‘9-1-1 Lone Star’ 3×12 Review: “Negative Space”

**Spoilers Ahead**

9-1-1: Lone Star continues to baffle and confuse. This episode was no exception. Plot points from the season’s first four episodes were brought back in the most bizarre way, and characters continued making the most confusing choices possible. We did get more Nancy (Brianna Baker) however, and that’s never a bad thing. 

Last episode, we found out Owen (Rob Lowe) has a stalker. While a less interesting story could hardly be imagined, that is the choice that was made. This show continues to push the Owen-Catherine (Amy Acker) romance, and it is not serving the story at all. On the plus side, seeing Owen be called out for constantly punching people will never go out of style. This needs to happen far more frequently than it does on this show. 

This episode chose to keep doubling down on the stalker storyline. The twist? The stalker all along was the random woman Sadie (Julie Benz), whose cabin Owen randomly ended up in in the premiere. That particular storyline was by far the weakest of any introduced during the four-part premiere of this season. This was also the worst way to wrap up that story. Why would she become so obsessed with this guy, never appear anywhere in the series again, and then become Owen’s stalker? So many questions, none worth answering.

9-1-1: LONE STAR: Rafael Silva in the “Negative Space” episode of 9-1-1: LONE STAR airing Monday, March 28 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. © 2022 Fox Media LLC. CR: Kevin Estrada/FOX.

As accurate as it probably was, it was no less devastating to see the sheer lack of consequences the cop, played by Brian Letscher, faced for murdering migrants in cold blood. It seems to be a pattern so far this season that Marjan (Natacha Karam) is among the only one to have an appropriate reaction to match the seriousness of the situation. This episode was no exception. Her disgust was well-placed, and it was baffling that no one else reacted with the same rage.

Elsewhere, Nancy was left in a difficult position after responding to a medical emergency where the patient had a DNR but was resuscitated. The moral conflict the show was going for is clear. It was perplexing, however, that no one mentioned the patient’s sister, clearly in distress, didn’t mention the DNR? As much as this was a learning opportunity for Nancy, she was hardly the only one at fault in the situation. As always, though, she handled herself with grace and accepted feedback like a champ. It’s always a shame that this character doesn’t get more of the spotlight. 

9-1-1: LONE STAR: Brianna Baker in the “Negative Space” episode of 9-1-1: LONE STAR airing Monday, March 28 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. © 2022 Fox Media LLC. CR: Kevin Estrada/FOX.

I admit, I’m pre-devastated for the storyline this episode set up for Carlos (Rafael L. Silva) and T.K. (Ronen Rubinstein). As much as this show has always been commendable for not shying away from portraying addiction in an honest light, it remains frustrating to see how these two can never catch as a break as a couple. Many have written about the 9-1-1 franchise’s issues with portraying LGBTQ+ characters and relationships. It’s not that these characters can’t experience hardship. It’s at least questionable though when every time we see a LGBTQ+ relationship on-screen, they’re in the middle of a massive tragedy or life-threatening event. Hopefully, this storyline will continue to be an authentic exploration of addiction and will serve the purpose of bringing Tarlos closer together. 

Ultimately, this episode of 9-1-1: Lone Star was disappointing on so many levels. Giving viewers a taste of seeing characters like Nancy in action are only more infuriating as the show continues its focus almost solely on Owen. Hopefully, as the series continues its later half, we can get more stories from the rest of the 126. They deserve nothing less. 

9-1-1: Lone Star airs Mondays 9/8c on Fox.

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