Case #3.02: "Slippin' Into Darkness"

Downtown, a passing bus tells us we're in a neighborhood called Hastings. A guy on a payphone is clearly planning something illegal, telling the person on the other end that there are no cops around. He tells a homeless man to find another phone and approaches a nearby car.

Booker and Tom are sitting in it. They try to convince Sketchy Guy to sell them a lot of drugs, but Sketchy Guy "doesn't do big things with small people." "We make money, you make money," Booker points out. Sketchy Guy says only Tom can come with him. So far this episode isn't making sense; this seems more like a job for narcotics than Jump Street.

Anyway, Tom gets out of the car. Booker drives down the street to park and wait for him. He goes up to a car where Fuller is sitting and tells him that Tom is with the dealer. Cap'n Rufus tells him to get in.

On the street, Tom follows Sketchy Guy to where he keeps his drug stash. A large group of kids marches down the sidewalk, all dressed in similar clothes and black berets. "Not these guys, let's go!" shouts Sketchy Guy as the kids give chase. He and Tom don't make it far before they're caught. The kids shove them up against a pair of newspaper dispensers. 

One boy acts as spokesman for the group: No drug dealing on their streets; Sketchy Guy and Tom are under citizen's arrest and will be restrained until the police arrive. Booker and the captain watch from their car. Cap'n Rufus says they'll bail Tom out of trouble and protect his cover, then mutters, "Thanks a lot for nothin', guys."

Tom leaves a holding cell and finds Sketchy Guy waiting for him at the front desk. He explains that his brother came to bail him out. They leave the station. Sketchy Guy agrees to let Tom try to move some heavy weight for him. He also threatens to kill the vigilante kids, referring to them as Rangers. Specifically, he wants to go after Steve Muniz, who is presumably the ringleader. 

Cap'n Rufus asks Tom if he thinks the threat against the Rangers was real; Tom does. The Rangers are apparently some kind of sanctioned neighborhood watch brought into Hastings after the local precinct was shut down due to budget cuts; the group headquarters out of a donated storefront. 

Harry agrees with what they're doing; in addition to patrols, they teach CPR classes and escort the elderly around. Judy doesn't like the Rangers. Fuller tells Tom to maintain his cover with Sketchy Guy (Campos). Judy and Harry are to keep tabs on the Rangers.

Judy practices self-defense moves at the Rangers' Headquarters. She's been outfitted with an official Street Rangers T-shirt. It's Harry's turn to spar next; naturally, because he's Asian, he's good at karate. The leader Steve reminds them that they have patrol that night, but only 2 cars. Harry offers the use of his. Steve turns to his middle school-aged brother Raphie and praises him for finally recruiting someone with a car. 

Outside on the street, Steve lectures about the types of neighborhood decline that they're trying to prevent. Judy wants to know how they're supposed to protect themselves. Steve says, "Attitude is your best weapon. And if you carry a weapon on patrol, you're out. The goofs who do the shooting don't know what they're doing, so they miss by a mile. They never get more than one shot off before 3 or 4 of us are on 'em." This jackass is gonna get some kid hurt; it's just a matter of when. 

Judy asks, "Why not just be a cop?" Steve explains that paperwork and courts make cops ineffective. While there's some argument to be made for that, this is still a stupid, dangerous alternative. 

It isn't long before they're accosted by a group of what appear to be pimps or drug dealers. One wants to fix Raphie's hair. He pulls out what looks at first like a knife but turns out to be a switchblade comb. "Y'all are outsiders here," the dealer/pimp says, "And that's where we want you. Out." Steve assures the others it was just talk and barks for them to get back in formation.

Raphie, Judy, and Harry go into a nearby store to grab sodas. Judy's Ranger uniform feels like a target on her back. Raphie, clearly brainwashed by his older brother, parrots, "A weapon is just a false sense of security." A burglar alarm sounds across the street. Raphie takes off running; Harry and Judy follow to save the kid from himself.

Sure enough, Raphie gets punched and knocked to the ground by the robber. Harry steps in to take care of the problem. The robber punches Judy. A nearby store owner appears, armed with a baseball bat. Harry gets the robber on the ground just as a police car pulls up.

The store owner shouts that the man has robbed him 4 times. Every time, it was the Rangers who caught the thief, not the police. "You kids may have just handed this guy a free walk," says the cop. Steve shrugs and says they'll just take care of it again when the robber gets out of jail. 

"Maybe you can take care of yourself, but what about these kids?" the cop asks Steve, "How are you gonna feel when you hafta tell a parent their kid's head was cracked open by a gangbanger?" Steve is convinced that won't happen. "You ready for one of those conversations?" the cop presses, "3:00 in the morning, the parents hysterical. They're no fun, believe me."

The cops ask the store owner if he wants to file charges against the robber. The moronic robbery victim would rather complain about the cops than see anything done that doesn't involve teenagers risking their lives. The Rangers exchange hugs and high-fives.

At a different police station, Cap'n Rufus picks Doug's brain about Campos. Doug remembers him being aggressive, impatient and volatile. Campos would consider killing someone to protect his turf just part of doing business. Tom goes into the back room to collect buy money. Rufus turns to Doug: "I've got a budget to put out on Friday. Am I still keeping your name on my payroll?" Doug likes working for Intelligence, but he still looks conflicted.

Tom meets Campos in front of the 24-hour video store that was robbed earlier in the episode. The drug dealer that hassled the Rangers joins them. The three head around the corner to do business. Raphie and Steve have been watching from inside the store. Raphie thinks they should call a cop. Steve is dismissive: "It's almost dinnertime. You think you can find one?" If there's a restaurant nearby, odds are good. The Rangers leave the video store.

