Chicago P.D. 9×07 “Trust Me” continues to harp on the fractured team dynamics in Intelligence, with an episode that makes us think about who we trust, and why we trust them. There are choices made in this hour, some are good, some are bad, and some are just about …moving the pieces forward. The problem is, at this point, there doesn’t seem to be any way for these people, this “family,” to come out of this unscathed.
To come out of this …well, a family.
If we consider the team a family – which, at times, the show has been anything but good at portraying, then it’s clear that the dynamics are greatly altered right now. Jay doesn’t trust Voight. If we’re being honest, it’s hard to say Jay has ever truly trusted Voight, and whatever he once felt that he seemingly got over, well, it’s back with a vengeance. And Hailey …well, if there’s a choice to be made, as this episode showed, she’s gonna make it. No one’s gonna force her. And that choice is going to be Jay. Period.
But the Voight issue is bigger than just …what he did regarding Roy. Because that’s not an isolated incident. We cannot think of Hank Voight as a cop who made one wrong choice. Even affording him the benefit of the doubt in basically every questionable decision he’s made still leaves us in a very weird spot. Because …how can we continue to condone the way he “polices”? How can the show?
Cop shows used to play with characters like Voight a lot. There was a certain idea that tough cops who did “the wrong thing for the right reasons” were somehow necessary. But we’ve hopefully all learned better. At the very least, we should have all learned to question the beliefs we’ve previously held about the way cops work, and what we, as a society, are willing to stay quiet on. Because the problem with a cop like Voight, a man like Voight, is that …in the end, what’s right? Who gets to decide that?
That’s right, he does. And though the show often goes out of its way to make his cause righteous, the truth is people like Voight, in real life, the type who make their own rules …often cause more harm in the pursuit of their own kind of justice than they solve.
What’s the answer for this storyline going forward? Ideally, consequences. I’m not even saying Voight needs to be off the show – though hey, I wouldn’t really complain. But if Chicago P.D. feels like they need an antagonist, so be it. Can we at least make sure this leads somewhere? The credibility of the show, of the messages it’s trying to send in every other respect, is compromised by the fact that Voight continues to exist without any kind of reckoning.
It’s way past time.
Just as it was way past time for the Upstead conversation we got this episode, a conversation that proves a lot of things, and confirms the most important one: at their darkest moment, when neither of them really knows what to do or how to move forward, Hailey and Jay are still together. They’re still trying. And yes, sometimes it’s hard. Sometimes it feels impossible. But relationships aren’t all about love. They’re about effort.
You make a decision to try, and then you keep on making that decision, every day. Hailey and Jay haven’t gotten married yet, but they’re clearly committed to each other, for better or worse. We’re in the worse now, but that doesn’t mean we won’t get to the better. In fact, that we are in the worse and they’re still communicating, even if no one has any answers, is a good sign.
If it feels like it’s not it’s because TV often fails at showing us real relationships, going through real obstacles. How you get through those obstacles isn’t always easy, or quick. It’s about choosing the other person and putting in the work. Hailey had already chosen Jay before when she stood in front of him and asked him to marry her. Jay had already chosen Hailey, when he said yes. But in this episode, the choice was made again. And, perhaps, it was made in a much more profound way, because it was made not in a moment of happiness, not while they were overwhelmed by love …but in the hardest moment they’ve faced as a couple.
That’s the most important thing. The rest? Well, the rest they can figure out, because that’s what adults who truly love each other do.
Things I think I think:
- I know the opening scene was meant to make me feel bad for Hank Voight, but I’m so past feeling bad for Hank Voight that all it did was annoy me. There was a moment there, in the early seasons, where the show could have convincingly passed him off as a morally grey character, but the lack of consequences – and frankly, our awareness of what it means for men like him to exist in the position they do – has evolved too much.
- Trudy sees all. I kinda love her for it. We haven’t gotten enough from her in what feels like forever.
- Don’t tell me Jay doesn’t trust Hailey, when, in a life-or-death situation, he trusts her to have his back.
- “Me and my partner in pursuit”
- Jay and Hailey here having ENTIRE silent conversations.
- Is “the streets respect you” supposed to be a compliment here?
- “No one controls me. Not him, and not you.”
- Except Jay would never try.
- The whole “bad thing” for “good reasons” sounds VERY good on a show like this, but it’s never this black and white in real life.
- BRO? BRO?
- When Jay called Voight’s bluff? PERFECTION.
- He doesn’t know what he wants.
- I’m still not convinced it’s about “doing the right thing,” as much as it’s about control.
- Also, the IRONY of Voight telling someone else not to do the same things he’s done countless times before. When someone else does it, it’s a problem, apparently.
- “Family. It’s everything, right?”
Agree? Disagree? What did you think of Chicago P.D. 9×07 “Trust Me”? Share with us in the comments below!
Chicago P.D. airs Wednesdays on NBC.