'Graceland' Recap: The Agents Finally do Their Jobs
'Graceland' Recap: The Agents Finally do Their Jobs
M.K. Costigan
M.K. Costigan
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
This week on Graceland, Johnny continues to prove why he shouldn't be trusted with undercover missions, Jakes is a voice of reason, and the sex trafficking ring is finally taken down. Let's go!

Father of the Year

"The Head of the Pig" opens in the Mexican desert, which is almost as desolate as the moral compass of this show. Johnny and Jakes are giving Solano a demonstration of how their plane smuggling plan will work. Unfortunately, dropping heavy items from the sky tends to cause a lot of damage. Solano is not impressed and decides to go with Carlito's ship smuggling plan instead. He seems to like Johnny, because he doesn't maim or kill him for this failure, but he does inform Johnny that he will soon be kicked out of his house.

Carlito is euphoric, since he feels that he and Johnny are in a contest for approval and paternal affection. Even Johnny's fall from grace can't tame Solano's thinly-veiled contempt for his son though, and soon the relationship devolves even more. Solano is informed by Markham that Carlito has been running a sex trafficking ring behind his back (more on that in a minute). Solano seems more upset about the insubordination than he does about the human rights violation his son has committed, and proceeds to pull Carlito away from dinner and beat the crap out of him. Everyone else just sits and watches, clearly unsurprised by the display of violence.

On the plus side, Solano's hatred for Carlito is now extreme enough that he's willing to give the plane thing another shot. Jakes and Johnny rig the cargo with inflatable rafts, which effectively protect Solano's merchandise. Johnny is now ordered to stay in the US and organize the drops, even though he promised Lucia he would return for her. Jakes rightly calls Johnny out for being an idiot and not doing his job. I've said it before and I'll say it again: when Jakes is the voice of reason in your life, you know you've made some exceptionally terrible decisions.

The Sting

Back in California, Mike is running himself ragged in Sulla's den. There hasn't been any real progress inside or in finding Lena. Paige tells Briggs that she suspects Mike is covering up Lena's murder, since the facts he gave her simply don't add up. She wants Briggs to use his influence on Markham's task force to take down Sulla. Briggs is not even slightly hesitant about going behind Mike's back and setting up a sting.

Their plan is simple; they use Markham's connection with the Solano cartel to force his hand in shutting down Sulla's operation. Paige stops by the police station pretending to be a friend of Briggs' from the FBI. When Briggs mentions that she's working on a Solano case, Markham asks him to spy on her. Briggs then pretends that the FBI sources in Sulla's place have uncovered that Sulla is working with a cop, and that it's only a matter of time until they get the name. To protect himself, Markham must take down Sulla before that happens. 

The only thing left to do is to get Mike out of Sulla's before the strike. Paige is able to manipulate him into returning to Graceland, but Mike soon gets a call from Johnny saying that Solano has found out about the sex trafficking ring. Mike realizes that Markham is going in to execute everyone and cover his and Solano's tracks, so he rushes back to save Sulla. 

Mike is inside when the raid begins. The police systematically kill everyone inside that isn't a trafficking victim. Mike and Sulla almost escape, but Markham catches them and shoots Sulla dead. He has his gun trained on Mike, and it's unclear whether he would have shot him or not had Paige not arrived. He is, at the very least, sorely tempted. 

Afterwards, everyone gives their statements. Mike explains that Markham is a crooked cop and killed everyone inside unnecessarily, but no one believes him. He's lost his link to the cartel and he is unable to do anything to bring Markham to justice. Meanwhile, Paige finds the crematorium Mike used to dispose of Lena's body, and seems to know exactly what happened there. I can't tell if she's very smart or if the writers are having her make improbably deductive leaps to avoid having to work out a better storyline, but in any case the truth is coming out.

Mike feels royally screwed by his teammates, though they pretend that they didn't orchestrate the entire operation. The only good news is that Briggs has finally earned Markham's trust and expects to be brought into his group of evil officers soon. He'll fit right in.

Father of the Year, Part Two

"The Head of the Pig" also sees us getting confirmation that Charlie is, indeed, pregnant. Briggs finds out when he sees her positive pregnancy test, and quickly calls Jakes to get some advice. Again, Jakes has suddenly become someone in a position to dole out wisdom, and that is frightening. He tells Briggs that, even with all of the drama he's going through with Cassandra, having a child is worth it.

Briggs seems to agree with him, as he tells Charlie that he wants to keep the baby. She doesn't say if she wants the same, but she also doesn't seem unhappy with his answer. This small domestic bliss is shattered, though, when Briggs gets a reminder that he's a murderer. An unknown number calls him and plays the recording of him killing Juan Badillo. Will he finally face consequences for his actions? Will Charlie realize that she's been impregnated by a lying liar who lies? Tune in next week to find out!

Graceland airs Wednesdays at 10pm on USA.

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(Image courtesy of USA)