This week’s “Blue Bloods” demonstrates how little things mean a lot in life, and sometimes, doing the right thing just comes at too high a cost. April 29’s 21st episode of Season 6, “The Extra Mile” makes a big issue of a police union party, and what it can become in this age of social media, while a grandson and a husband make choices for their families that have very profound consequences, and very different outcomes. Similar intents don’t always steer a path in the same direction.
Police Commissioner, Frank Reagan (Tom Selleck) is persistently nixing the notion that he should “be one of the boys and girls in blue by attending the police union party. In fact, he’s not too keen on the whole idea of the party, because of what can be posted and spread across social media in unguarded moments. On another front, Erin (Bridget Moynahan) and Anthony (Steve Schirripa) are doing all they can to convince a young and fearful witness and victim to provide a “one finger” testimony in court, pointing out the man who killed his cousin, and committed other rampant murders. The young witness, Willis (Brandon Gill) has more than justice on his mind, thinking of the grandmother who raised him, and the neighborhood where they have spent and built their lives. No matter how Erin and Anthony promised protection, he knows how vicious Dontrell Tariq (Phillip Reid) can be, and he’s not trusting, or sacrificing to that level yet. Danny and Maria (Donnie Wahlberg and Marisa Ramirez) have a convenience store holdup as their case, and a happenstance customer, Mr. Kaplan (Patch Darragh) is a wounded witness, but Danny comes to have doubts that the whole truth is coming out. A trip to the bathroom turns into another run and dodge for Willis, and Erin tries her legal “Hail Mary,” and this time it works, getting a material witness order from the judge because of the fear her witness has for Tariq.
Danny starts to have concerns about the blurry testimony of Mr. Kaplan, never to clear about the suspect. Frank is under siege with questions never before asked, like “What are you up to?” and “Having a good day?” He assures Garrett (Gregory Jbara) and Gormley (Robert Clohessy) that they wouldn’t have jobs if they had spent any time asking those inane questions. He also is not biting on any of the bait that they are throwing out, like Mrs. Gormley having a must engagement, making it impossible for her husband to be the surrogate for the police department at their function. When Anthony pays a visit to Willis’ grandmother, she’s not giving up anything, telling him to “turn left at Jupiter, and right at Mars” to find her grandson. He pretends to lose service on his cell phone, asking to borrow hers, and he gathers her contacts. Morgan Rutherford (Hassen Johnson) too conveniently falls into the generic profile provided by Kaplan of the suspect, and he has a past to get prickly over. He runs as a “statement of political correctness” when Danny and Maria drop by to talk, but even Danny senses the prejudicial angle of this interrogation, and that Rutherford isn’t their man. Anthony locates Willis, but it becomes another day of out the window, jump and roll, except this time, cops are waiting to take him in, as Erin says “I’m sorry,” for her tactics. Frank orders Sid Gormley to “get over yourself,” and attend the union function. Willis sees no benefit in the witness protection program, putting his 62-year-old grandmother out of her home, and away from all she has ever known. He continues to answer “No” to becoming a witness. Both sides beg the other for cooperation and understanding.
Danny begins to think that Kaplan shot himself on the evening of the robbery, since no visitors, not even his wife, are visiting the science teacher, and the detective probes his own wife (Amy Carlson) to verify the line of questioning. When Kaplan refuses to let Danny search his bag, which Danny believes holds a gun, Detective Reagan becomes even more dogged. Anthony intercedes for Willis constantly, pleading with Erin that “he’s one of the good guys,” as if he doesn’t notice. The final straw comes when she allows Tariq to be in the cell next to Willis. Anthony offers his resignation. The next morning, she shows him surveillance of the cells, and Dontrell’s confession to the killings, without any leading from Willis. After a court visit with the new evidence, Tariq is sentenced to 25 years, and Willis and his grandmother can live out their lives peacefully, because nothing public reflecting on the boy was seen. Erin hopes that Anthony will reconsider now, and understand that her plans always have purpose. Frank essentially decides to cancel the police union ball, but Lt. Gormley begs him to reconsider. He agrees, with the condition that Garrett and he accept his ruling.
With Danny digging deeper, Mr. Kaplan is checking out of the hospital early. Danny has to insist that he cannot leave now, since there has been a threat of explosives in the building. Maria finds a string of Atlantic City charges, in addition to the debt burden of the Kaplan Famiy. A simple stakeout reveals that Mr. Kaplan would do anything to give his lovely wife what she wants, including Atlantic City gambling runs. Everything nails her as the convenience store shooter. Danny tracks down Kaplan once again at a diner, to show him that “we got the killer.” He turned to see his wife in cuffs and custody, and their expressions say everything. This is the end of the line. Making peace, Erin promises Anthony that you’ll never be “in the dark again,” regarding her plans. At the “Blue Bloods” fixture of the family dinner, Frank confesses that “I loved those parties,” in the old days, speaking how media matters much more complicated in these times. The officers of the family depart from the dinner table to the festivities, so Gormley’s plea did its work.
This “Blue Bloods” closes with Garrett and Frank, playing buddies at the bar, and keeping tabs by phone on all the party fun. Garrett commends the boss on his way of not always taking charge, and letting Sid Gormley be the hero, and parties probably set to stay.
Next week, the season finale airs, with a personal slant on shooting shaking up the family.