Booker and Cap'n Rufus watch from a car as Tom makes the drug buy. When the parties involved see Raphie and Steve coming, they scatter. The boys chase them. "We should get some help, Steve," Raphie says as they crawl under a partially-open garage-style door. Steve ignores him and they continue to creep through the warehouse.

Steve sneaks up on Campos and grabs him in a bearhug. Booker and Fuller enter the warehouse. A gunshot rings out. Cap'n Rufus shouts, "Police! Who's there? Identify yourself!" He motions for Booker to go clear the room in the opposite direction. Rufus follows the sound of unintelligible words and crying; he finds Steve on the floor. 

Booker comes into the room with Raphie at his elbow. Steve stops talking and breathing. Raphie is horrified and keeps screaming his brother's name. Booker puts a comforting arm around the kid's shoulders.

In what's probably the homicide division squadroom, the assigned detective says they'll question Campos if they can find him. Raphie didn't actually see the shooting, so all they have is motive. Cap'n Rufus thinks their best bet to stop Campos is nailing him on a drug charge. 

At Ranger HQ, an unnamed Ranger gives a speech about loss and police ineffectiveness in front of the rest of the Rangers and some neighborhood residents. "We gotta find the son of a bitch who shot Steve and drop him!" a curly-haired Ranger shouts. Others cheer their agreement. The leader asks Raphie what he wants done. "I only want one thing," says Ralphie, "To see that his dying has some meaning, to do the right thing. To keep the neighborhoods our neighborhoods and to keep what happened to him from ever happening again...The killer of my brother must be found and he must be found by us, not the police." More cheers. In the back of the room, Judy and Harry exchange looks.

The Rangers march down the street in formation; each member now carries a pair of handcuffs. Raphie orders everyone to split into groups of two and start asking questions. There's a montage of the kids accosting passersby and owners of local businesses. Judy has paired herself with Raphie and says maybe people really don't know who killed Steve. Raphie thinks people are lying and Judy can go home if she doesn't like how he's handling things. Judy suggests the Rangers work with the cops. Raphie's reaction is predictable.

When Raphie runs across the street, Judy follows. Raphie almost gets hit by a passing police car. The cops get out and ask if he has a death wish. "I'm sorry about your brother, but you can't be rousting people," says the mustached cop from earlier. The rest of the Rangers arrive. "Just remember where your job ends and our job begins," says the cop.

"You're late," Tom says as Campos joins him at a restaurant. Campos tells him the Rangers have been harassing his clients about where he is. He refuses to sell Tom any more drugs until the problem blows over and leaves the restaurant without ordering anything. 

Once outside, the Rangers spot Campos and chase him into an alley. Campos denies shooting Steve and gets punched in the face by two Rangers for his trouble. A third Ranger joins in. Sirens approach. Raphie picks up a gun that fell out of Campos' pocket. The cops take Campos away.

In an interrogation room, a bruised Campos says he didn't do it. He thinks the Rangers are a threat to the neighborhood and wants them stopped. "Mr. Campos, the police aren't in the business of protecting drug dealers," Fuller informs him. Campos has another problem: the unregistered gun the police found in the alley is the same caliber that killed Steve. They'll run ballistics tests to see if it's the murder weapon. Campos says it's not his gun.

Raphie holds court at Ranger HQ, telling the others, "A lot of people are scared to testify in court, but it's our job."

Tom and Campos meet by the video store. Campos is sure he won't be tied to the murder; his prints aren't on the gun because Raphie touched it and the Rangers assaulted him. He picks up a payphone and waves to a police car parked down the street. "Know how work the system and the system'll work for you," he advises Tom. 

The Rangers make their way toward the payphones, but the police car cuts them off. Sidebar: Aren't these kids ever in school? Keeping a neighborhood safe is a 24-hour gig, but I'm sure their parents would be pissed about a truant officer coming around.

Mustache Cop advises the Rangers that Campos took out a restraining order against them. He shoos the kids back to the other side of the street. The store owner comes out to yell at the police for protecting a drug dealer and not him.

Raphie makes a speech about the police caring more about the drug dealer than a store owner tired of getting robbed. "The message to the dealers must come from us or we let the neighborhood down," says Raphie. They'll hunt down Campos, whatever it takes. "Then we're just a bunch of vigilantes," says Judy. I'm pretty sure Raphie knows that already.

"Are we just bullies? Is that what Steve worked so hard for?" asks Judy. Another Ranger wants to throw Judy and Harry out, but Raphie stops him and admits that Judy's right. He wants to cooperate with the police; anyone who doesn't want to can leave. The others protest loudly at this and get louder when Raphie cancels patrols. He's taking Harry and Judy with him to talk to the police.

Raphie pulls aside his unnamed second-in-command and mutters for him to go on patrol anyway. "Don't do anything 'til I get there," he adds. 

Tom's Mustang pulls up to the phone bank Campos frequents. Tom gets out. Campos has clients meeting him elsewhere and offers Tom $100 to answer the payphone. Tom offers to go with him instead. The potential customers in front of the video store close in on Campos. The one in the fedora sucker-punches Campos in the stomach; the other Rangers throw him and Tom into a van. Fedora says, "Don't do anything until Raphie gets back." 

Cap'n Rufus is worried because he tried to call the payphone several times and Tom isn't answering; he hasn't checked in either. Judy has had a change of heart and doesn't think the Rangers are vigilantes. Neither does Harry. Booker tells them Tom's Mustang got towed from Hastings after sitting on the street all night. Fuller thinks the Rangers know where Campos and Tom are.

