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Shawn Hatosy

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Integrity Check

Posted: 02/21/2012 6:48 pm

Tonight's episode of Southland will kick your ass. I haven't seen it yet, but I know exactly what to expect: Greatness.

John Wells and Christopher Chulack were pretty honest from the get-go in our first meeting about Southland. They were looking to create characters that were believable in the environment of the LAPD -- multi-dimensional, layered characters with real flaws; good-hearted cops mixed with the perfect amount of heroism and irony. Now in our fourth season, the well-written characters are alive and breathing... bad breath and all.

Tonight's episode falls in line with Southland's typical style -- tension is always bubbling below the surface, ready to rise and explode. Of course, there is humor but the theater is set, the curtains are yanked back and now it's time to see what our beloved characters will do next. This season, in my opinion, is about choices. What kind of cop is Ben becoming? What is Lydia going to do about the baby?

Tonight's episode is called "Integrity Check" and is confidently directed by Christopher Chulack. He has directed many of my favorite episodes in our four seasons including: "The Pilot," "Fixing a Hole," "Graduation Day" and this season's opener "Wednesday." He is the unofficial mastermind behind Southland Style , and since my first meeting with Chris four years ago, I have been inspired by his ability to wrestle the truth out of every situation.

He has a way of throwing gas on the emotional kindling, lighting it on fire, and capturing the blaze on camera. Sometimes when he calls "Cut!", I look around in a daze, thinking what the hell did Sammy just do?

I'll find out tonight along with the rest of you. Is it 10 p.m. yet?

Southland airs Tuesdays, 10 p.m. EST on TNT.