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Lethal Weapon: “Surf N Turf” Review

LETHAL WEAPON: Pictured L-R: Damon Wayans and Clayne Crawford in the "Surf n Turf" episode of LETHAL WEAPON airing Wednesday, Sept. 28 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2016 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Jordin Althaus/FOX

Riggs and Murtaugh deal with illegal weapons and BB-Q.

WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!

The Lethal Weapon series is in full swing now with “Surf N Turf”, the follow up to the pilot. This week, Riggs and Murtaugh stumble on an illegal weapons ring after responding to a noise complaint in the Hollywood Hills where a boxer is hosting a party and shots are fired. Jason Derulo guest starred as the boxer for 45 seconds before getting shot. Yup, he’s on his way to having a successful acting career. After the show’s weekly car chase, Riggs and Murtaugh return to the crime screen and discover a witness saw the shooter. The witness happened to be a pregnant woman targeted for assassination on account that she was in a relationship with the man in charge of selling these illegal weapons. The whole ordeal ends in a shootout with the gunrunners at a warehouse. There were literally fireworks.

The case was pretty standard, as was this episode, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It plays out like a typical second series episode. The series is still finding its groove, working with the characters and advancing their relationships. I think I enjoyed the development between Murtaugh and Riggs more than the case. The two mismatched detectives continue to find ways to make their partnership work. They play with names of famous cop duos and catch phrases that can define their partnership, which is where the episode’s title comes from. It added for some pretty funny lines of dialogue. Damon Wayans and Clayne Crawford continue to have terrific chemistry with each other, as well as give energetic performances. Crawford continues to show a decent amount of range with his interpretation of Martin Riggs. He still has much disregard for his own life, smiling while getting his ass kicked during a bar fight, acting chummy and wild with a gun tester that tried to kill the pregnant witness earlier. Then he shows his emotional side when trying to hide his emotions whenever the subject of his deceased wife and unborn child come up. Wayans plays it cool as he tries to control his heart rate and patience with Riggs. Murtaugh ranting over Riggs not showing up to the dinner he invited him over to, and how much preparation it took him to make his ribs was kind of funny. Once Murtaugh discovers Riggs’ wife was carrying a child when she died, he begins to understand Riggs’ behavior more. This opens the door for some sympathy towards Riggs. I thought it was really funny seeing Murtaugh and Riggs going back to Murtaugh’s house, drunk and about to eat the leftover bbq ribs after solving their case. It was a great moment for the two.

The supporting characters had just a tiny bit more screen time than the pilot, but they are still quite one dimensional. The captain is a little more easy going, but he tries to get Riggs and Murtaugh to restrain themselves out in the field because their escapades are costing the city thousands of dollars. Jordana Brewster’s character, Dr. Maureen Cahill got a little deeper with Riggs, encouraging him to talk to her or he will not be able to continue his detective duties. The department forensic expert they call “Scorcese” appeared more, as did a lady detective, Sonya Bailey, but they’re still only there to give Riggs and Murtaugh support to their case. Keesha Sharp as Murtaugh’s wife, Trish still remains as the stand out supporting character, and she still charms. We learn that she’s a lawyer, so that’s different as opposed to her just being a stay at home wife in the movies. I’m pretty sure she’s going to be a heavier presence in the show than any of the other supporting cast, and that’s fine because I like that she’s supportive of her husband but also concerned. She scold her husband and his partner when it’s necessary, and it’s quite enjoyable when she does. I liked seeing her warm up to Riggs more. Her asking him to make sure Murtaugh comes home at the end of each day was a nice touch.

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McG, like the pilot, also directed this episode. I gotta say, he seems to work better in television with a restrictive budget than a studio film where he has all sorts of cash at his disposal. This allows a fine level of restraint and less annoying flash and flare. The action of this episode was all right. Nothing to truly marvel at, even with a chase scene that ends with an explosion. The shootout at the end was a real let down. Riggs and Murtaugh enter a warehouse full of well armed bad guys but only one guy gets shot dead while everyone else runs for cover. Murtaugh shoots a truck full of explosives and blows the whole warehouse up. It would have been nice to see a few more guys get shot. The main bad guy was boring, I should mention that. I guess, with this being a episodic show, it’s not going to leave much room for well developed villains. Still, they could try to give us bad guys we enjoy seeing getting killed. Oh, yeah, and this episode had a true bullsh*t “Fast & Furious” moment when Riggs chases after the pregnant witness, leading them to the rooftop of her high rise apartment building. When Riggs sees that a sniper, the gun tester I mentioned earlier, is about to kill her, he leaps after her, they fall off the roof and into a window of the apartment building over. No blood, no broken bones, just a joke about how the city will pay for the broken window.

So there ya have it, the second episode of Lethal Weapon. Just another case solved with plenty of silly moments and some heartfelt ones in between. I know it’s probably too early to tell in this show will take on a more serialized tone in the future – or if the show even has a future – so for now, all we can expect is a fun hour a week with these two characters. However, this episode showed us that the bromance of Martin and Riggs is growing pretty fast, which is much needed in order for any of us to keep watching.

Written by
Big Gabe was raised and lives in Pico Rivera, CA. Although born with moebius syndrone, a rare congenital neurological disorder which affects Gabe's ability to form full facial expressions and causes a speech impediment, he does not allow that to stop him from expressing his love and passion for film, music, comics, and all forms of pop culture. Big Gabe's YouTube channel is called Stuffed Burrito Entertainment, where he makes weekly comic book haul videos and occasional movie reviews. His favorite movie genre is Action, has named Terminator 2: Judgement Day his all time favorite film, and often calls Big Trouble in Little China one of the greatest films ever made.

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