At the Muniz house, Harry and Judy talk to Raphie's mother and uncle. The relatives both say Raphie wouldn't hurt anyone. Judy asks if they know where he is. "He's at school," Mrs. Muniz replies. Harry tells her that Raphie never went that morning. The uncle says in a completely unconvincing tone, "We don't know where he is, honest." Then just as casually, he mentions that his gun is missing.

Judy asks the Ranger second-in-command where Raphie is; he doesn't know. Harry flashes his badge and says, "We think you do." The kid admits that the Rangers kidnapped Campos and "that creep he's doing business with" to scare them. Judy informs him that Tom is an undercover cop. "He's planning on scaring them with his uncle's gun," Harry adds. The kid repeats that they don't carry weapons. Harry leans across the desk and grabs him by the shirt, asking where they are.

Tom and Campos are bound and gagged in a warehouse with Rangers standing guard. The same green van they were kidnapped in pulls up. Raphie gets out. "We got a couple more people coming, then we'll get this show on the road," he tells his captives. He takes his uncle's gun out of the back of his pants and says, "Guys, meet your jury."

Cap'n Rufus drives down the road. Judy is upset with herself for getting played by the Rangers. The car phone rings; the ballistics lab has conveniently managed to find the serial number on the gun. 

In the warehouse, Raphie tells Tom and Campos they stand accused of selling drugs. Tom tries to get up and leave, but falls flat on his face. "You're out of order!" shouts Raphie. He turns to Campos. "My brother died because of you, man. Because of your greed." The grandiose speech continues. I'm so sick of this episode, which is surprising considering how much I love The Boondock Saints. Same speeches, same concepts, but much better execution there.

Raphie strips off his jacket and Street Rangers shirt, leaving just the thermal underneath. He puts the gun to Campos' head, cocks the hammer, and announces, "I find you guilty of the murder of our city and the death of my brother." Cap'n Rufus, Judy, and Harry arrive. Judy tells Raphie to put the gun down. 

Judy reveals the truth about what happened to Raphie's brother: "We traced it, Raphie. It was your uncle's gun that killed Steve. You were carrying it on patrol." Raphie more or less blames Steve, telling her how badly Steve wanted Campos off the street. Raphie saw Campos holding a gun on Steve; he tried to shoot the dealer. But he aimed poorly and pulled the trigger too early, killing Steve instead. He starts crying. Tom and the rest of the Rangers are stunned.

The episode ends with Campos getting busted by Booker, Cap'n Rufus, and Tom for dealing drugs.

Case #3.01: "Fun With Animals"

In a high school metal shop class, some genius kid is building a portable electric chair. It can run on household current or a car cigarette lighter. But not to worry, it's really only wired to a couple of radio batteries (so the kid says, anyway). 

The boys debate on who they will test their invention on when the teacher goes out for a smoke break. They mention the possibility of a Jewish boy, but decided on a boy named Tommy Hamburg that they call Hamburger. Hamburger turns out to be Tom. Once Tom sits down, the boys strap him to the chair while he protests, "This isn't funny, Dennis." The ringleader, Dennis, flips the switch and nothing happens, much to Tom's relief. When they release Tom from the chair, he punches Dennis in the stomach. 

Later, Tom leaves the school (Westside High)and Dennis almost hits him with his car. Dennis asks, "Are we gonna check in with Fuller or can I go grab a beer?" Looks like this asshole is the newest addition to Jump Street. Theme song.

The Chapel squadroom is buzzing with activity. Looks like the program got renewed after all. Harry arrives, now sporting a ponytail. "It's good to see you out of the milk carton," he greets Judy. She's chopped off the majority of her hair, not a good look for her. Dennis leers at her. Harry introduces her to Dennis, last name Booker, which he will be known as from now on. 

Blowfish enters and high-fives Harry. Booker sits down and Judy tells him, "That's Penhall's desk." The big guy is absent. Harry says that Doug is still working Intelligence and "I don't think he's coming back." Judy tells Booker that a desk near hers is empty and he thinks he could "get used to that view." 

Tom is talking to Cap'n Rufus: "You've partnered me with a psychopath with a license to terrorize. He hangs kids out windows, hits on every girl in school, and teaches kids how to build electric chairs. Who gave this guy a badge?" My sentiments exactly. Tom and Booker are trying to find someone who painted racist graffiti and flattened the tires of a visiting sports team's bus. "Any suspects?" Rufus wants to know. Tom says, "Besides my partner?"

Cap'n Rufus has to call for Booker twice because he's preoccupied with flirting with Judy. Rufus tells Booker about Tom's suspicions. Booker doesn't think the kids he pals around with are racists. "They make fun of blacks, Jews, Hispanics, people with glasses, whatever," Tom points out. Booker repeats that kids aren't racists, just bullies. Cap'n Rufus stops the bickering and tells them to get along and solve the case.

Booker cuts in line at the cafeteria's taco day. He and the gang bully an assortment of kids, including a white boy with glasses. Booker sexually harasses a black girl; like Judy, this girl is having none of it. She's more vocal about it, however. One of the bullies beckons Booker, Tom, and a mulleted kid named Marty over. "If you really wanna scare the broad, you gotta do it the right way," he says, pulling up his shirt to reveal a gun in his waistband. At his locker later, Tom sees Booker bothering the same girl. 

