A man desperately scans New York’s Grand Central Station to locate his young daughter.
He finally spots her … in the custody of two cops who clearly want to talk to him. Having to make a choice fast, he yells to the child, “I love you!,” and makes a run for it.
Relax: It’s only a movie. So it was revealed in the next scene of “The City That Never Sleeps,” Friday’s (Oct. 4) CBS episode of “Blue Bloods” devised by writer and series executive producer Kevin Wade.
Norah O’Donnell then was seen interviewing the “fugitive” — actually actor Russell Berke, played by guest star Marc Blucas (“Buffy the Vampire Slayer”) — on the “CBS This Morning” set as an impatient Danny (Donnie Wahlberg) paced on the sidelines, having been assigned as the performer’s technical adviser for his next film.
Danny’s partner Maria (Marisa Ramirez) clearly was more enchanted by Berke en route to the detectives’ capture of a teenage suspect in a series of liquor-store robberies. Things didn’t go as planned, though, on two counts: The suspect fled, and Berke stopped him with the well-timed opening of a car door.
Adding insult to injury for Danny, the teen recognized Berke and went into “starstruck” mode, marveling that he’d been caught by a movie star. To top it, Danny found a fawning Linda (Amy Carlson), Erin (Bridget Moynahan) and Nicky (Sami Gayle) waiting to meet Berke back at the precinct — with Linda informing him that he was her “hall pass” from Danny. Even Danny’s normally unimpressed sergeant (Robert Clohessy) got in on the act.
And so did a drug-sniffing dog that detected something on Berke: allegedly medical marijuana, as he explained to Danny. Being a fan of the actor, Danny let him off the hook with a warning, then begged off from serving as his adviser.
Frank (Tom Selleck) was troubled by an exit-poll inference that, in his role as police commissioner, he’d lost touch with his officers. “I’m one of them,” he insisted to new police chief Dino (John Ventimiglia). “I have to be, to lead them.”
Dino replied, “You have their respect, Frank. That’s what matters.”
At home, Frank sought advice from Henry (Len Cariou). “You’re looking for love in the wrong places,” the elder Reagan said, but Frank remained determined to have “a sense of presence” among those he oversaw. To that end, he walked in on a roll call and sternly interacted with several officers — including Jamie’s (Will Estes) new partner Eddie (Vanessa Ray).
On patrol later, Eddie and Jamie were sent to the apartment of a woman (guest star Ali Wentworth, alias Mrs. George Stephanopoulos) who had filed the latest of several complaints about an apparent flasher in an apartment across from hers. Telling her there was no law against a resident keeping his shades up, whether he was clothed or not, Jamie asked her not to “waste the NYPD’s resources anymore.”
Danny wasn’t done with Berke yet: The actor claimed in a late-night call that he’d been stabbed and asked for Danny’s help. The detective went and found a bleeding Berke, who maintained he’d been mugged. Danny then took him to a doctor to have him “patched up” privately, per Berke’s request.
Frank continued his effort to reinforce his “sense of presence,” unexpectedly showing up at a riverfront rendezvous of several officers. The commissioner then told them his discovery of their being off the job during on-the-job hours, and their memo books being doctored, would remain between them. But he ordered them, “Move on.”
En route to find their lieutenant, who evidently was at a bar rather than on duty, Frank was detoured by a report a knife attack on a tourist.
On his way out of the visit to the doctor, Danny helped himself to Berke’s cell phone and determined two things from it: Berke was secretly gay, and he was looking for anonymous hookups. The actor claimed it was “research,” but Danny sensed a link to the knifing of the tourist. “There is a predator loose on the streets of this city,” he told Berke, “and you’re gonna help me find him.”
Assisting Danny in preparing a profile of the presumed assailant, Berke reluctantly handed over a DNA-carrying watch with the inscription, “From your Paramount Pictures family.” It turned up useful evidence, prompting Danny’s compliment, “You’re doin’ good, Hollywood.”
At the weekly family dinner, the other Reagans grilled Danny on what Berke was really like. Jamie commented that Frank, in his visit to the roll call earlier, had behaved like the strict drill sergeant played by R. Lee Ermey in the movie “Full Metal Jacket.” Henry supported Frank, though, explaining that a true leader has to display “a little show of force now and again.”
Danny tried, not entirely successfully, to keep Berke’s identity cloaked while asking his sergeant to approve their working a stakeout together. And Frank wanted to continue his mission to “root out the bad apples” in his force, prompting his aide Garrett (Gregory Jbara) to caution him about “the fine line between purpose and obsession.”
The shared stakeout happened, with Berke noting to Danny, “Everybody’s got two lives, public and private.” Danny countered that in his own case, “What you see is what you get.” Berke offered himself as bait for the attacker, and while the actor was out of contact, Danny was informed a suspect had been caught.
Maybe not the right one, though: Berke then told Danny, via phone, that he was watching someone he believed to be the culprit. As Danny was heading to meet him, Berke was attacked again by the knife wielder, leading Danny to fire and wound the perp. Agreeing to keep Berke’s secret life secret, Danny then told him to flee the scene.
Jamie and Eddie were called yet again to the apartment of the woman irritated by the supposed flasher — and this time, they brought along the man himself, who agreed to work things out with her. “I’ve got red wine, I’ve got white wine,” she said, suggesting an accord would be worked out soon.
Frank went to the home of the lieutenant (Tom Kemp) he’d expected to see at the bar, and found the man tending to his wife (Carole Demas, of the classic children’s show “The Magic Garden”), who was ailing from Lou Gehrig’s disease. Frank walked over to the bedridden woman and told her he “just came by to pay my respects.”
The commissioner then stayed and expressed his realization that the lieutenant had altered his officers’ memo books so he could get home to his wife ASAP. “Your men stuck their necks out for you,” Frank reflected, “and that says a hell of a lot.” He shook the lieutenant’s hand and left … for the bar, an after-hours hangout for many officers.
They stood at attention when he entered, but he told them, “I’m off-duty, too.” And as he was greeted by some of the cops, he said to the bartender — as Bruce Springsteen’s “We Take Care of Our Own” played over the loudspeakers — “‘For the house. On me.”