on people with influence to use that power responsibly. Public shaming provides some accountability as it allows things to be rectified after the fact. Trauma is still inflicted on individuals who were pleading to be respected and listened to with humanity. That didn't occur. And so, Miller is willing to mend fences with his family so that he can sue the Seattle police department. People must be held accountable. Their actions deserve consequences. It's not good enough to undo everything because it was all captured on tape. That places the burden of proof on the people witnessing the abuse instead of the people being charged with protecting the community. It can't be swept under the rug without acknowledging that the actions taken were wrong and destructive. Bishop is willing to apologize. She knows following the rules off duty only made the situation worse. She recognizes that. She wants to keep her crew safe. She doesn't have all the answers. Nor do the people going through the emotional minefield of this experience. Andy wants to keep her husband safe. She wants to love him for as long as she can. His perspective on the world is different than her's. It shouldn't take this action happening right in front of her for her to realize that. Jack shouldn't need Ben to tell him how to offer support to Miller during this turbulent time. It's simply necessary to be empathetic and supportive of the process those pained are going through. It's a powerful conversation. One seen in action with Travis providing both Miller and Vic with the precise response they need right now. The moment is still about them as well. They have the freedom to let out these emotions however they want even though it also happens to be inspection day. That could force everyone to bottle it all up. They are lucky to have a Battalion Chief who is understanding of what happened and appreciates the honesty they greet him with. It's still awkward. But it also fosters a conversation moving forward that can be beneficial. And then, the rest of the episode is all about DeLuca and Carina stalking Opal and trying to get support. Their sibling relationship has been well-developed. It's genuine as they have honest conversations together. Carina doesn't question her brother's actions. She just wants him to be safe. He still ultimately gets too close. Moreover, the story reveals that the connections Opal has are even more widespread and vicious than the support DeLuca has in the fire and police departments. That too is daunting because it reaffirms that it takes so much power and conviction to oppose the heinous abuses of the world. But the hour also builds to a dire situation for DeLuca. One that was delayed for the most part to keep anything truly consequential happening on Grey's Anatomy where he is a series regular. Something major couldn't happen to him on the spinoff even though Carina has made the transition over to this narrative through her ongoing relationship with Maya. It's all complicated. As such, the story is only half-told here.