Tom goes to visit Doug in a shabby apartment where his former partner is on a stakeout. Doug has grown a goatee and is looking out the window with a telescope. Tom sounds a little jealous when Doug mentions his new partner Fitz. Doug hears that Tom and Booker aren't getting along. Tom asks Doug to look into Booker's background. Doug isn't supposed to, but agrees. Tom wants to know when Doug is coming back to Jump Street. Doug isn't sure. His new captain thinks he's great at what he does and Doug likes the intelligence division.

In the parking lot the next day, Booker is sunning himself on the hood of a car. Tom confronts him about not checking in at the Chapel. "I overslept," Booker says with a weasel-like grin. When they go into school, there's a commotion. A girl in gym shorts and a T-shirt shouts, "Tell the principal to call the police! And send the nurse right away!" 

A crowd has gathered around the girls' locker room. Tom and Booker press in for a better look. Someone has painted racial slurs on the shower wall. The black girl Booker had been harassing lies naked on the floor; another girl covers her with a towel. The girl's face is badly bruised.

Cap'n Rufus arrives at the home of a black woman where reporters are camped out on the porch. Booker, Tom, and company watch from across the street. "Hey, homegirl! Why ain't you home watchin' Cosby?" Booker taunts. Rufus gets up to the porch and won't comment on whether this incident is related to the bus graffiti. 

The loudmouth on the porch is Councilwoman Travers, who is shooting her mouth off about racial violence. She doesn't want the victim to be "harassed" by the police. She demands to know when Cap'n Rufus will have a comment: "After the next rape? Or maybe the rape after that?" Rufus reminds her that she's undermining a police investigation. Booker and his friends begin to pelt the reporters and councilwoman with food, then run away. A jelly doughnut splatters on Rufus's jacket.  

Tom and Booker discuss the case. Judy wants to be part of the investigation, not on racial grounds, but simply because a 16-year-old was brutally raped. "We don't know it was a rape," says Cap'n Rufus. Booker parrots that at her. "You probably think she enjoyed the whole thing," Judy says. The department wants the case handed over to the major case division. Tom asks for more time; he thinks they're close to finding out who did it. 

Cap'n Rufus can't give them more time. They're staying on the original bus graffiti case. However, they won't be able to access Major Crime's files about the girl's attack. Rufus asks if they know anything about people throwing jelly doughnuts the day before. 

Booker tells Judy that he didn't mean to be insensitive (a likely story). He claims he's just trying to keep the case in perspective. She buys his apology.

Booker asserts that he's doing all the real police work on their case. He adds, "Those boys may be jerks, but at least they know how to have a good time." In the cafeteria, Booker, Tom, and the bullies discuss the previous day's doughnut exploits. Marty brags that they were on the news. They plan on where to meet to cause mayhem that night. 

At a bar/pool hall, Booker wonders if they should ask Cap'n Rufus to send them with backup. Tom wants to wait and see what's being planned first. Booker doesn't think the kids would have the stomach to burn Tracy (the rape victim) with cigarettes. Tom says suspiciously, "I didn't read anything about any cigarette burns." Booker shrugs: "Cigarette burns, bruises, whatever." 

Tom comes in to Doug's garage. Doug is lightly coated with grease and fixing his motorcycle. He has information on the newest member of Jump Street: Booker went to the academy the same year as Tom, switched divisions a few times, and had minor discipline problems. "I think he raped Tracy Edwards," says Tom. He also thinks Booker is crazy and racist.

Doug points out that Booker isn't the only bigot on the force. "He has a thing for black girls," Tom says, "He was hitting on Judy." Doug doesn't think that proves anything, except that "he's heterosexual"; Judy is pretty and lots of guys flirt with her. Booker strikes me as more predatory than flirtatious.

Booker lays the blame on Tracy's mother's boyfriend, a younger guy with a history of violence toward women. "Everybody blames the wicked stepfather," says Doug. The mother's boyfriend can't be a suspect because he has a solid alibi. 

"He [Booker] let something slip," Tom goes on, "Someone burned Tracy with cigarettes." It wasn't in the police report or news coverage. How else would he know? They can't get into the files kept by the assigned detective. "Booker's Internal Affairs," Doug explains, "He's investigating Jump Street." The city wants to make sure Tom isn't guilty of entrapping the kids. Doug couldn't tell anyone because it's classified. As Tom starts to leave, Doug warns him to be careful.

Late that night, Tom and Booker sit in Booker's parked car. An ancient rusty pickup truck approaches with its lights off. The kids driving it stop and pull a large wooden cross out of the truck's bed. Three guesses what they're gonna do with it...

Booker hands Tom the matchbook. "Hamburger, light it!" Jim hisses. Tom does. Booker grins creepily. Marty and his merry band of future Klansmen hustle away. 

The kids, including Booker, have their mugshots taken. They're put in a holding cell. Tom shows them his badge, reads off the list of charges, and informs them that they'll be tried as adults. "4 of us and one of you, narc," snots Booker. Tom grabs him by his jacket and slams him up against the wall. He calls for a guard to take Booker to interrogation, along with the other two suspects.

One of the suspects, Marty, wants to call his dad and doesn't want to talk. Tom says teenagers tend to finger the guy they're least afraid of, which happens to be him. Tom asks about Tracy. Marty bellows that Booker probably did it: "I saw him follow Tracy to the showers." Tom comes tells Fuller that Marty didn't rape Tracy. 

The next day, Tom sits outside Booker's building, waiting for him to leave. When he does, Tom scales the fire escape and breaks into Booker's apartment. In his dresser drawer, Tom finds Tracy's case file.

Tom questions the school janitor. "I seen him and that colored girl gettin' hot and heavy in the bushes," the old man says, "You ask me, she had it comin'." He refers to Tracy as a "little whore." 

