‘Gang Related’ Series Premiere Recap: Top 5 Spoilers

On tonight’s series premiere of Gang Related, Detective Ryan Lopez‘s two worlds collide. During the day, he protects the Los Angeles streets as a member of the L.A.P.D Gang Task Force. At night, he returns home to the Acosta family that raised him and feeds them intel for their crime organization Los Angelicos. He will have to start choosing sides when his partner is gunned down by a Los Angelicos member.

Here’s what happened in the series premiere of Gang Related. Click on the video above to see the official trailer for the crime drama.

1. Javier Acosta Saved Ryan Lopez as a Kid

Gang Related

(Richard Foreman/FOX)

The action starts in 1998 at a block party in East Los Angeles. A young Ryan Lopez goes to hang out with best friend Daniel Acosta, but Daniel’s older brother Carlos has other plans. He tells Ryan that he’s not welcome and steals his watch, which belonged to his father who passed away. When Ryan tries to fight back, Carlos and his friends break the kid’s arm.

Carlos and Daniel’s father, Javier Acosta (who everybody knows), comes over and breaks up the fight. He tells Ryan that he has “got a strength. I could use people like you.”

Flash forward to 2014, and Ryan’s still working undercover for the Acosta family and its crime organization Los Angelicos as member of the L.A.P.D Gang Task Force.

2. Carlos Shoots and Kills Ryan’s Partner

Ryan and his partner James Tanner go out for a celebratory drink after bringing down eight gang members that afternoon. Out in the parking lot, James spots a tagger and wants to go after him for a little fun.

The fun turns bad quickly. Ryan follows his partner into an abandoned warehouse and finds two dead guys lying near the door. Then he hears shots ring out and runs to find Tanner shot. The shooter is still there, and when he steps from the plastic curtain, Ryan sees its Carlos.

Tanner bleeds out and dies. Ryan pulls his gun on Carlos, but can’t take him down. Carlos tells Ryan “you never saw me” then shoots him in the shoulder. Luckily for Ryan, it’s a clean shot, through and through.

3. Acosta Family Is Trying to Go Straight

Javier wants his family out of the gang life, and he’s enlisted his younger son Daniel, a banker, to help him. Carlos thinks Daniel should stick to laundering Los Angelicos money, but Javier tells Daniel any money he give him will be clean.

While the Acosta family discusses their new life, Ryan walks in looking for Carlos. He tells Javier he understands his assignment undercover, but he didn’t sign up for innocent people to be shot. Javier apologizes and says Carlos made a mistake.

Also brewing on the home front, Daniel chooses his birthday celebration with his family and friend Ryan to propose to girlfriend Sylvia. It appears Sylvia and Ryan once had a romantic relationship, which may put a damper on Daniel’s intentions later on.

Gang Related


4. Gang Task Force Captures Carlos

Captain Sam Chapel devises a plan to go hard after the gangs by going after their wives, friends and family. He’s still focuses on bringing down the man who killed Tanner and the task force puts their full efforts into finding him.

Ryan teams up with Cassius Green and the two go to speak with a black gang member whose two friends were found dead in the warehouse Tanner died in. He doesn’t know the shooter, but he does know where the drug deal for a large shipment of a new type of cocaine called “fish scale” is going down.

The other two task force members Tae Kim and Veronice “Vee” Dotsen head over to Korea town. They get the name of a gangbanger who witnessed the shooting. With a little help from Vee’s taser gun, she convinces the gangbanger to give up the name of Carlos Acosta.

Ryan and the task force storm Carlos’ apartment and the Acosta son takes out the window running. Ryan is in pursuit and catches up when Carlos gets nailed by a ice cream truck. He has to slap the cuffs on Carlos, but finds out where the gun is that killed Tanner so he can hide it from police discovery.

5. Ryan Seeks His Own Revenge on Carlos

Carlos needs to make a deal to avoid a third strike (Vee planted drugs in his house when they couldn’t find his gun), and he threatens to give Ryan up. Ryan counters with telling his boss where the “fish scale” deal involving the Lords gang will take place instead.

Chapel’s task force successfully infiltrates the huge drug deal and Ryan takes out the Lords gang leader in an empty stairwell (a favor for Javier). His tip about the Lords military training helps the police avoid the bobby-trapped entrance, giving Ryan credit with his new partner Cassius.

Ryan isn’t done with Carlos though. He secretly tips off Cassius’ informant from the black gang about Carlos’ whereabouts so they can get retribution for the Acosta son killing two of their members. Ryan sits in his car across the street to watch the Sonny Corleone assault on Carlos.

Ryan better watch his back though. A curious Internal Affairs investigator, Paul Carter, notices at Tanner’s crime scene that Ryan never returned fire on the shooter. He tells the District Attorney’s office’s Jessica and she too becomes curious.

For any The Shield fans watching, executive producer Scott Rosenbaum threw in a couple shout outs to his old show, which many critics have compared Gang Related to. First is IA Detective Paul Carter played by Shield alum Jay Karnes. (IMDB also has Karnes co-star Catherine Dent playing the District Attorney in later episodes.)

Rosenbaum revealed the second on his Twitter feed.

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