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Role Models - Recap

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The episode begins with Commissioner Walter Clarke playing chess with the previous Commissioner, Jake Dowdell. Back in the present day, Det. Walter Clarke and his sister, Agnes, are discussing their parents. Agnes wants to meet them, but Walter tries to explain that their parents were nothing more than disappointments. He adds that he doesn’t know where they are, but Agnes is persistent. She knows that he, being a detective, can find them.

At work, Walter gets a call about the dead body of a cop being found under a bridge. Tim Novak, the victim, was shot multiple times in his head and torso. Don says both he and Arroyo had worked with him in the past. Tim was moonlighting as security for, Kyle Burton, a hip hop mogul. Novak was driving Burton to a concert, when the incident took place, and it was Burton who called it in.

They talk to Burton, who says he was passed out in the back of the vehicle, which is why he saw nothing. Don tells Walter that Novak was really close to the commissioner, and was going to drive for him soon, so this case will be closely watched. Just then, Commissioner Jake Dowdell arrives at the scene. Arroyo tells Walter he wants to handle this case, because he was close to Novak. Walter makes it clear that this is his case. Arroyo tries to threaten him with the recording again, but it doesn’t work. Walter says he knows about him and Deb. He says he will keep his mouth shut, as long as Arroyo keeps quiet about the recording.

At Novak’s house, his wife mentions that he had kept a file of all his cases in his office. Just then, Vince Madrid, who was Novak’s CO, arrives and consoles his wife. Don and Walter go through the file and find out that Burton and another hip hop artist, Remy Hyde, were rivals. Walter notices Don isn’t too affected by Novak’s death, like the others are. Don says that he and Novak had philosophical differences. Madrid enters and says that he and Novak were partners in the security business. He asks them to look into Hyde. After he leaves, Don tells Walter that Madrid taught Arroyo all the dirty tricks that he learned.

Diaco has a chat with Hyde, who he says he was at home when the incident occurred. He even gives Diaco the details of all the women he was with. Arroyo later informs everyone that, according to a ballistics report, the bullets from the crime scene match the ones from an earlier shooting. Portis Walker, a man who Novak had arrested twice in the past, was involved in the earlier shooting. Walter realizes Arroyo got this info from Madrid, not from ballistics, and warns Arroyo to run it by him next time. The later arrests Portis Walker from his house.

At the station, Walker is told about the ballistics report. He says the gun is his, but it was stolen from him a month ago. Walter counters that the gun was found underneath the front seat of his car. Walker argues that he wouldn’t be foolish enough to hide the gun under the front seat, after murdering a cop. Don starts thinking about what Walter said and he looks in Walker’s car for a secret compartment where he would hide his gun. He and Walker find a secret compartment with guns hidden in it. Don concludes someone is trying to set Walker up, which is why the gun was found under the front seat. Arroyo is watching them from a distance.

Back at the station, Walter shows Don Novak’s bank statements that he has pulled up. It reveals that Novak was moving around huge amounts of money, but Don suggests they stick with Walker as the suspect until they find out more. They talk to Novak’s wife. She admits she had seen huge amounts of cash hidden in Novak’s gym bag one time and has confronted him about it. He admitted he was into something that was way over his head, but didn’t tell her anything more. One day, over the phone, she even heard him argue with Madrid about something. Arroyo confronts Madrid about the financial records and asks him if Novak was dirty. Madrid doesn’t give him an answer and, instead, asks him to make sure Walker is convicted. Walker had mentioned Novak was dirty, so Don and Walter ask him how he knows that. He explains that Novak was giving him drugs to sell, but he doesn’t know who Novak was working with because he only dealt with him. He even reveals the location where the money and drugs exchanged hands.

Walter and Don tell Arroyo what they have found out, but he still feels Novak was clean and defends him. They break open a locker at the location mentioned by Walker. The locker is empty, and there is rat hanging inside. Walter concludes Madrid is sending a message, but Arroyo isn’t convinced.

At the station, Don mentions to Arroyo that there was a gun found at the site of the shooting with Madrid’s DNA on it. Also, surveillance footage shows that Madrid was near Walker’s drop off point, but Arroyo is still in denial. Arroyo gets a call from Madrid and meets him. He asks Madrid if he really did it, and says he will get rid of all the evidence against him because he has been like a father to him. Arroyo says, after this is done, Madrid has to put down his papers and leave town. Madrid admits to everything and says he killed Novak because Novak wanted out, and was threatening to reveal everything to the DA.

Arroyo meets Don and Walter, and hands them the voice recorder he had hidden in his sock. Madrid is brought in, but he refuses to answer any questions, and asks for his lawyer. Deb tells Arroyo that his wife had called and she has found a sitter. She will be going with him to the banquet, which he has planned to go with Deb. Commissioner Dowdell meets Walter alone and says his reputation is at stake, because Novak was going to be his driver. So, as a favor, he wants Walter to make it look as if Novak was clean. At the banquet, Arroyo asks Walter to forget what he knows about him and Deb and says, in return, he will forget about the recording. Dowdell later announces that Novak is being posthumously promoted. Walter then admits to Don about the deal he struck with the Commissioner. He argues that it will help them both get a faster promotion, but Don isn’t interested and is really disappointed in him.

After the banquet, Walter gets drunk and Deb has to escort him home. She lays him on his bed and, in his drunken state, he blurts out that Arroyo doesn’t deserve her. She is visibly shocked that he knows and, just then, the scene flashes forward to seven years hence. Walter and Dowdell are done with their game and a prison guard arrives to take Dowdell away. Dowdell mentions that it was Walter who put him behind bars and Walter says it was nothing personal. The episode ends at this point.

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Warning: Golden Boy season 1 episode 4 guide may contain spoilers
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