9-1-1 Lone Star Recap: “Down to Clown” (S3E15)

Spoilers ahead!

We begin with a YouTuber running a survivalist channel. Upon spotting a lizard, he attempts to stab it and eat it for dinner, only to stab himself. Captain Tommy Vega and her ambulance team have to struggle over rough terrain to save him. When they get there, they find that the lizard has taken refuge inside the YouTuber’s wounded leg and they need to pull it out.

In therapy, Captain Owen Strand tries an association exercise and mentions a clown nose, leading his therapist to suggest that there’s a fear of clowns going on. Owen rejects the idea as ridiculous.

At 9-1-1 dispatch, Dave (the talented but awkward guy Grace clashed with in the past) answers a call from a guy in a condo on fire. He’s a guest there and isn’t sure how to get out. Dave pulls up the schematics and tries to direct him out of the building but can’t. He ends up advising the guy to go into a gym, expecting that there will be large windows. There aren’t, so the man ends up trapped. Dave does his best to get the guy to block the door with wet towels and survive long enough for the firefighters to get there, but it doesn’t work out. The man thanks Dave for all his help before ending the call. At the end of the day, Grace attempts to comfort Dave and ends up inviting him over for dinner.

TK returns home, having brought with him the lizard from his call earlier. Carlos is visibly annoyed.

Over dinner, Judd, Grace, and Dave talk about overcoming grief and feeling responsible for the deaths of others. They end up opening a bottle of bourbon.

At the therapist’s office, Owen attempts to argue that he has no fear of clowns.

Grace awakens to find that Dave is still at their house, having had too much to drink the night before, and stayed on their couch at Judd’s invitation. Dave is making them breakfast and hanging out with baby Charlie, having successfully stopped her crying. His positivity and competence when dealing with Charlie is clearly getting to her and she finds that Judd has invited Dave to stay the week as his house is undergoing repairs. Over the week, Dave’s chipper attitude and bond with Charlie manages to get under Grace’s skin.

At a child’s birthday party, a clown entertains the kids from atop a homemade playground structure. He makes balloon animals for the kids and surprises everyone by knowing that the birthday boy’s favourite animal is a giraffe. The boy’s mother is impressed and pleased, given that her son was upset that his father, whom she’s divorcing, isn’t there. As the clown dances around, he crashes through the floor of the playground structure.

The 126 shows up and begins lifesaving procedures. However, Owen looks like a deer in headlights at the sight of a clown. As the birthday boy’s mother attempts to comfort him, telling him that the firefighters are brave, he remarks that Owen doesn’t look brave at all. When Tommy asks for the clown’s name, it eventually comes out that the clown is the boy’s father. He’s adopted this disguise (and evidently learned to do balloon animals) to be with his son on his birthday. This revelation provokes an argument between the divorcing couple, but they end up cooling off and decide that the boy can ride with his clown dad to the hospital.

At home, TK finds that his lizard has escaped. Spotting it on the couch next to Carlos, he attempts to snatch it without Carlos realizing, but misses. Then he spots the lizard on Carlos, which causes Carlos to freak out.

At Tommy’s house, Grace complains about how overbearing Dave is but says that she needs to be kind to him. When Judd arrives to pick her up, he assures her that “Uncle Dave” is watching Charlie, further annoying Grace. At home, Grace and Judd find that Charlie has taken her first steps. Dave assures them that he’s taken a video, but they find that he’s accidentally filmed himself. In bed, Judd agrees that Dave needs to go.

In therapy, Owen realizes his clown fears are related to his estranged father, who left when he was young.

At the 9-1-1 dispatch, Grace attempts to confront Dave about leaving, but he interrupts her by saying, in his kind of nice but kind of annoying way, that he realizes she’s trying to do a nice thing, but he doesn’t like all this family togetherness. It turns out he took Grace and Judd’s invitation because he thought he was being nice by letting them be nice, and he only stuck around their house because he thought they wanted to do him a favour. So he goes back to his own life, and Grace is both annoyed and relieved.

Carlos turns the apartment upside down and eventually finds the lizard. TK initially thinks that Carlos has killed the lizard, but Carlos assures him that this is not the case. However, TK realizes that he should let the lizard go in the wild.

At home, Owen calls his father. A woman answers; Owen’s father isn’t there. The woman asks if there’s a message. Owen is unable to answer.

Final Thoughts

Did anyone else think it was a little odd that the clown did his show from atop a children’s play structure?

No real resolution about the Tommy situation and it’s killing us.

Marjan, Paul, Mateo, and Nancy need more screen time. Like, way more.