“Backstrom” Season 1 Episode 1 “Dragon Slayer” aired on Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015, at 9:00 p.m. on FOX. It’s the first episode of the series, and Backstrom demonstrates his expertise as a detective as he meets his new team. Find out what happened in the recap below.
The episode opens with Backstrom (Rainn Wilson) at his doctor’s office. He’s getting a physical exam to determine if he’s ready to get back to field work again, five years after working at the traffic division. He’s being reassigned as a detective, specifically in the Special Cases Unit (SCU) of the Portland police department.
Backstrom’s doctor tells him that he will have to give up smoking and drinking, and most of all, he will have to learn to make friends with his new team. This establishes that the show’s lead character isn’t easily likeable, and he will have to work hard at being one.
On his first case, Backstrom is briefed by Moto (Page Kennedy). There’s a suicide victim, Toby Percival III, and he’s not just any victim — he’s the son of a senator. Backstrom checks the crime scene, which is inside a university campus. The body is hanging by the bridge.
He then meets Detective Sgt. Almond (Dennis Hasbert), his immediate boss, Niedermayer (Kristoffer Poloha) from forensics and Gravely (Genevieve Angelson), his new partner. They gather and examine the crime scene some more, and Backstrom immediately notices that Toby did not commit suicide; he was murdered. Niedermayer agrees with Backstrom’s call, as forensics show there was heroin jammed into his mouth. It was pushed so hard, it left his cornea scratched and his gums bloodied.
So then, it’s a confirmed homicide. Backstrom searches the crowd of on-lookers and singles out a black man, one of the campus police officers, as a likely suspect. How racist can this guy get?
Together with his partner Gravely, Backstrom checks out the victim’s dorm room. While doing this, the two talk about how they ended up at SCU. Turns out, Gravely’s professional record has some similarities with Backstrom in that they were both disgraced and demoted and then asked back to work at SCU.
They find a backpack stashed in the chimney in Toby’s dorm room. It has $1,000 in an envelope labeled “Cass” and several heroin in plastic bags. Backstrom assumes that Cass is probably a girlfriend.
Meanwhile, the SCU squad learns that heroin supply in the university has ran short after the arrest of the kitchen staff. But there’s a new supplier in town, who is also a strip club owner nearby. Backstrom and Gravely head to the club to investigate this guy, Visser (Nic Bishop).
Visser doesn’t provide much leads though, as he’s kind of a scum. Gravely, however, establishes who is in control here and dislocates Visser’s finger after making a rude comment. He lodges a complaint to the police about her later.
The tech expert at the SCU, Nadia (Beatrice Rosen), has new leads for the team. There’s a boy in Toby’s sports team who sent the victim threatening emails. Could he be the murderer? The suspect in question reveals that he had nothing to do with Toby’s death, but confirms that Toby was indeed dating a woman named Cass. Coincidentally, she’s working as a dancer in Visser’s strip club. Aha!
Backstrom and Gravely talk to Cass (Tiffany Hines) who’s inconsolable about Toby’s death. She says that Toby has been helping her pay off her debt to Visser. The detectives also learn that Cass’ brother, Charles, is the black guy Backstrom suspected early on in the episode. Wouldn’t you know it? Backstrom was right to point him out the first time!
They have Charles (Jarod Joseph) in custody, and he explains that he knew Toby was going to meet up with Visser that night, but he didn’t think a murder would go down. Backstrom concludes that Visser killed the victim because Toby had a gun with him when they met.
The police arrests Visser upon Charles’ testimony, but he tries to run. Backstrom runs after him at the back of his strip club, and Visser shoots him on the arm. It’s not fatal. They tussle, as Visser loses hold of his gun, and Backstrom gets his bearing. He quickly shoots Visser, and his body falls in the water. Backstrom also tosses Visser’s gun after him, worried that he will be suspended for shooting an unarmed man. He didn’t want to get another record.
Next, Neidermayer apparently retrieves Toby’s gun from the crime scene and discovers that this has been jammed, which means that he couldn’t fire this properly during his confrontation with Visser. Who would jam Toby’s gun? Where can he possible get one anyway? Backstrom realizes Cass had something to do with this. Of course, he’s in on this with Visser! As it turns out, they were in cahoots with duping Toby all along. Cass didn’t expect Toby would totally fall for her for real. The police arrests her as Visser’s accomplice.
The episode closes with Backstrom at the doctor’s office again. He’s been cleared to return to work full time with his new team.
— BACKSTROM (@BackstromFOX) January 24, 2015
And that’s the recap of “Backstrom” Season 1 Episode 1 “Dragon Slayer,” which aired on Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015, at 9:00 p.m on FOX. Check out a highlight from the show in the video below.
What do you think about this show’s debut? Are you going to stick with it for the rest of the season?
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Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons/David Shankbone