Tom visits Doug's stakeout spot again, where Doug is making himself a sandwich. Tom announces that he knows who raped Tracy: Booker. He tells Doug about breaking in to get the files. Doug can't believe what Tom did. Booker's car was seen in the school parking lot and he was spotted in the bushes with Tracy. "You're not gonna be no hero draggin' one of your own down," says Doug. 

Cap'n Rufus tells Judy and Booker that Jump Street's help has been requested because Tracy isn't talking. Tom walks in late. He shows Fuller the file on Tracy and tells him where he found it. "What were you doing in Booker's apartment?" asks Fuller. He also wants to know how Booker got another detective's file. "He's Internal Affairs," Tom explains, "He's trying to get us for entrapping kids." 

Tom asks where Booker was the night of Tracy's attack. "I was busy," Booker says coolly. Tom lays out all the evidence he has and finishes by stating, "He raped her." Judy stuns everyone by saying, "No, he didn't. I picked Dennis up after school and he was with me all night." What in the hell is Judy doing making out in the bushes with a creep like Booker? We all have lapses in judgment, but she didn't even seem to enjoy the attention from Booker.

Outside the Chapel, Judy advises Tom to straighten things out with Booker: "He could have your badge for what you did." Tom is still firm that Booker's racism isn't just an act. Judy thinks Tom is jealous. (So do I). She says that they went to a movie and talked, but nothing else happened.

Tom lightly dozes on his couch later and is interrupted by a knock at the door. It's Booker. He's not happy about Tom exposing him as Internal Affairs, but he wants Tom's help in finding Tracy's rapist. Tom voices his opinion that what Internal Affairs does (setting up cops to do the wrong thing) is no different than the entrapment they're accusing him of. Booker doesn't intend to get Tom in trouble for the break-in. Tom agrees to go back on the case. "But I'm not helping you," he states flatly, "I'm helping Tracy Edwards."

Tom and Booker enter the darkened school hallway and go to the crime scene: the girls' locker room. "When you knew about the cigarette burns, that's when I thought you did it," says Tom. Booker explains that after school, he just apologized to Tracy for giving her a hard time. He remembers seeing Tracy get upset in the cafeteria, yelling at someone he couldn't see. The only person who can tell them what the argument was about is the victim herself.

At Tracy's house, Mrs. Edwards tells Booker and Tom not to bother her daughter. They explain all they want to do is help her. Mrs. Edwards concedes, but stipulates that only one of them can talk to Tracy. Tom goes into Tracy's room and tells Tracy who he really is. He's done everything he can to find out who attacked her, but he's out of leads and doesn't know how else to find out who did it.

Tracy turns away and says, "Leave me alone and let this go away." Tom gently tells her that it won't go away; if the police have to subpoena her, she won't be treated like a victim. (Sadly, that probably was true in the 1980's).

"Did anybody rape you?" Tom asks. Tracy shakes her head no. Tom wants to know who she fought with in the cafeteria. Some girls Tracy knows were upset because Tracy had slept with one of their boyfriends. On purpose or not, who knows? We see in flashback that the fight continued in the locker room and a girl named Jackie put gum in Tracy's hair.

Tracy narrates, "When I hit her, they jumped on me and they kept hitting me and hitting me." They also cut her hair, ripped her clothes off, and burned her. Tom asks why she didn't tell anyone this in the first place. "I didn't know what to do," says Tracy, "I stayed there all night trying to make it go away. I don't want you to arrest them. I just want it to go away."

There's suddenly a jarring change of scenery: a strip club. Booker explains that Internal Affairs loaned him to Jump Street because he looks young. He wants to be partnered with Tom again, even though he knows that's the last thing in the world Tom wants. 

End of episode.

Penhall-isms: Best of Season 2

  1. "A Penhall cover comes with a lifetime guarantee."
  2. Doug: "Personally, I hope there's a heaven or somethin' where I can still catch Monday Night Football."
    Tom: "Always the intellectual."
  3. (when asked what vitamins he does) "Did Wilma this morning and I'm thinkin' about doin' Fred or Dino tomorrow."
  4. (on the phone when he and Dorothy argue about what vegetable to serve with meatloaf) "Peas are fine. Carrots, lizard eggs, it doesn't matter!"
  5. (about the time he dated identical twins) "I was madly in love...or at least filled with lust."
  6. "According to the Penhall rules of dating, it's not the next day 'til the sun actually rises." 
  7. "I'm not married. I'm in hell."

Case #2.22: "School's Out"

It's a quiet day in the Chapel's squadroom; Tom's trying to toss balls of paper through a basketball hoop, Judy's reading a magazine, and a nameless rookie is sleeping in his chair. Doug is trying to do a crossword and asks, "What's a 5-letter word for 'perfect?'" Judy answers, "Mel Gibson." Tom points out that has 9 letters. Harry provides the correct answer ("ideal").

Judy sighs and tosses down her magazine. She's bored; Tom suggests calling it a day. It's too early in the morning to quit and Tom has a case. "I'm not on a case," he grumps, "I'm looking for a kid who blows up toilet bowls." Have you interviewed Fred and George Weasely yet? The quartet of cops debate on faking the flu so they can have a picnic in the park. Harry provides another answer to Doug's crossword. Tom asks how he got so good. Harry says, "The answer's right here on page 29."

