TNT’s Southland is no stranger to mixing its partners up, never wanting the audience to get too comfortable– with the relationship dynamics or the situations into which the characters are thrown everyday on the job. So it wasn’t surprising to see John Cooper’s latest trainee just quit on him early on. Out of that dissolved partnership comes a much more interesting, challenging one anyway. Cooper decides he is done with the boots for awhile and just wants to “be a cop” with another guy who knows what he’s doing having his back. Enter Anthony Ruivivar.
“We are a team. I’m kind of taking over Lucy Liu’s spot for the season, so you’ll see me and Cooper together pretty much for the rest of the season,” Ruivivar spilled when LA TV Insider Examiner visited the Los Angeles Southland set for season five.
“Cooper’s used to working with rookies. He’s like the rookie whisperer! So Lucero comes in—he transfers in—and he’s a vet; he knows what he’s doing; and so there’s a lot of kind of getting used to each other. John’s not used to dealing with someone who knows his [stuff].”
Ruivivar also previewed that his Lucero is “more of a prankster, more of a jokester” than “military-like” Cooper or any of Cooper’s past partners:
“He doesn’t take the job as seriously as John does, and he doesn’t have a filter at all. He’s more on the lines of Dewey, I guess. So what’s great is at first they have a rocky start because they’re feeling each other out, but then when Cooper realizes he knows what he’s doing, they start to form a great bond, and you’ll see Lucero, because he doesn’t have this filter, picking away at John, getting more information about his life,” he said.
Lucero is clearly the kind of guy who wants to cross over from being professional partners to being a kind of friends. Lucero will constantly talk about his wife with Cooper, and at one point in the season, he will even try to set Cooper up on a date. Though Cooper has never been closeted, but he has always been very tight-lipped and private about his personal life when on the job. Not everyone knows he is gay; not everyone knows he has been to rehab. So obviously an attempted double date is bound to end badly, but Ruivivar also previewed another major rough patch for the new partners:
“There’s one that happens between me and Cooper, and without giving too much away, it seems like the most simple of jobs that turns ugly really fast, and there’s a moment where [Lucero] think [he’s] really hurt him for life, and that freaks [him] out. As much as he’s a jokester, he prides himself on his work, and he prides himself on his partner, and I think that so far will definitely stick with Lucero,” Ruivivar said.
Southland airs on TNT on Wednesday nights at 10 p.m.
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