Southland (2009–2013)
1 user 1 critic

Unknown Trouble 

A rookie LAPD cop has a very busy shift on his first day in the field while a seasoned detective handles an apparent kidnapping involving a young girl.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:


Rookie Ben Sherman's first day on the job is with his experienced partner who belittles him due to his silver-spoon upbringing. Their busy day ends with a call to investigate a noise complaint that deteriorates into a shootout. This incident involves a gang that had, earlier in the day, gunned down a teenage boy for no reason. Meanwhile Det Lydia Adams is assigned a missing child case, which appears to be a kidnapping by someone into pre-teen sex. Written by Ron Kerrigan <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Thriller


TV-14 | See all certifications »





Release Date:

9 April 2009 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


| (HD)

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


Both Shawn Hatosy and C. Thomas Howell have played serial killers in the show Criminal Minds (2005). See more »


Depending on how tight the shot is on the police car and the officers inside, sometimes the rearview mirror on the windshield is in place, sometimes it's been removed to not obstruct the view of the characters as they speak. See more »


[first lines]
Title card: Only 9,800 police officers patrol the city of Los Angeles, an area of 500 square miles and 4 million people...
[a wounded police officer is taken away by paramedics, and arrests are made following a street shooting; Officer Ben Sherman emerges from an apartment complex and crouches next to a dead man lying in the street, staring at the body]
Crime Scene Photographer: You okay, son?
[Sherman continues staring at the body, oblivious to the question]
Crime Scene Photographer: [insistently] You okay, son?
Narrator: Ben Sherman just finished phase ...
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References Punk'd (2003) See more »


Written by Roger Hodgson and Rick Davies
Performed by Supertramp
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User Reviews

The seeds of excellence
13 January 2017 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

'Unknown Trouble' is a curious pilot for "Southland" because this is a series that will eventually feature some finely-drawn characters, but this opener is primarily about the gimmick: the documentary style camera-work. The idea is to make the viewer a genuine fly-on- the- wall during these busts and it's a little surprising to revisit the show and see it dependent on cop archetypes. But like any other John Wells production, it hits you with an affecting scene when you least expect it. Here, it's with the greenhorn patrolman who's just (perfectly) shot his first bad guy - and whether he has the nerve to wear the badge again tomorrow.

This is a gritty drama, filled with blunt action (some of it harrowing). The characters may come at you fast and furious here, but give this just a little bit of time.

It will develop into something special.


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