Cap'n Rufus arrives, takes in the scene, and clears his throat. "I realize you're all hard at work, so I'll make this brief," he starts. The powers that be have that the Jump Street team will be shut down for the summer, just like real high school. Everyone will get vacation time and "have the opportunity to work in a variety of different departments, police and city programs. You'll be given priority for any department you're interested in." This speech makes you wonder why Metro Police rookies aren't lining up at the Chapel doors to join the team.

Harry asks when they'll be coming back to their normal assignment; Cap'n Rufus has been told around Labor Day, just before school starts. He'll be posting a list of available summer jobs later. Harry points out that Rufus didn't say for sure that they'd be coming back by Labor Day. The captain's face shifts uncomfortably and admits that the future for Jump Street is uncertain. City accountants are deciding whether the program costs more to run than it's worth, even after the work they've done the last 2 years.

Harry remains confused: "The mayor loves us. We're his pet project, he's always saying that." Cap'n Rufus has scheduled a meeting with city administrators, but he's not optimistic about the outcome. He has a feeling that the accountants have already made up their minds. Theme song.

Tom is sleeping his way through a lecture on the JFK assassination when another toilet explodes. The students laugh and high-five as the teacher says, "The mad bomber's struck again." Tom isn't amused. As the bell rings, the teacher adds calmly, "You know the routine." The students make a mad dash out the doors. Once outside, one kid jumps on his skateboard and starts showing off. 

Tom tells Cap'n Rufus that another M-80 was flushed down a toilet. "Any suspects?" Rufus inquires. Tom nods...half the senior class. "Put Penhall on this," says Tom, "He loves hangin' out in bathrooms." I can't figure out if that's a gay joke or not. Cap'n Rufus goes off on a tangent about how hard it is to get these darn kids to work during the spring. Tom ignores his boss by answering the phone. 

At the table, Doug reads over the list of summer jobs. He's intrigued by the idea of getting on the SWAT team or antiterrorism task force; Judy is interested in community relations. Tom thinks any of them sound good and asks if they're sick of always going to high school. Doug mutters darkly, "You sound like Dorothy."

Dorothy and Doug ride through a neighborhood in a BMW convertible that's being driven by another woman; its vanity plate reads "CYNTHIA." Doug is perched on the backseat while Dorothy rides shotgun. Cynthia parks and asks what Doug drives. He responds, "A hog." Dorothy adds that they're car shopping.

They've parked in front of a house and walk through the gate in the white picket fence. The house has matching white siding, dark blue shutters, and a small porch; it's really quite cute. Cynthia shows them into what looks like the living room. "This is one of the most adorable little houses on the your price range," she says. Doug isn't impressed: "This whole place could fit in my loft."

He reluctantly follows the women to the guest bathroom, which Cynthia says has "the original tile, barnyard motif." Doug looks down at the floor and says, "What are those animals down there doin'?" Doug's head just about scrapes the ceiling. Cynthia and Dorothy leave to explore the upstairs portion of the house.

A bureaucrat repeats to Cap'n Rufus that the current plan for Jump Street is still to shut down for summer and reopen in the fall. Cap'n Rufus points out, "We ran straight through last summer and we still had plenty of work to do." The bureaucrat says that taking a summer break will be cost-effective. Rufus tells him about another police program he worked for that was reclassified, shut down, and never reactivated. The bureaucrat tells Rufus that Jump Street hasn't been reclassified and the captain looks relieved...until the pencil pusher says, "We don't use that word anymore. You've been 'deprioritized.'" 

Judy is interviewed by a guy named Dan Finger. He tells Judy that she's an impressive candidate who could go far in community relations. Judy thanks him and politely says she's only interested in working there for the summer because she's attached to Jump Street. Dan butters her up more: "The department is starved for well-groomed, articulate officers who can speak to the public, the news media, and even the city council. Don't take this summer job too lightly; you could end up working for the mayor's office."

Back in history class, Tom is napping again and so are the rest of the students. The teacher notices and hints that some of this lecture may be on the final. He strikes up a deal: If the class can pay attention for the rest of the period, he'll give back all the squirt guns he's recently confiscated. The picture on my Hulu feed chooses this moment to go out; all I can hear is students shouting, water being sprayed, and the teacher telling them to stop.

When the video feed picks back up, we're in the school cafeteria. Unfortunately, the picture is still not working right so I can only offer what happens in the dialogue. New York accent kid talks about how he admires the so-called Mad Bomber. The picture moves again as Tom asks if he can meet the bomber. New York Accent doubts it; the bomber is hard to find and flies solo. New York Accent (NYA) looks meaningfully toward a nervous-looking boy with slicked-back hair. 

Tom asks if Slick Hair (Jimmy) could be the bomber. NYA doesn't think Jimmy is cool enough to do something like that. Jimmy goes over to the cafeteria line and shoves a few items in his backpack. "I mean, look at him, he steals food," says NYA. Tom leaves and follows Jimmy down the hall. 

Tom opens a door that leads to the school basement/boiler room and cautiously makes his way downstairs. Jimmy weaves his way around a maze of pipes, a path he's clearly taken many times. Tom tracks Jimmy by the sound of his footsteps. Around a corner, Tom stumbles upon a mattress covered with old sheets and a blanket and the backpack full of cafeteria food. Cardboard boxes hold other belongings. 

It appears that poor Jimmy has been living in the school for quite some time. For some reason, I can't help but think of those urban legends about mental patients living in the basement long after the asylum closed.

Harry is on the phone with the city finance department and getting nowhere fast. He hangs up in frustration and warns Doug, "You better use both sides of that paper. We're not made of money." Doug tells Harry to choke on it, but not at all in his usual jovial manner. Judy comes in, ecstatic about her community relations job. The department is looking for people to talk to the community about a new program. 

