9-1-1 Lone Star Recap: “Impulse Control” (S3E14)

Spoilers ahead!

We begin at a drive-through fast food joint where a man named Al is buying his family dinner. After the restaurant shorts Al’s wife on her order of chicken nuggets and the kid taking the order calls Al’s wife fat, Al sees red and attempts to jump through the drive-through window.

Unfortunately, Al gets stuck. While everyone videos Al and jeers at him, the crew of firehouse 126 attempt to grease Al up to push him out. When that fails, they use a bucket of lard from the restaurant. As they free him, Captain Owen Strand tells Al that he should think about anger management. The ambulance crew wheels Al away and the same kid who provoked Al before tosses him a box, telling him “Here’s your nuggets, lard ass” before smirking away with no consequences.

At Captain Tommy Vega’s house, it’s the twins’ birthday and Tommy has made a whole in-home spa for the girls and their friends. Then, out of nowhere, Tommy’s brother-in-law, Julius, whom we’ve never met, arrives on the scene. Tommy makes it clear that he’s unwelcome, so he unhappily leaves. Later on, at the firehouse, Judd tries to open Tommy up to the possibility of including Julius in her girls’ lives. Tommy confides to Judd that Julius was always a wild child and her late husband, Charles, always had to carry water for him.

Also at the firehouse, Marjan tries to convince Owen to go back to therapy, arguing that his mental health is important to the whole firehouse. Owen angrily argues that he “finished” therapy and there’s no need for him to return.

At a high school wrestling match, Al, the man who humiliated himself at a restaurant drive-through, watches his son wrestle. When the other wrestler pulls a cheap move and knocks the wind out of his son, Al charges the boy and improbably ends up wedged in a set of bleachers. The 126 arrives to help, this time cutting him out. Owen once again implores Al to try therapy, while Al tells Owen that #lardass is still trending.

Tommy invites Julius over for a drink and to hash out their differences. Julius tells Tommy that he actually did go to the funeral. He drove up to the church and was unable to enter the building after watching Tommy and the girls arrive. The two bond over their love of Charles—and then they kiss. They’re both embarrassed and overcome, so Julius leaves.

Owen meets Catherine for lunch. He apologizes and they both agree that they miss each other. Owen thinks they’re dating again, but Catherine pours cold water on the idea. As much as she’d like to date Owen again, his temper and bad habit of punching people is a problem. She tells him that he can’t call her until he goes back to therapy—and she hopes he will call.

Meanwhile, Al is driving to his first anger management appointment with his family, who are very proud of the step he’s taking. A silver truck starts harassing them, honking and weaving in and out of traffic. The driver is drinking from what looks like a forty. Then, he flashes a handgun at Al and his family before causing a massive multi-car accident.

The 126 appears on the scene. They prioritize the drunk driver, as the truck is in flames. Al, who assures them that he is not to blame this time, begs for help for his injured family but is rebuffed because the drunk driver is in more danger. The team puts out the fire, pulls the man out, and begins to save his life.

Al ruminates with Mateo, wondering why such a bad man should live. As police search the scene for the driver’s handgun, Al pulls it from his pocket and shoots the drunk driver over and over. Owen tackles Al, asking him why. Al responds, “He hurt my family.”

Back at the firehouse Owen tells everyone that they did their best and that no one should think there was anything more they could have done. Mateo comforts Nancy, who was next to the drunk driver as he was shot and killed. Then he asks her out for coffee.

Tommy returns home, where Julius is babysitting and telling the girls a story about their father. She’s pleased that he’s there to tell them about parts of their father’s life that they don’t know about.

Owen ends the episode in the therapist’s chair. When the therapist asks him why he’s returned, Owen responds, “Rage. I have rage.”

Final Thoughts

Look, we’ve always said that Owen needs to solve fewer problems with punching. We’re so happy with Catherine’s stance.

Hopefully there won’t be any more fat-guy-stuck-in-something calls in the future. This isn’t Winnie the Pooh.

Tommy . . . please no?