Deadline
Perception

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Heathen: D | Grade It Now!
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Police Brutality

Wallace plops down on a couch in Nikki's office and says Roth's lawyers might try to argue that racism is a mental illness, thus Roth wasn't of sound mind when he shot Braxton. Benton can't believe people are claiming racism is just a version of insanity. "What happened to good old fashioned hate and stupidity?" he asks. Hildy appears and chips in that the Black Panther party came up with the idea of racism being a form of paranoid psychosis, making racist America an insane nation. "I hate shrinks. Does that mean I need therapy?" Wallace asks. "Yes," spits Brooke.

Brooke and Wallace are back in the office, heading for the elevator and trying to ignore each other. They play a childish game with the elevator button, and the camera decides to shoot the scene from ankle-level looking up at Hope Davis's bum. It's right there in the camera. It's cheeky. They banter about the case. More Davis bum. They push each other into the elevator and grin sheepishly, half-annoyed and half-aroused. She picks lint off his suit. They smile. They glare. They smile. This is courtship we're witnessing. "Buy you too much to drink?" Wallace asks. More stupid grins. I'm getting sick. Brooke accepts the truce, and Wallace's third chin jiggles a bit in anticipation of wild nooky. His first chin is just anxious to feel the cool dribble of alcohol running into its dimple and pooling there.

The camera pans across a bedroom, where -- oh, God -- Brooke and Wallace's clothes are strewn about the floor and a whiskey bottle lies empty on the comforter. The show already asks us to believe the impossible -- that Brooke and Wallace chose to get married. Being forced to watch them in bed together seems totally superfluous, not to mention nauseating. They're spooning and sleeping when the phone rings. Wallace stirs and dislodges Brooke from one of the crevices in his face. "You'll be sorry," Brooke says sleepily. "I'm already sorry," Wallace grins, then he quickly retreats and makes sure she knows he's kidding. The phone call is summoning Wallace to a precinct. Oliver Platt's pajama shirt cracks open and exposes lily-white flesh, pillowy pale chunks of...oh, no, it's happened. I've gone blind. My eyes sting. This scene is arsenic. Wallace takes a drink of liquor and leaves.

Wallace switches to coffee. He shows up at the police station to meet another reporter, and gets a tip that the cops broke up a fight in which Manny was involved. He resisted arrest, until Officer Brady, Braxton's partner, got him facedown on the pavement to cuff him. Benton zeroes in on Brady, whose account of the situation is that one of the "participants in a local disturbance" took a swing at him. "Kind of hard to fight when you're flat on your tummy," Wallace muses. Brady glares and says he has a witness, and points to He/She Hooker. I'm so confused. I think he might have paid her off.

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