Season 1 Episode 1
Rainn Willson stars as EVERETT BACKSTROM, an unhealthy, offensive, irascible – albeit brilliant – detective who sees the worst in everyone, and he’s usually right. After a five-year banishment to the traffic division for offensive behavior, he has returned from disgrace to lead Portland’s newly minted Special Crimes Unit (S.C.U.). Tasked with navigating the city’s most sensitive and serious cases, he must solve each crime as he tries, and fails, to change his own self-destructive behavior. In the series premiere, the S.C.U. investigates the death of a college student. Initially deemed a suicide, the team discovers the boy’s death was in fact a drug-fueled homicide. With Backstrom’s unorthodox investigative techniques, the team must utilize all of their individual skills and work together to catch the killer. Meanwhile, Backstrom’s doctor DEB CHAMAN (guest star Rizwan Manji) threatens to fail him on his physical if he doesn’t start making healthy choices, and prescribes him to make one new friend...[button color="orange" size="medium" link="http://www.fox.com/backstrom" target="blank" ]Official Site[/button]
The Ultimate Recap!
Backstrom is getting his health exam from Dr Deb and it’s not going well. He asks his Indian doctor if Hindus are so smart why do 98% of them live at the dump. He’s been working traffic but has to get cleared to get back on active duty. Officer Moto comes in and says he’s needed at a crime scene. Dr Deb gives him a prescription to make a friend or go back to traffic duty. Tobias is the dead guy and his dad is a Senator – the kid was just 19. Backstrom asks where the corpse is – he’s hanging. Detective Almond is already there. Backstrom looks up and says he’s a pretty boy’s son who hung himself and asks why. Niedermeyer asks them to ascend.
Gravely asks how the appointment went and Moto says he has to make a friend. Niedermeyer says he’s been dead less than three hours. He says things are not as they appear. Gravely says it’s too early for a theory but says gay sex tape, mental illness, bullying. Backstrom says probably homicide and Gravely asks why. Niedermeyer agrees.
Niedermeyer says he died from a heroin OD. Then he says it was jammed in his face so hard it made his gums bleed. Backstrom laughs and says they need to interview the suspicious character and points to a black guy and says he stands out like a raisin in a bowl of buttered popcorn. He says a bad guy killed this man and they will get revenge which is called justice.
He says they need to talk to the Senator about what he did to get his son killed. The senator says he and Toby weren’t speaking but he doesn’t know why. Backstrom says he does know why. The Senator says he disappointed his son and Backstrom says he cheated. The Senator says his son was suddenly an expert on true love and Backstrom asks who he fell in love with. He tells Gravely it was probably someone Mexican or old.
Gravely threatens to shoot him and he tells her to put him out of his misery. He tells her to search the dorm room. They go to talk to the head of campus security and Backstrom says it was not suicide. Gravely asks them about heroin and asks if the college is impeding a homicide investigation. That gets them into the dorm room. Backstrom is appalled they have wooden hangers. He rants at her about her inexperience and she rants at him about being old.
He says Toby did something to get him killed. He says if they can figure out what he did, they’ll know who killed him. She says his laptop is missing. He finds a hidden bag and an envelope with the name Cass on it and a pound of heroin. They go over the evidence and Toby withdrew about $53k in the last few days and there’s been a lot of heroin on campus over the last year. Charles Turner, the black guy Backstrom pointed out, seemed pretty innocent.
Niedermeyer pointed out the body language Turner was displaying that indicates guilt over something. Backstrom chats with roommate Valentine to see if he’s turned up anything to help with the case. He says if he has to stay on traffic, he’ll shoot himself. Valentine says the Cambodian cooking staff used to bring in heroin then Visser started bringing it in. That’s all he knows. He says Visser is a psycho and that’s all he knows.
Backstrom’s phone goes off and he wakes from a drunken stupor. It’s Gravely. She tells him about Visser. She tells him that Toby was well liked and it may not be dad that got him killed. She asks why he sounds rough and he says he was up all night working on the case. Niedermeyer meets him in the diner and says Toby had sex an hour before he died and the OD killed him. He asks about the item named after him on the menu and he says it’s named after his dad Sheriff Backstrom.
He makes a joke about his dad being a saint and Backstrom says a saint doesn’t pistol whip a 10 year old and shows him a scar on his head. He quotes something pithy. Moto comes him and says they got Toby’s GF’s name – Alyons. They go see her. They also find his computer on her. They ask why she stole it. There are sex videos on there and they ask her why he had them. Backstrom starts channeling her. He asks when she stole the laptop.
