Talk about topical! Coroner Season 1 Episode 6 couldn’t have been more relevant to current events if it tried. And remember, this originally aired in Canada back in early 2019.
It just goes to show how long these issues have been prevalent. Yet, as Jenny’s boss, Bryan, pointed out, people who came before her and people who will follow after her strove to implement de-escalation training for the police. And here we are.
What happened to Kofi was incredibly tragic. In no way did he deserve it. It looks like he might get justice, emphasis on the word might, but still. It won’t bring him back.
Jenny: Ms. Abanda, I want you to speak for your brother, Kofi, today. But fr us to d that, your questions can’t show any bias.
Ms. Abanda: Well, Madam Coroner, the only bias in this court is the systemic targeting of Black and Indigenous people.
Jenny: I don’t disagree. I support any and all discussions on the inbalances in our system when it comes time for recommendations. But today is about the facts in this case.
Ms. Abanda: FACT: Kofi fell in with stupid people when he was young. AND FACT: He had a problem with drugs. FACT: He pulled himself up, and out, to become a good, honest man. Yet still, he dies needlessly at the hands’ of police. FACT.
Up to this point, McAvoy hasn’t been a favorite of mine. He’s witty, and he seems to have a good rapport with Jenny when they are on good terms. But a few of the things he’s said have rubbed me the wrong way. He really shone in this episode. though.
His strengths and flaws were on display, and they were all beautiful. A good character is flawed because nothing is more relatable and human than a flawed human being.
McAvoy has been on the receiving end of prejudice, but he also has his own. Like many of us, he wanted to believe that the justice system in place would protect those in need.
He knows it isn’t that black and white. He knows where he came from. But he wants things to be different so badly.
McAvoy: Why are you doing this? Toting around your creepy cooler?
Jenny: It’s not creepy.
McAvoy: Oh, it’s creepy. Hiding from your boss, doing urine kits in my car?
Jenny: I don’t know. Okay. It’s like, people don’t trust that I can do my job. That’s why the Abandas are still sitting in my courtroom. It’s why my boss wants to replace me. Oh, and my son. My son is s mad at me that he is uh staying with his grandmother right now, so.
McAvoy: Shit. You’re batting 1000. We’re from the same area, the Abandas and me. Ms. Kenia was always good to me. You know, right around the time I became a cop, people started treating me different. Everyone but them. They never changed up on me, but I still stopped coming around. I wanted to make things better first. Change things, help the community grow, Then I’d be welcomed back. I was gonna be a hero. Yo, yo, there’s that guy, he fixed everything, brought the cps and the community together and … I didn’t even know Kofi died until a month or so after. It hit me pretty hard.
Plus, he wants to be the reason. He has a major hero-complex, which makes so much sense given where he came from and what he chose to do with his life.
I loved it when he called out that officer who pulled him over. That was a clear case of racial profiling, but once she saw the badge, everything changed. That was McAvoy in control.
When he went after Deveaux, not so in control. He knows better than to do something like that. He has to. And yet …
Like I said, flawed. Sometimes anger overwhelms, especially when you realize the world is just not fair, and no matter how far you’ve come, you still can’t fix it.
Ms. Abanda: I would though like to discuss my brother’s trumpet next. It was our father’s. It was almost as old as Kofi. He played it every day, for hours. It was precious to him And because of this, I’m completely certain he would never have endangered it, let alone used it as a weapon.
Rory Durham: I’m happy to note Ms. Abanda’s opinion and move on, Madam Coroner.
McAvoy was distraught. He was angry. He had trusted the rules and the rules failed him, so he went a bit outside the box. A renegade, as it were.
It was dangerous. It could have screwed up their whole case. But I get why he felt he had to do it. And McAvoy never actually hurt Deveaux. Mostly he just scared the poop out of him.
If McAvoy had hurt Deveaux, he would have crossed a major line. It would have made it impossible for him to help people like Kofi moving forward. He didn’t cross the line, though. He just stepped incredibly close.
Aside from being angry and distraught, McAvoy was also a bit scared. Deveaux’s friends made it clear that the badge wouldn’t protect him if he chose the “wrong side.”
McAvoy was clearly shaken, yet brave enough to follow through. He has my respect for that alone, if nothing else.
