Wrangling Walker: "The Deserters" 3.13
The third season of Walker is really keeping its stride, which makes me happy. My preference is for a lot of crime drama and a pinch of family issues, which is what we’ve been getting.
I’ll skip the recap and go for my reflections, grouping by characters. I like where this seems to be going, and I can’t wait to find out what’s really happening!
The Walker Family
Everyone is working on upgrades to the stables, including hoisting the new Walker Ranch logo. Bonham is putting in a good faith effort, Auggie is there but not working too hard, while Stella and Liam are getting better at collaborating. They talk about the horse rescue/therapy as being ‘dreams coming true’. That sounds nice, but I got chills like it was a warning things are about to go wrong.
Kevin shows up, talking about the big donor he got them but everything he says has a note of self-promotion and suggesting that they’re not doing enough. Abeline is borderline rude. Auggie asks her to be nicer, and for his sake she invites Kevin to dinner, but he declines. Bonham is angry that Cordell is ‘too busy’ to help—does he remember Cordell has an actual job?
Kevin asks Liam why they chose equine therapy, and Liam says it helped after his captivity. Kevin mentions he’s an amateur pilot….hmm, why does this come up?
Later, Cassie goes to get files from the ranch and walks in to see Kevin coming downstairs. He apologizes for being awkward, and promises that ‘next time will be different’.
I could see the wheels turning in Cassie’s head wondering why he’d been upstairs. And is that a promise or a threat?
Trey is working with Lana doing a simulation in the Gray Flag compound. They fail, in part due to her not-yet-healed gunshot. Lana asks him about the woman’s voice she heard when she was injured, and how he suddenly had gauze to save her life. He plays it off like something she imagined.
Lana challenges him about not being who he says he is, because Gray Flag would have let her die.
She is disillusioned. He says he requested her as a partner to keep her safe, and has an idea of how she can escape—then sends her to get help. She makes a break for it, and he helps her, but loses his notebook on the way. Uh-oh.
Trey shoots one of the insurrectionists who chases them, and lets him die rather than saving him and blowing his cover. That’s going to make the post-assignment readjustment even worse. Like Cordell, Trey is finding that the things that have to be done to stay undercover changes you, and not in a good way.
The big boss is coming—and it’s Kevin.
Cordell, James, Cooper and Cassie
Cordell is a little manic with his focus on finding Cooper. He says he stopped looking for the ‘why’ and is working on the ‘how’. Cassie’s comment about Cooper going all ‘Winter Soldier’ is a nice comics fan nod. Cordell says he knows Cooper’s aliases and used one to track more. Now he’s found a recent car rental and knows rented cars have trackers. He wants to use that to find Cooper.
James warns that Cooper won’t let Cordell take him alive, but Cordell wants to de-escalate so they can talk. Cassie is willing to accept James’ order to shoot Cooper, and loads up with a rifle and body armor. That’s quite a difference from the beginning of the season when she wouldn’t carry a gun. Cordell sends her to the ranch to pick up paperwork, says he’ll meet her at the rental car agency, but of course he goes after Cooper alone.
Cordell finds the rental car tracker removed and in the middle of the road. A truck barrels into him, knocking him out. When he wakes up, he’s been dragged into the woods and his gun, phone, and shoes are gone.
He finds a house and evades a tripwire (which reminded me of the tripwire Sam Winchester evaded when Gordon Walker set a trap).
Cooper jumps him and they fight. Cordell manages to cuff Cooper to a pipe and interrogates him.
Cooper says he’s not Gray Flag, that he didn’t have anything to do with Cordell’s kidnapping and tells Cordell ‘trust your gut’. Cordell says he blamed himself for Cooper’s supposed death. Cooper deserted because he was disillusioned, and only came back for his mother’s funeral. He says Cordell became the man he himself fell short of being.
Cooper tricks Cordell, wrestles with him, and Cordell ends up cuffed. (Cordell, like Sam Winchester, gets knocked out an awful lot.) Cooper leaves Cordell his gun, phone, and wallet but takes his Ranger hat, and says he has to go deal with the situation.
Cordell’s instinct to talk to Cooper rather than write him off based on circumstantial evidence appears to be valid, but we don’t know what game Cooper is playing, or who was behind killing their old unit. I’m looking forward to seeing where this goes, and we’re coming to the end of the season!
Later, James, Cassie and some back-up Rangers are watching the Gray Flag camp from afar. They already know Cordell went off on his own after Cooper and they can’t reach him. Now they see Kevin get out of the car in the compound, and Cassie’s betrayal is palpable.
There’s a whole lot of betrayal going on, but the real motives are murky. How did a slick guy like Kevin end up running Gray Flag—and what does he get out of it? Is he really the ‘big boss’ or a front for powerful donors who want something that requires armed force? Cooper betrayed his unit and his country by deserting, but we don’t know what he’s learned since coming home or how that ties in to the story so far. Trey helped Lana desert the strike team, but then betrays his medic training in letting the fighter die rather than expose his role undercover.
Given the uncertainty of the show’s future, I hope we get at least a satisfactory answer before the end of the season!
As always, Jared and the cast turned in a great performance.
What do you think?
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Images courtesy of The CW. Illustrated by Nightsky. Screencaps by Raloria on LJ.