The Bridge: “Yankee”

(Episode 2.01)

TV Reviews The Bridge
The Bridge: “Yankee”

At one point during the second season premiere of The Bridge, Sonya (Diane Kruger) asks, “Is this weird?”

And I screamed at the TV, “YES!” Sonya was about to sleep with Jack Dobbs (Nathan Phillips), the brother of Jim Dobbs—the man who killed her sister. Yes we know Sonya has the type of one-night stands that a therapist could analyze for hours, and yes, we know she has Asperger’s which makes her interpersonal relationships challenging. And yes, I understand that sleeping with Jack is a desperate attempt—a final grasp— at maintaining a connection with her sister. But, still, this little plot development may be (pardon the pun) a bridge too far for me.

The acclaimed drama had a lot to accomplish, and the whole hour was a little weird. With last season’s central serial killer mystery behind them, the show had to introduce a new villain and a new mystery. The extremely bloody opening scene had Monte P. Flagman (Lyle Lovett) discovering (confirming?) a mass murder at a model home. In true Monte form, he’s not that fazed by the discovery and mainly seems concerned with making sure he doesn’t get blood on his clothes.

Marco (Demian Bichir) remains depressed—despondent over the loss of his son and the fact that his wife left him. His wife, he tells Sonya, doesn’t even want him at the birth of his own child (so we know not that much time has passed, since Alma is still pregnant). Marco is nursing his pain with alcohol and spurning all attempts to be helped. But he’s still on the job and, during a raid, one of his fellow officers tries to kill him. All in all, things are not going well for Marco.

And thankfully Daniel Frye (Matthew Lillard) and Adriana Mendez (Emily Rios) are back, and have been bumped up to series regulars (whoo-hoo!). They were my two favorite characters last season. (I even advocated for the duo to get their own spin-off.) Daniel is now doing his version of sober—which consists of limiting himself to two drinks a day. His sponsor (Gary, played by Brian Baumgartner of The Office) knows this is a flawed plan. Lillard is so fantastic in this role, and I loved his exchange with Gary about the Rush t-shirt he was wearing. “Rush, really? You like them when you’re sober?”

Eva is living with Hank, but is in danger. The corrupt Juarez police officers know she’s there. “They know he saved her. She wasn’t supposed to be saved,” Marco tells Sonya. Hank takes Eva to live with Bob but not before taking a picture of Bob’s license plate and threatening the man.

Perhaps most importantly, we were also introduced to Eleanor Nacht (Franka Potente), a Mennonite cartel leader who is downright scary. Eleanor and her hitman go to see the manager of the bank where they’re storing (laundering?) money. She’s none too pleased that all that cash was found at Millie Quintana’s house last season. When a bank lackey accidentally spills hot tea on her, she has her hit man cut off his ear. Like I said, she’s pretty scary. We then see her and her hit man going into the house from the mass murder scene that opened the episode. So Eleanor is the likely perpetrator of that bloody scene. By the end of the hour, the hit man is dead and Eleanor is rinsing off her bloody body and asking two preteen boys for assistance. (My advice to those boys, “RUN!)

Sonya discovers the hit man’s dead body in the car that’s driving itself in circles in the desert and she’s got a new murder to investigate. There was quite a bit of exposition in this episode and a plethora of new characters, but it’s still too soon to tell just how The Bridge will fare in its second season.

Other thoughts on “Yankee”:

•Really appreciated the extensive “previously on The Bridge. It’s a loooong time between seasons on cable shows.
•No Charlotte Millright (Annabeth Gish) in this episode but she’ll be back, as will Brian Van Holt’s sleazy Ray.
•Also, no Steven Linder (Thomas M. Wright) in this episode. I didn’t miss him. At all.
What did you think of the second season premiere of The Bridge? Talk about it below.

Amy Amatangelo is a Boston-based freelance writer, a member of the Television Critics Association and a regular contributor to Paste. You can follow her on Twitter or her blog.

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