Flashpoint: Broken Peace

Posted by: S.P. Young  //  September 24, 2012 @ 12:55am

Filed under: Recaps & Reviews

"This job is about getting into the subject's head."

"Broken Peace" is the first episode of the final season of Flashpoint. The plot is a deliberate parallel to the Pilot episode, wherein Scorpio, the Strategic Reponse Unit's last resort, had to be called to break up a family squabble gone wrong. Like in the Pilot, "Broken Peace" had an unstable and dangerous father who was threatening the mother. Where it differed, was the way the adult child (in this case, a daughter) intervened, and who got sniped.

In a flashback, the father, James, had been abusive towards the family, resulting in his wife and daughter leaving him. It was also revealed that he had blown his Restraining Orders , and that he was in financial trouble. The man was clearly a villain, hellbent on taking control, but unable to see himself as anything but the victim.

When things got ugly, Team One resorted to their usual approach of utilizing negotiation. What made this incident unique, was that they decided to get May, the daughter, to go in and to talk her father down. What they did not anticipate, was that May had been sick and tired of her father's abusive nature, and that she would take matters into her own hands.

After May fired two shots that missed her father, Scorpio had been reluctantly called. Despite the fact that the abusive father was the one that was armed and had taken his ex-wife hostage all the way to the rooftop, police procedure would dictate that even a dangerous and irrational repeat offending perpetrator, had to be protected by the police.

Of all the lives that had been ended due to SRU gunfire intervention, this one was by far the hardest to deal with. The justice system had clearly failed May and her mother in protecting them, which forced May to take matters into her own hands. At the Team One debrief, everybody tried to blame themselves. Only Raf had been so honest, as to think that they should have just let May shoot her father.

Ed Lane is arguably the member of the team that has the most by the book thinking, and is the least emotional one. The end scene had him being uanble to separate the work feelings from his home life, and he was seen thinking back to the events of the day. Ed has killed people before, but not one with as much youth and innocence as this one.

There is a social commentary here. Not only this episode, but also this entire series would not have been produced in any country other than Canada. If Flashpoint was made outside of Canada, the plot would have seen James get shot dead significantly earlier on, and May coming nowhere close to getting hurt. But Flashpoint and the SRU reflects the Canadian culture of being relentlessly sympathetic towards criminals. There is the belief that criminals are the way they are because they had little to no choice in their life, and that deep down they are good people that just need somebody to talk to. The later episodes of Flashpoint continue to challenge this belief, by making the criminals have little to no redeemable qualities, and by having them commit unjustifiably heinous crimes. This is a good direction for the show, as it demonstrates that sometimes lethal force is a better option than talk, to deal with some of society's worst criminals, and that going soft can actually do more damage.

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Tags: Flashpoint, Person of Interest, Headstones, Power Rangers, Hugh Dillon, Amy Jo Johnson, David Paetkau, Enrico Colantoni, Sergio Di Zio, Broken Peace

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