‘Graceland’ 1.04 Episode Recap And Review: Pizza Box

In week four of Graceland, three of the minor cast mates – Dale, Johnny and Paige, really get to flex their undercover muscle for the first time. In the episode, titled “Pizza Box”, Mike (Aaron Tveit) is recruited by Bello (Gbenga Akinnagbe) to train his henchmen on military style marksmanship, while Arkin and Jakes enlist the help of Tuturro to bust a local marijuana grower. The “pizza box” episode, which aired on June 27, boasted the heaviest plotline Gracies have seen thus far, as shown in the last ten minutes of the show. Eddie (Sheaun McKinney), Bello’s wingman suspects Warren is a fed, and ends up offing himself as a result.

Drama aside, the writers of Graceland finally give some back story to Manny Montana’s character, who grew up on the wrong side of Long Beach, and lost his brother to the Mexican drug cartel. Not only is Johnny a ladies man, he’s also a wild card who’s prone to going against his team’s orders. The first half of the episode finds Tuturro blowing his cover, as he tends to care more about his manly parts than he does solving a case.

Aaron Tveit’s character appears to be even more conflicted as an undercover agent, after he witnesses his first suicide, which he feels responsible for. What I didn’t quite understand about the pizza box is why the rookie was so bothered by the events that occurred. Aren’t FBI agents supposed to be tough and anti-emotional? I seriously cannot wait until Mike grows a pair.

One of the reasons Graceland is so enjoyable is because I find that the writers present opportunities for viewers to learn about law enforcement, and the “pizza box” episode definitely taught me some things. For example:

• Alternate names for marijuana (baby, chillums, ghandi, root, stack and zombie completely flew over my head!)

• Fundamentals in marksmanship

• Terms such as “pizza box” – a square medal awarded in the Marines during rifle qualification

Not sure what will happen next but I have a feeling Warren’s lady friend, Abby, is a spy for Daniel Sunjata’s Briggs or someone else at the bureau.

What are you looking forward to happening next? Tune in to Graceland tonight at 10p, on USA Network, and leave a comment below!


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