"And they picked you?" Doug asks rudely. Judy comes back with, "Eat your heart out, Penhall. While you're riding around on that hot motorcycle handing out parking tickets, I'll be talking to the media in the air conditioning."

Doug's thinking about applying to the intelligence unit. "As what? A paperweight?" Judy snarks. Jeez, a dumb joke and a fat joke rolled into one. Before Doug has a chance to respond to that, Cap'n Rufus comes in. He tells them about the new buzzword "deprioritized." The program could be killed if the department doesn't have enough discretionary funding for them. Cap'n Rufus advises everyone to think very carefully about the summer jobs they pick, just in case. 

Harry presents the boss with arrest efficiency reports, hoping they'll help their case; he should have the budgets by the next day. Didn't sound like he was getting anywhere on that phone call. Harry plans on doing his own budget projection. 

A bald, bespectacled man with a British accent inspects an outlet. He asks Blowfish if it has enough juice to run a hotplate and a TV. The Brit is apparently in charge of looking after the Chapel over the summer. Blowfish isn't happy about this. 

A car goes down the road with Dorothy behind the wheel. She's dressed up and Doug is wearing a suit. He gripes that having dinner with people makes him uncomfortable. "What is wrong with you?!" Dorothy snaps. Doug explains that when people have you over for dinner, "they take it so seriously." He's worried that the other couple will laugh at him trying to act proper. Given that his father was a drunk, Doug probably never learned table manners.

The other couple turns out to be real-estate agent Cynthia and her husband Steve. When Steve offers his hand for a handshake, Doug slaps a bottle of wine into it. Cynthia puts the wine in the refrigerator and offers margaritas, saying Steve's are the best in town. "I learned when we were on vacation in Puerto Vallarta," says Steve, subtly playing the we-have-more-money-than-you-so-we're-better card. Doug would rather have a beer. Cynthia gets him a bottle of imported dark ale. Same thing, right?

Cynthia mutters to herself about getting a glass. "I'll take it in a bottle," Doug says. Cynthia's phony smile becomes even more strained as she hands it over. The bottle has some kind of fancy cap on it that Doug can't figure out how to open. He awkwardly puts the bottle down on the counter. 

Steve is putting the final touches on their dinner: veal tortellini. While admiring something that looks like an espresso maker, Doug accidentally breaks off the handle and it goes flying across the room. "It's okay," Steve says in a tone that shows it's really not.

The couples eat at a candlelit table in absolute silence. Doug is barely able to hide his smirk at Cynthia and Steve's pretentious mannerisms; Dorothy glares at him from across the table. He can't hold back a chuckle. "What's so funny, Doug?" asks Steve. Doug doesn't answer, except to start cackling when the other couple continues to act stuffy. 

Doug passes off the reason for his laughter as "a really dumb, stupid, dirty joke I heard earlier." Steve wants to hear it and so does Cynthia. Doug looks at one of them, then the other, clearly trying to stall for time. Dorothy is giving him a positively evil look now, so Doug declines to tell the joke, saying it's too disgusting to tell over dinner.

Steve mentions the house Doug and Dorothy want to rent; if they bought it, the interest would be tax-deductible. Cynthia brags about her husband's skill as a financial advisor. Steve could recommend investments to boost Doug's net worth, then winds up having to explain that net worth "is what you're worth in cash and properties." "42 bucks," Doug says, "That's my net worth. It's what's in my wallet. Well, 40 bucks since I paid for the wine." Dorothy could probably breathe fire at this point.

Steve asks what Doug does in the police department. "I work undercover in high schools," Doug explains. Cynthia kind of purses her lips and asks if he pretends to be a student. Doug is like "yup, basically." Steve thinks it's weird that Doug gets paid to hang out with high schoolers. Doug says that he's switching to the intelligence division for the summer.

On the drive home, Dorothy is quiet and clearly pissed off. "Come on, Dodo, I'm sorry," Doug pleads. Dodo? What a charming nickname, but yet, it suits her. He thinks dinner was awkward because Cynthia and Steve are old. "Doug, they're only 2 years older than we are!" Dorothy says, "The difference is they live like adults and we live like the Three Stooges." "We live just fine," Doug says defensively. And I don't blame him; they have a nice loft and they've never really made it clear what Dorothy does for a living. Plus she moved in uninvited

In the school locker room, Jimmy is getting ready for bed. He leaves for the basement with his toothbrush and towel. When he arrives in his makeshift bedroom, Tom is waiting for him. He asks how long Jimmy has been living there and remarks that Jimmy could blow up the whole school from down here. Jimmy gets upset and tells Tom to leave, but Tom refuses. He restrains the kid when Jimmy tries to go after him. 

Jimmy insists he's not crazy. Tom asks the obvious question: "Then why are you living in a boiler room?" Jimmy's answer is simple: "'Cause I got no place else to live." Tom is stunned. Jimmy's mother ran off with a drunk and he has no other relatives. He asks why Tom is in the basement and if Tom is the bomber. Tom thought Jimmy was. Jimmy says that wouldn't make sense; he loses water for a day and a half every time someone sets off an M-80. He asks Tom not to tell anyone he's there. Tom hesitates before nodding in agreement.

Blowfish slides down the Chapel's firepole and sees British Janitor fiddling with the outlets. He goes into the office, demanding something be done. Cap'n Rufus is working on getting Blowfish the job of looking after the chapel. On his way out, Blowfish almost runs into Doug, who's coming in to talk to Cap'n Rufus.