She says the room was clean as ever. When Moto and Backstrom come in, Gravely and Niedermeyer are looking at birds – there is bushtit feces on the heroin so the drop must be near a nest. They head to a bar to talk to Visser. They ask where he was yesterday. He refuses to answer. He fixes Backstrom a beer with an egg in it but he has no money to pay for it. He fixes a second. Backstrom drinks that one too and still doesn’t pay. Visser gives them his lawyer’s card and they walk out with no answers.
Gravely says Visser filed a police brutality complaint against her. She asks him to defend her but he won’t. Backstrom tells her to punch him in the chest and leave a bruise and he’ll support her. Nadia comes in and reads them an email that Toby was sent threatening to hurt him from Archibald Danforth. He works at a coffee shop. Gravely punches him on the way out as he asked. He and Almond go talk to him. They ask if Toby provided him with heroin.
The guy refuses Backstrom cream and sugar in his coffee. They haul him out back and he says Toby diminished him on the rugby field. He says he filed a complaint and that he suffered post traumatic sex. He says they held him down and put black shoe polish on his testicles. Almond asks if anyone else hurt Toby. He says a stripper named Cassandra slapped him. He says they were at a private party and she threatened to have her brothers break his legs.
Almond tells him to get back in school and prove he’s not diminished as a man and he tells him he really has black balls. Moto tells them he personally knows three strippers named Cassandra. They head to the strip club with the emblem that was on Toby’s computer. Backstrom asks Gravely why she’s a stripper. She says trauma but he says because she likes controlling men. They go talk to Cass and tell her Toby is dead. They tell her about the $1k and ask if it was for an abortion.
She says junior college and they ask about the heroin. She says she doesn’t use and he doesn’t sell heroin. Backstrom says he had a pound of smack. She says someone must have put it there. She says he was beautiful inside and out and Backstrom says he didn’t look so good last time he saw him. She asks if the family would let her come to the family if she had the right clothes. Gravely slams on the brakes and smacks his head on the dash after they leave. She chews him out.
Nadia calls them after they leave and tells them that Cass is sister to Charles Turner the campus security guy that Backstrom pointed out as guilty from the get-go. He feels vindicated instantly. Nadia comes to see Backstrom at his place and says the chess set they’re playing on is worth $20k. He says they can’t have sex and she asks if his penis is broken because of his health problems. He says no. He shows her his prescription to make a friend. He says you can’t have sex with friends.
His phone says text and he looks at it. He says Gravely and Almond arrested Charles. He says he’s drunk and she offers a folk remedy. She slaps him so hard he falls out of the chair. He interviews Charles and they ask him about Visser. He says he didn’t kill Toby. He says Toby loved Cass and that Toby was paying off her debts so she could quit. Visser was bleeding Toby dry and then Toby stole the stash that Visser left for Charles.
We see Toby brought a bag of dope to Visser to prove that he had it. Toby pulled a gun on Visser. Visser laughed and jammed the dope in Toby’s face. Charles says he took off and Visser hung him. They go to bring in Visser who doesn’t go down easy. He swaps fire with the cops and shoots Backstrom in the arm. He goes for the gun and Backstrom shoot him and then he falls in the water. Moto asks why he threw the gun in the water and says it’s okay – the shooting was in bounds. He tells Backstrom he’s in shock and will be just fine.
Gravely says she’s Backstrom who is cynical, lazy and yet is a hero. Backstrom says he had to know where the gun went. Niedermeyer pops up with the gun out of the water. All the shells are there – fully loaded. It was sabotaged. Backstrom wonders who sabotaged the gun. He waits for Cass at the jail who says the DA is going for the death penalty on her brother even though he cooperated. He tells her they need to talk. He asks her how many times she and Visser ran this play.
He tells her that she and Visser ran this play all the time. Almond and Gravely watch on a camera. Backstrom tells her they found her fingerprints on the bullets. She says she was afraid for his life and didn’t know the gun was broken. Backstrom asks how she knows now that it was. He laughs at her and she calls him a racist pig that hates women. She asks who people will believe. Backstrom asks why she hates the boy so much – because Toby made her believe for a moment.
He says she saw for a moment she could have an extraordinary life but made the wrong choice. Gravely comes out and arrests her for arranging Toby’s murder. Dr. Deb tells Backstrom that he can tell he hasn’t stopped drinking. He says the booze had an egg in it and Deb says he did make a friend – Nadia sent in a statement saying they made friends. Valentine comes in and asks what’s taking so long. He tells Deb that if he fails Backstrom, he’ll have no reason to live and will be dead in a year.
Deb asks if they’re related and says he sees a resemblance. Deb says he has to see him every week. Backstrom says he’s a Hindu and believes in reincarnation so why is he a doctor – because he knows reincarnation is a load of crap and we have only one life and it’s all a load of crap. Backstrom walks out and lights a cigar and walks to work in the rain.
Synopsis is courtesy of Stormy Elizabeth/CelebDirtyLaundry.com