Others were not so brave. I felt like going to Fuller beforehand was a bit of a giveaway. Someone was going to know. Someone was going to interfere.
And low and behold, they did. Their threats to McAvoy didn’t work, but whatever they said to Fuller had him lawyering up and lashing out. He was in a tough position, and it isn’t always easy to do the right thing. Not that that’s an excuse.
Plotwise, it worked to have Fuller back out. Not only did it lead to McAvoy losing it with Deveaux, which was a great scene, but it forced the case to rely on Jenny. She got to really prove what she could do, which is kind of the whole point of the show, right?
As much as this was a McAvoy centric episode, the writers did not forget about Jenny. This is her crusade against Dr. Peterson’s mistakes. She wants to fight injustice and is getting very little support.
Alison: It’s normal to be nervous,
Jenny: No, I’m not … I’m not nervous.
Alison: Sure you are. Nobody likes their first inquest. It’s a huge responsibility. You’re basically saying, these people died, and I’ll make it nevr happen again.
Very little, not none, because there is Alison, bless her. She’s so protective of Jenny, and it makes my heart happy.
Most everyone else was working against Jenny, and you could tell she felt it. Poor thing. She didn’t let it stop her. In fact, it just made her more determined.
This experience seems to have bridged the gap between Jenny and McAvoy, both of them bonding over their impossible tasks, and their desire for justice.
I’m glad they are back on good terms. The scene at McAvoy’s house was the best we’ve seen of them so far. This is the beginning of a beautiful friendship. They both need someone. The lives they lead are hard and lonely.
Speaking of loneliness, we didn’t see a speck of Liam this episode. Makes sense, since we were at the courthouse the majority of the episode. The format was a bit different because of that. This crime drama became a legal drama. It was a nice change of pace.
Kim: Detective Kim Taylor, Toronto Homicide Division. Aside from my duties as an investigator, I also teach Use-of-Force Training at the academy.
Leigh Mark: Could you please describe this for our jury?
Kim: Certainly. It’s the process of learning when and where lethal force may be applied. Regulation 926. Subsection 9 of the Police Services Act states that a member of the police force shall not draw, point, or discharge their firearm, unless he or she believes, on reasonable grounds, that to do so is necessary to protect against loss of life or bodily harm.
Leigh Marks: And would that apply in this case?
Kim: Unfortunately, yes. In the event of an EDP, emotionally disturbed person, they’re not always able to comply, which leads to escalation if officers are confronted with violence.
Jenny: And in this Use-of-Force Training, are Officers taught to de-escalate?
Kim: Of curse, it’s part of the training, but it’s not always practical in the field.
Jenny: In your opinion, could this incident have seen a different outcome.
Kim: Having reviewed the evidence and the statements from the officers involved, a different outcome was very unlikely.
I didn’t love that they had Detective Kim Taylor testify in favor of Deveaux. I’ve always liked her. She is just going according to her training, I suppose, and according to her own experience. Maybe the point is that even the good cops can be blind to the flaws in the system.
We checked in briefly with the personal arcs Jenny had been dealing with, but it was just a few phone calls. It’s like checking voicemail at the end of the day, a very minor afterthought to the episode.
But it was good. We don’t want to forget about Jenny’s dog-related discovery or Ross’s disillusionment with his mother. Still, having either plot point more prominent would have taken away from the overarching theme of the episode.
I wouldn’t mind more episodes like these, but they need to break them up a bit. Too many like this and it’s a completely different show. We’ll miss Ross and Liam if we don’t see them.
Rory Durham: Dr. Cooper, this is outrageous.
Jenny: Well, we can’t proceed until I’m satisfied with all the facts that I’m presented with.
Rory: Thes officers have ben through an SIU inquiry, they’re on desk duty. They need this resolved. You’re the Coroner, not the Pope.
Jenny: Well, I didn’t know that job was avaliable.
I could live without ever seeing the black dog again, but the mystery needs to be solved for Jenny’s peace of mind, not to mention ours.
What did you think Fanatics? Did you like the episode’s legal formatting? Did you appreciate the relevance of the topic to today’s America? Do you think McAvoy did the right thing when he confronted Deveaux?
Let us know in the comments, and remember you can watch Coroner online right here via TV Fanatic.
Coroner airs at 9/8c Wednesday on The CW.
Leora W is a staff writer for TV Fanatic..