Only one more episode to go, and I’m happy to report that The Shield’s sixth season is back to its old breakneck speed and edge-of-your seat action.
Mackie confronts Claudette about his upcoming review panel and she admits a decision has already been made: he has a week left. He tells her he will solve the San Marcos murders to give her the count she needs to save the precinct, and then she won’t want to get rid of him. Vic calls on his politician connection — who owes him big after Vic’s cover-up of his daughter’s illicit behaviors — but the politician comes back to say he can’t help him. He tells Vic “you’ve built a mountain of bad will too high to climb.”
Aceveda shows up at the barn with Cruz, his questionable businessman money-man, who offers them a lead for the San Marcos murders, a Salvadorian guy named Rincon who just got out of prison. Seems Rincon was bragging to his Mexican co-worker about hacking up the Mexicans while they were still alive. The Strike Team shows up at the vato’s BBQ party to confront Rincon. They offer him a deal, but in the eleventh hour Hiatt stops Vic’s unorthodox methods and short circuits any progress. Vic manages to convince Claudette to let him handle it instead of Hiatt. (This should prove to be an important part of any upcoming power play between Vic and Hiatt and, perhaps, Vic and Claudette.) The one-armed Mexican diplomat shows up with his lawyer and says that he will ID Rincon if he gets his money-filled briefcase back.
Vic makes an unorthodox deal with Rincon: give up the other murderers and they will make sure he doesn’t get offed. Seems the San Marcos murders were arranged by Guardo (guess he kind of got his just desserts). The team has 24 hours to offer up the other murderers or Rincon gets it, Claudette doesn’t get her count, and Mackie can kiss his career goodbye. Vic gives two of the Salvadorian murderers to the Byz Lats to do with what they will, and the police find their bodies an hour later after the angry mob tears them apart. Now they can try Rincon for the murders — he lives as Mackie promised (sort of) — and they can call the murders solved.
Steve and Dutch are finally investigating something more than hot handbags. They call in the dead guy’s gay lover and though it seems they’re playing good cop/bad cop, I get the feeling Steve is a homophobe. Not only that, he’s playing with Dutch, Tina, and Danny using cutie boy Hiatt as bait. There is a great line when Steve congratulates Hiatt on the interest of Tina and Danny; Hiatt says, “I don’t make a habit of banging chicks who know where to find me in the morning.”