What Happened to Doug Stanton? Why Did Brandon Routh Leave The Rookie?

Douglas “Doug” Stanton is one of the antagonists of the third season of ABC’s police procedural showThe Rookie.’ When Angela Lopez becomes a detective, Doug becomes the training officer of Jackson West, only for them to have a tumultuous relationship. Since Doug is nothing short of a racist, he treats Jackson poorly, only for the latter to retaliate. Jackson tries his best to teach Doug a lesson for being a racist, which threatens the superior officer’s career severely. Although Brandon Routh’s character appears only in five episodes of the series, he leaves an impression on the viewers of the procedural drama. If you are eager to know what really happened to him, here’s what we can share! SPOILERS AHEAD.

Demotion and Transfer: Doug’s New Beginning

When Doug becomes Jackson’s training officer, the former is an infamous police officer who stereotypes people based on the race of the people he encounters. While training the rookie, Doug confronts several black people, which infuriates the former. Doug’s repeated and unacceptable actions ultimately lead them to a confrontation. In the fifth episode of the third season, the two officers follow a possible stolen car to an apartment complex. While they are divided, four thugs beat Jackson up. Although Doug witnesses the same, he doesn’t try to save his rookie. When Lucy Chen and Tim Bradford arrive at the site, Doug also runs to Jackson, only for the latter to switch on the training officer’s bodycam.

Since every bodycam would film two minutes before its activation, the video makes it clear that Doug didn’t try to save Jackson even after witnessing the same. Wade Grey then puts Doug on administrative leave and asks for his gun and badge. Doug then appeals his termination and wins the case, only to get reinstated by the LAPD to the force. He gets demoted to Police Officer II from PO III and loses the FTO role, only to end up in the Hollywood division of the police department. Even though Doug leaves the Mid-Wilshire station, Jackson sets out to hurt Doug to exact his vengeance on his former superior.

Jackson and Grey reach out to Doug’s new watch commander Sergeant Stella Porter to unravel the real face of the new appointment at the Hollywood division. Porter screens Doug’s bodycam footage of Jackson getting beaten up as a training aid, which makes his colleagues change their perception of the officer.

Doug’s Controversial Character: Designed for a Brief Run

Neither Brandon Routh nor ABC released a statement elaborating on the reasons behind the actor’s departure from ‘The Rookie.’ However, it isn’t hard to theorize why the ‘Legends of Tomorrow’ fame left the procedural series only after five episodes. Brandon was added to the cast of the show as a special guest star. Since he was booked initially for four episodes with a possibility for more, it is evident that the writers of the series envisioned Doug’s storyline to run for only a few episodes. The arc seemingly gets concluded in the fifth episode of the actor, making him appear in one more episode than the four he initially signed for.

Since Doug is introduced as a racist who threatens Jackson’s training period, it is evident that the character’s fall was always a part of the plans. In the thirteenth episode of the third season, Doug’s departure from the general setting of the show, LAPD’s Mid-Wilshire station, gets finalized. Since he leaves for Hollywood, his storyline gets concluded, paving the way for Brandon’s exit from the series. Since Doug’s story arc reaches a natural conclusion in the same episode, it is understandable that the actor possibly wasn’t asked to stay longer in the show. Since leaving the series, Brandon appears in several projects such as ‘The Nine Kittens of Christmas,’ ‘With Love,’ ‘The Flash,’ ‘Quantum Leap,’ etc.

Read More: Is Alyssa Diaz’s Angela Lopez Pregnant Again in The Rookie?