Episode 7 of Gloria Season 1 starts with Irina on the autopsy table. Bill feeds back the night’s events to James Wilson, claiming the death was self-defence. Henrique shows to oversee the damage, and tells Wilson he should really think about his next actions, hinting at letting the agent in question go.
Now, given Irina was working with Joao, Anne arrives and decides to set to work figuring out who the rogue agent is, going over those absent from work.
Joao is patched up by Carolina, who admits that Mia was at the 4th of July party. Apparently she was arguing with Miguel there but beyond this juicy bit of gossip, she doesn’t have much more information. With Joao under massive scrutiny now, and a gunshot wound in his shoulder that could give him away, Carolina suggests he run away.
Joao does no such thing though and heads back to his apartment to get the blood stains out of his clothes. Bill shows up on-site though, claiming there’s a gas leak and he needs to leave.
This is a front of course, an opportunity for Bill to take a look around and figure out if Joao is dirty or not. Joao keeps his cool and drives to headquarters, leaving Bill searching fruitlessly for clues.
Joao is brought in to talk with Wilson, who confronts him over his absence, late starts and numerous late nights. Unfortunately, Joao splashes blood over the floor from his wound while talking, and his blood loss is definitely something that’s causing him physical distress. Wilson even calls him out for looking ill but Joao smiles and weakly works his way through the questioning.
Now, the bloody clothes he was wearing the previous night actually happen to be in the toilet basin back home, which he retrieves after making it through the day event-free.
In his absence, the maid over at RARET mops up the blood spatter in Wilson’s office without thinking twice about it. With Joao seemingly in the clear, Carolina heads over to check on her lover. His wound is infected, and in need of a doctor, but Joao refuses. So naturally the pair make love instead, as you do.
Wilson shifts up the command hierarchy at RARET the following day, tasking Ramiro with teaming up alongside Engineer Parker when building a new antenna. At the same time, Bill shows to look around Miguel’s office under orders. Only, he immediately finds the doctor’s stash of photos and begins beating answers out of him.
Interestingly, the conversation then turns to Mia, whom Miguel has a history with. Coupled with the argument at the party, we learn that she wanted Miguel’s help to poison both James and Anne. Wilson is not actually aware of this fact, apparently, but Bill does learn about the blow to the back of Mia’s head that killed her. He deduces that it may well have been a hammer.
Miguel also throws Wilson under the bus here, mentioning indirectly to Bill that he’s been forced to keep his mouth shut. “If the report is excluding these details it’s because I’ve been told to do so.”
Interestingly, in the wake of this soapy romance between Joao and Carolina, it turns out Fernando is still alive. It was perhaps obvious, given we didn’t seen his death on-screen, but he shows up at the barracks haunted by what he’s done. His story involves killing a child out by the river, and he’s clearly in a rough way.
Over in Gloria, Joao meets up with Alexandre and mentions a get-together with James and all his buddies. Alexandre doesn’t think he should go, reminding Joao that this is way too risky. If he’s compromised or found out – especially while sporting this wound – then it will mess up the whole operation.
Joao is also forced to watch in horror as Otilia heads into the lake with her baby. “Our objective is bigger, we’re at war.” Alexandre reminds him as she walks into the water silently.
At the party it’s not actually Joao who’s the weak-link but Carolina. Anne, like a shark that smells blood, casually grills her about the extra-curricular activities she’s been up to. She promises to keep her secret about sleeping with Joao but it certainly rattles her.
When she leaves out the front, Joao decides to sabotage the whole party – and the Wilson residence – turning on the gas stove and lighting a match to go off. As he does the rounds, Joao learns that Sofia is still inside the house, upstairs in her room. Joao rushes into the burning building, just as it explodes.
The Episode Review
It’s fair to say Joao is going to survive this but episode 7 also highlights a much larger problem with Gloria that’s just starting to come to the foreground here. The line between espionage drama and soapy shenanigans have been well-tempered but this chapter pushes it over the edge. We go full-on melodrama here, which leads to some plot contrivances.
From the blood spatters that go nowhere (are you telling me Wilson, who’s super suspicious of everything, didn’t even look at the floor for the rest of the day?) to the forbidden romance angle, it all feels a little too soapy and it loses sight of this espionage thriller that the first half had done so well to balance.
Of course, all of this then compounds to the burning house at the end, which Joao will undoubtedly come away from absolutely fine. I can’t see him dying but if he manages to walk away without so much as a burn, it’ll push this into the realm of unbelievability, giving our protagonist some serious plot armour that he hasn’t earned.
For now though, Gloria bows out with an episode that takes a step back from what we’ve seen before.