If you weren't thinking that six minutes in, you weren't watching the same show as me. While Bullman was lucky, the shooting on Public Morals Season 1 Episode shook all the members of the PMD and their families, setting off a chain of events that will having a lasting impact.
While barely any progress was made on Mr. O's murder (not to mention the five other related homicides), and the overall story saw barely any advancement, "A Good Shooting" is my favorite episode to date. The reason for that is simple: character development.
The shooting allowed Christine, in particular, to show some depth. The character was finally allowed to be more than a broken record on the topic of moving, and it was great. Elizabeth Masucci handled the panic and fear of a cop's wife with skill and grace.
Christine's questioning of Terry was something we haven't seen before, and I liked that she held him accountable. It also opens the door for her to find out more about what's really going on with the PMD and the family's finances. The shooting was a wakeup call for her on a lot of levels.
But why is it your job?Christine Muldoon
I'd be really surprised if she doesn't take Mike up on his offer to find a house. Not only has it been something that she's been harping on for a while, but she clearly wasn't comfortable with all of Terry's responses. It has to have occurred to her that she and the kids would be better off in a house than dealing with a landlord if something were to happen to Terry.
Christine wasn't the only Muldoon showing growth. Although Terry is a well developed lead, the panic, fear, and rage that Edward Burns brought to the screen took him to new heights. So far, Terry's been the guy who keeps the PMD and his family in line, dealing with other people's problems in pragmatic, no nonsense kind of way.
But the Terry who screamed at O'Bannon for hesitating and showed his vulnerabilities to his wife was a new glorious creature. There is no logical reason for Muldoon to go after Davis himself, and going with a green cop like his cousin wasn't a very good idea.
Terry Muldoon: Next time, you pull the goddamn trigger and you shoot that son of a bitch. You got it?
Sean O'Bannon: Yeah, I said I got it.
Terry Muldoon: Hey, this is for your own goddamn good. You need to remove the part of your brain that questions things and just do it.
Poor Sean had a rough time of it. Not only did he get dragged into his cousin's vendetta, he found out that the girl he's been falling for isn't on the same page as him. Even after she told him her dream of being a journalist – which needs to happen if there's a second season, because it would up really up the ante on the PMD – I think he expected she would turn into Sally Homemaker if he decided to propose.
He's going to have to figure out how to live with her decisions if he wants to be with her, because Deirdre is not one to conform to expectations. And while we know the circumstances that led to his drunken assault on that (beautiful) convertible, Deirdre doesn't. I'm sure she doesn't find his ability to smash things with a pipe all that impressive.
Well, I don't believe that for a second, but more importantly, I don't need his approval or his permission, Sean.Deirdre Duffy
One of the things that struck me most about "A Good Shooting" is how relatable so many of the conversations and interactions are even 50 some years later. The opening scene with Jimmy, the girl talk between Deirdre and Babs, the conversation around Kaye's dining room table – any of those would fit in just as well if the show was set in the 2010's as they do set in the 1960's. That timelessness is one of the things that makes this show work.
Public Morals Season 1 Episode 7 has Muldoon once again walking a tightrope, balancing home and work, but it looks like we'll also get a look into Lt. King's life. The war between Rusty and Richie will escalate, leading me to question how long the cops can really ignore the growing body count. My personal wish is for Jimmy Shea to show up again so we learn a little more about that devious little eel. There's a lot to cover with only four episodes remaining, but I have faith Public Morals will pull it off.
Watch Public Morals online and tell us what you thought of "A Good Shooting" in the comments!
Elizabeth Harlow was a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She left the organization in October 2018.