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The Shield: Playing Tight

The Strike Team's new strategy is to play by the rules in order to keep the I.A.D. from sniffing around the money they stole from the Armenian money train. Unfortunately, their plan is abruptly interrupted when a routine drug bust lands them right in the middle of a high-powered gun running ring. Soon they find themselves racing to disarm two rival gangs before a race war breaks out. When an old ally turns out to be the new leader of the One-Niners, they use him to set up a sting gun buy. Tension among Vic and the Strike Team increases when Dutch and Claudette begin investigating the murder of two Armenian gangsters tied to the money train robbery. Meanwhile, with her promotion to Captain on the horizon, Claudette faces a cruel reality when David decides to not only stay in his position but also implement some of her ideas to help clean up Farmington. After his blanket party in Season Two, Julian's manhood and ability as a cop are in question and Vic urges him to take action to get some respect back from the barn. Danny makes a plea to Aceveda to get her job back and Shane deals with the pressures of keeping his new girlfriend happy without interfering with his job.

Episode Info  

Episode number: 3x1
Production Number: 5012-03-301
Airdate: Tuesday March 09th, 2004

Guest Stars
Brian White (2)Brian White (2)
As Detective Tavon Garris
Cathy Cahlin RyanCathy Cahlin Ryan
As Corrine Mackey
David RaibonDavid Raibon
As Van Bro
David Rees SnellDavid Rees Snell
As Detective Ronald "Ronnie" Gardocki
Michele HicksMichele Hicks
As Mara Sewell
Sticky FingazSticky Fingaz
As Kern Little
Vincent AngellVincent Angell
As Lyor Slavaik
Chris Williams (1)Chris Williams (1)
As Agent Quigley

Co-Guest Stars
Autumn ChiklisAutumn Chiklis
As Cassidy Mackey
Frank RodriguezFrank Rodriguez
As Diagur Levi
Herzl TobeyHerzl Tobey
As Armin Chorekian
Hunter BodineHunter Bodine
As Henry
Joel RosenthalJoel Rosenthal
As Matthew Mackey
Matt CorboyMatt Corboy
As Ray Carlson
Matt GeraldMatt Gerald
As Tommy Hisk
Melanie MyersMelanie Myers
As Paula
Nigel GibbsNigel Gibbs
As Asst. Chief Roy Phillips
Cal GibsonCal Gibson
As Albert
Caroline MaceyCaroline Macey
As Doctor's Daughter
Jay BrownJay Brown
As Biff
Juan CarlosJuan Carlos
As Spotter
Rico BuenaRico Buena
As Jesse
As Arno's Wife

Main Cast
Michael ChiklisMichael Chiklis
As Detective Vic Mackey
Catherine DentCatherine Dent
As Officer Danielle "Danny" Sofer
Walton GogginsWalton Goggins
As Detective Shane Vendrell
Michael JaceMichael Jace
As Officer Julien Lowe
Jay KarnesJay Karnes
As Detective Holland "Dutch" Wagenbach
Benito MartinezBenito Martinez
As Captain/Councilman David Aceveda
CCH PounderCCH Pounder
As Detective Claudette Wyms
Kenny JohnsonKenny Johnson
As Detective Curtis "Lemonhead" Lemansky
Episode Notes
The Season 3 DVD includes scenes cut from this episode that include Dutch and Claudette busting in on the Armenian they arrest with the four guns, and Danny talking with Julien when she comes to see Aceveda.

This episode marks the return of Sticky Fingaz as Kern Little. The only guest star to appear in all three seasons of the show.

The opening shots with the Strike Team joking with each other was put in by Shawn Ryan as a major reflection moment, where they would end on the exact opposite moment in the season finale.

According to the timeline of the show, it's only been 48 hours since the last episode. Since then, the cutback to the Barn have taken fulleffect, hence why the Strike Team is riding around in a crap car, and not their usual Navigators.

ArtistSong TitlePlayed When
Kings of LeonHoly Roller Novocaine 
Rupert HolmesEscape 

Episode Quotes
(Looking at the crime photos)
Lemonhead: They killed these Armenians looking for our money train cash.
Shane: This means they still think it was an inside job.
Ronnie: What happens when they run out of feet and realize it was an outside job?
Vic: There's only four people who know we took that money, and they're all sitting right here. Stick to the plan.

(Looking at Van Bro's paintings.)
Shane: Where in the Bible does St. Schlong visit Our Lady of the D-cup?

Episode Goofs
When Vic takes down the suspect, the suspect elbow's him on the right side of the face. Yet when we see Vic's nose bleeding, it's bleeding out of the left nostril. Either Vic got a strange nose bleed, or the suspect got more of his face than we saw. If he did, shouldn't Vic be bleeding out of both nostrils?

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