The Equalizer (2021) s01e07 – Hunting Grounds

The episode opens with district attorney Jennifer Ferrin deciding she’s going to go after vigilante Queen Latifah because it’ll make a good “law and order” story for the media. Yep, Karen Ferrin (it even rhymes) will be going after Black woman Latifah who helps the BIPOC people the NYPD at best ignores, at worst murders. But as “The Equalizer” continues to exist in an alternate universe where Rona never happened, I guess they can try to get away with it.

The Ferrin subplot only pops up again at the end, when she tracks down Latifah’s erstwhile partner, NYPD detective Tory Kittles. We’re back to splitting “Equalizer” between Kittles episodes and Chris Noth episodes apparently; no Noth this episode.

Instead, it’s Latifah and Kittles trying to track down a serial killer whose latest victim starts the episode with forty-eight hours to live. Kittles doesn’t like Latifah’s methods, while Latifah’s more interested in Kittles’s parenting techniques (are his two sons a retcon) than his professional abilities. He’s a partially useful body to have around, otherwise Latifah can do it all on her own.

Including hack into the NYPD’s interrogation room cameras—thanks to tech guy Adam Goldberg and his sniper wife, Liza Lapira. “Equalizer” has finally figured out how much Goldberg and Lapira the show needs and it’s not a lot. There’s not even big, profoundly inaccurate tech exposition from Goldberg. He’s closer to being a welcome cast member than ever. And Lapira’s fine.

Meanwhile, Latifah’s aunt Lorraine Toussaint is starting to date online. Latifah’s not thrilled about it or daughter Laya DeLeon Hayes helping her figure it out. It’s a solid subplot though, just because Toussaint and Hayes are so fun together.

The serial killer pursuit—the NYPD missed the ten victim plus serial killer streak because they were all Black women—is all right, though the resolution leaves a lot to be desired. Along with the eventual serial killer, whose performance similarly leaves a lot to be desired.

Kittles and Latifah continue to be good together (regardless of him being superfluous), but his cop storylines are still pretty bland stuff. There’s only so many times it can turn out no one listened to him because he’s the only Black guy and for him to turn out to be right, only for him to turn around and defend the system.

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