Accused – Season 1 Episode 13 “Samir’s Story” Recap & Review

Samir’s Story

Episode 13 of Accused opens in New Jersey Superior Court, where Samir, an accused, has been brought for the hearing. Samir Khalil is a Lyft cab driver who is also preparing for an exam to get into medical school. He is waiting to pick up a client when he receives a call from his protective and caring mother.

His client, Alice Baylor, arrives and is travelling to Boston by flight for a conference. Samir finds her familiar and asks if she has travelled with him earlier. She denies it and on the way, discovers an advertisement with her face and we come to know that she is a famous realtor in the city. He drops her at the airport and she tips and thanks him. It is shown that Samir has developed a liking for Alice. Later, we get to know that Samir’s boss is rude to him and he is appearing for the MCAT exam the next day, which will be his fourth attempt. 

While leaving the car at the workshop, he discovers that Alice has forgotten her phone in the car when he gets a call. It’s Alice, calling from the airport, and she asks him to keep the phone until she returns to New York. He offers to pick her up when she’s going to return to the city and she agrees, saying thank you. At home, Samir’s mother tells him about the perks of being a doctor. She works at a local doctor’s clinic where the doctor is earning a substantial amount of money. Samir retires to his room, curious to check Alice’s phone. He tries unlocking it but fails.  

The scene opens in the courtroom. It is being discussed that Samir is a refugee from Syria who was forced to flee his country when he was just 14 years old. He has no previous criminal record and no history of violence. The prosecutor charges him, claiming that he has a secret life filled with rage and obsession. Next, Samir writes his MCAT exam but is unable to concentrate and leaves the exam incomplete.

He visits his coworker, Thomas, who is having a party at his house. Samir tells him that he is unable to prepare for the MCAT so Thomas suggests he quit and try something else. He even promises to tell his mother about it. While they all are watching a match, Samir makes a comment about the choice of men women want to date which doesn’t go down well with Thomas’s friends and Samir leaves.

Samir reaches home and lies to his mother about the exam. He returns to his room and again tries unlocking Alice’s phone. This time he succeeds. He looks up the kind of music Alice likes and her favourite restaurants. At the airport, Samir is waiting for Alice. She asks him to drop her at a hospital in Manhattan. During the drive, he discusses her favourite places and the food she likes and they connect instantly. While he’s dropping her off, Samir observes her meeting up with a doctor who seems to be her boyfriend. 

After dropping Alice, Samir drives away but lands outside Alice’s house at night. He sees that Alice and her doctor boyfriend are romancing. Later, her boyfriend, Josh leaves the place and mistakes Samir to be the cab driver. Samir drops Josh to his home where he discovers that Josh is already a married man and has two children. He threatens Josh and asks him to break up with Alice. 

The next day, Samir visits Alice at one of her open houses and proposes his love to her. He lies that he is going to join a medical school in Columbia. She agrees to date him. They start meeting and dating each other. Samir has also traded his car for a new one to impress Alice.

During their first date, Alice tells Samir about her love life and how she always falls for older guys who are mysterious and aloof. Again the focus shifts to the case hearing and Thomas testifies against Samir, alleging that he has had a hard time with women. He never talked about his past, his childhood and that he might be traumatised by it.

It is later revealed that Samir has been on leave for over three weeks. He later returns home and has an argument with his mother, as he’s withdrawn ten thousand dollars without her knowledge. He leaves home angered and reaches Alice’s place. Alice breaks up with him and Josh, who’s at her house, appears from behind. They all have an argument and Alice shuts her door on both of them. Josh punches Samir after which Samir crawls back to his car.

While he is in his car, he is teased by Josh to come outside. Samir, while trying to escape, runs Josh over resulting in his death. The episode ends with Samir’s mother making a futile attempt at saving him at the court and the jury declaring Samir guilty of the murder of Josh.

The Episode Review

This was the first episode of ‘The Accused’ where the accused person has been proven guilty. It will definitely evoke different reactions from the audience, and there is a sense that many may not like it. Samir was a killer after all, unlike many other episodes. The creators definitely did not do a good job of layering Samir’s story with enough bite or moral conflict to make it interesting for viewers.

The plot of this episode seems to be an old fable with a woman involved with two men, and no twists or suspense at all. The placid storytelling did not seem inspired. Case in point, the scene of the court in the climax came across as a missed opportunity. After a while, Accused has disappointed with one of their stories, leaving little to no room for debate or controversy. When has that ever been a good thing?

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