Welcome back to our weekly recap. Much of the focus with this week’s episode is on the creation of “a new Emma” and that’s probably a good thing. Emma’s been an interesting character up to this point, but she’s moved in circles without a ton of real motion and has sort of been defined by her vulnerability. At the end of the last episode, she was worse off than ever. Not only were her friends dying, but she was being exploited. It’s very refreshing to see her start to make the transformation into a smart, capable and proactive protagonist.
Up to this point, my major guess as to who the killer actually is was Kieran but I’m letting that go. He seems a little too obvious to be the killer at this point. He’s definitely shown that he might be something of a psycho, especially when he reveals the gun and pretends to attack Emma, but that doesn’t make him a killer. Now he seems like the kind of guy who will scare her if he has to if it means keeping her alive. He’s trying to coach her into finding her power, tapping into how strong she really is and that’s a much more interesting arc than the two of them have had up until now.
The subplot between Will and Jake has pretty much worn itself out, so it’s nice to see that storyline injected with new blood along the course of this episode. Will is not any more or less sympathetic than he has been in the past. Things are not going his way, but he might actually—hopefully—be starting to accept that he has to own up to his many mistakes.
Jake, on the other hand, is one of the very few characters so far to not begin to show any other, better sides. He just gets worse and worse. Whether he’s a killer or not, there are some very clear and present sociopathic tendencies. He’s manipulating Brooke and he’s blackmailing her father, then pinning that on Will. It’s pretty clear at this point that he’s not capable of caring about anyone but himself and that he will do anything to get what he wants.
It felt safe to assume that Brooke’s dad was having an affair, cheating on her mother while she was away, or that he was maybe involved in some drug trafficking. When we finally see the video of him, it’s a good, twisted surprise. Even if he didn’t kill Brooke’s mother, it certainly looks like he killed somebody and we’ve already seen how desperate he is to keep this covered up. Could this be a misunderstanding? Absolutely. But whatever the case, he’s involved in something bad.
The sheriff has also been one of my major suspects, but he was a lot nicer this week. On the other hand, with this show as with the films, I’m always more likely to suspect the nicer guy. I have a feeling just about every shady-seeming character will get their “They’re not as bad as you think they are” episode as the series continues to develop.
Without a doubt, the highlight of the episode was the candlelight vigil for Riley. I like how much attention is being paid to the character deaths, Riley in particular. It’s maybe the one thing the show can do that the movies truly never had time for.
It would have been nice to actually have a quiet remembrance of Riley, but that is sort of what last week’s episode was for. The scene itself is actually pretty suspenseful and the shots of the faces in the crowd are great.
At this point, I’m not sure where to go in trying to find a new suspect. Being so close to Emma, Aubrey and Noah could be a feasible choice. But I think Noah turning out to be one of the killers would actually somewhat cheapen Riley’s death. So I’m not ruling out either of them as a possibility, but I would prefer it be neither.
We’ve also gone two weeks without a kill. So at this point, I’m not only wondering who will go next, but when.