Doug wants advice and opens with a loaded question: "Because I spend so much time undercover around high school kids, do you think that makes me act...immature?" He's unsure that he'd be good at intelligence. Cap'n Rufus offers to write Doug a recommendation. Doug thanks him and opens the office door in time to see a lightbulb explode. Blowfish yells, "Get the hell outta my fusebox!" 

In the locker room, Jimmy uses safety pins to adjust a pair of gym shorts that are clearly several waist sizes too big. He explains to Tom that he took them out of an open locker. Tom thinks the shorts are ridiculous (and he's right). He asks how Jimmy got used to being in school with no one else around. Jimmy shrugs. He spent a lot of time in the library and adds, "In 3 weeks, I graduate with straight A's. Last year, I was lucky to even pass." Tom says, "I don't think I'm gonna pass. I hate school."

Jimmy doesn't want to end up working in a doughnut factory like his mom, "coming home to some other drunk who's more stupid than me." Tom asks Jimmy if he wants to go for pizza after school, Tom's treat. Jimmy has to study for finals. 

Dan Finger has great news for Judy; she got the job. He thinks they can get her on the 5:00 news later in the month. Judy is thrilled. "Everyone in this department coveted that job. There's gonna be a little bit of resentment," Dan warns, "Be sure to address the mayor's wife as Mrs. Gentry and be careful with the makeup." 

In an elementary school classroom, the teacher tells her students they have a special visitor from the police department: Officer Milk Carton. The kids chorus: "HI, OFFICER MILK CARTON!" Judy shuffles in, dressed as what else? This isn't the greatest idea for a PR character. After all, police departments traditionally printed pictures of missing children on milk cartons. Photographers snap pictures of Judy.

Cap'n Rufus shows the efficiency reports and budget projections to two suits. The suit with curly hair tells Rufus he's wasting his time; the second suit (who happens to be the deputy police chief) wants to let him finish. The suits start to bicker. Rufus there to address the councilman's concerns. The councilman sneers, "You're here to save your job." Pretty sure they're not just gonna pink slip a captain without offering him a job in another department. 

The councilman says Jump Street violates the students' rights "through intimidation and entrapment." Cap'n Rufus lists the serious offenses his officers have helped stop: child pornography, gun running, drug dealing, and prostitution. 

In Dan's office, Judy's embarrassed about having to drive around the city dressed as a milk carton. Dan says, "Fine, then you tell the mayor's wife you're too good for her pet project." 

The gang eats pizza in the squadroom and Doug asks Judy about her new job. She lies that it's great. Cap'n Rufus comes in. And the damn video feed is out again, dialogue imposed over a frozen still from another scene. He tells Harry that the reports he put together made an impression. Cap'n Rufus advises them to get used to disappointment if they plan on staying in law enforcement. Doug adds that change is part of growing up. 

"Thank you, Mr. Maturity," Tom says. Doug belches and mutters, "Damn, I gotta stop doin' that." Tom tries to look on the bright side; the new assignments could be the best ones they've ever had.

A computer printout is now ready. It turns out that only one senior at the Mad Bomber's school has a record. "Good school. Maybe I'll buy in that district," says Doug. To Tom's surprise, the rap sheet belongs to Jimmy; he was arrested for car theft in Wisconsin and escaped from juvie there. Kind of makes you doubt his tale of woe.

In the boiler room, Tom pokes Jimmy awake and confronts the kid about his lies. Jimmy figures out Tom is a cop and asks, "Why didn't you bust me yesterday?" Tom wasn't looking for Jimmy; he was looking for the Mad Bomber. He tells Jimmy to get his stuff together. "No!" says the kid, "I'm not leaving here without my diploma!"

Tom accuses Jimmy of lying about his mom. Jimmy's mother did abandon him in a way by not bailing him out when he was arrested for stealing the car. Jimmy argues that he's not dangerous and begs Tom to let him graduate. 

Video feed out again, this time just a black screen. Someone congratulates Cap'n Rufus on his impressive proposal; Rufus hopes the councilman was impressed enough to save Jump Street. He's offered his own area command. Rufus asks for help with Blowfish's job.

We hear a door unlock. Doug is presumably at the house he and Dorothy looked at because she asks, "What's going on?" He says he has pizza for them and pours her some wine. "What are were doing here?" asks Dorothy. Doug explains, "This is where we live now. I told Cynthia we'd take it." Doug has another surprise: he got accepted to work Intelligence for the summer. 

Cap'n Rufus tells Tom to bring Jimmy in because Jimmy's a fugitive. Tom asks to stall the arrest and explains, "He's living in the school basement just so he can graduate." Rufus offers to play phone tag with the Wisconsin juvenile authorities until graduation. 

Dorothy thanks Doug for lunch. I hear Doug trying to teach some kids how to play some kind of sport in the street. I wish I could be more specific, but I can't because of stupid Hulu. Dorothy says she loves watching him with kids and that they don't have to take the house. She's been forcing him to make changes and she knows it's wrong.

Judy is teaching kids how to cross the street and how to handle strangers. A burglar alarm sounds and Judy chases a perp down the street (presumably still in her milk carton suit).

"Pomp and Circumstance" indicates the graduation scene has started. It turns out that the bomber is New York Accent Kid. Tom tells the kid that he's a cop. We probably see Jimmy get his diploma. New York Accent Kid is probably arrested.

Doug always looked forward to summer vacation, but now it feels weird. "We'll be back," says Harry, "The city needs us." Judy thinks they should all get together over the summer. For me, the episode ends there because the video feed still has not returned.

If anyone else has seen this one and can fill in the gaps, feel free to post that in the comments section.