Good Morning Veronica
Episode 1 of Good Morning Veronica begins with Veronica arriving at work after her morning routine. She immediately notices something up as a strange woman starts walking around aimlessly.
As we soon come to learn, this second woman is called Marta. Before arriving at the police station, she frantically sends an email in the morning – which fails to get through.
Nursing a blistered lip, Veronica immediately gets up to speak to her. Only, just as she does a man brandishes a gun and points it at another accused of raping and murdering his daughter.
With the officers distracted, Marta picks up the gun and shoots herself in the head.
It’s a shocking opener and one that catches Veronica completely off-guard. Despite one of the officers filming the entire event, it seems that the police want to sweep this under the rug.
Determined to get to the bottom of what’s going on, Veronica heads down to the mortuary where she speaks to Prata. Marta’s lip is certainly cause for concern but it’s the fingernails that alarm her the most. Deducing these are a result of depression, Veronica sets out to solve the case.
We then cut across to a woman named Janete Cruz who apologizes to her husband for miscarrying. It seems they’re trying for a baby but their attempts have – thus far at least – been unsuccessful. Although seemingly supportive, there’s certainly some uneasiness here.
The next day she requests 50 bucks to get some nice meat for dinner. After some initial tension, he hands over the money. Through some well-shot exposition, we learn that she’s being kept there against her will and has a secret stash of money she’s saving up.
Dinner that night is a tense affair too, as Claudio calls her worthless and admits that he knows she phoned her sister earlier on.
At the station, Carlos Alberto arrives and pressures the police chief to investigate the Marta suicide case immediately. Veronica happens to be there too and encourages her Uncle to give her the case. Eventually he agrees to let her look into this.
Grabbing the bull by the horns, Veronica starts to learn more about Marta’s life. She was senior staff for an architecture firm, single and with no kids. Marta was about to get married too but her partner left her for a younger model.
This brings her to Marta’s friend Regina, who mentions a man named Pietro – the same one from the emails – and how Marta showed up with her blistered lip not long after meeting him.
On her drive to the nursing home where her Father happens to be, Marta receives a call from Prata. He confirms Marta had no alcohol in her system and the blisters were actually a result of a roofie.
While investigating her house, Veronica notices a strange hooded figure leaving the apartment and a torn up picture inside the house. Are they covering up evidence or connected in some way?
Back at the station, Veronica remains determined to find the root cause of what’s going on. She asks Anita for details on the dating website Marta frequented but she brushes it off like it’s nothing. Nelson overhears the entire event though and offers a lifeline in the form of his expertise.
Veronica eventually learns that Marta’s final words “ideal love” are actually a double entendre; they’re the name of the dating website Marta was frequenting.
The investigation continues and Veronica takes to the news, telling women to get in touch if they’re being abused. One of those watching happens to be Janete but her oppressive partner arrives and tells her they’re heading out together, shutting off the TV.
A bus pulls up from Sao Luis and a young girl we’ve seen glimpses of this episode is cornered by Janete. She encourages her to work at their house and tells her to follow.
As she heads round the corner, Claudio lies in wait with a taser. He bundles her in the car while Janete can only sit in stunned silence.
The Episode Review
The topic of abuse is a delicate subject and something that’s very much prevalent in society – particularly Brazil. Seeing this depicted in a police procedural is a brave and measured approach, one that does well to add some believability to the narrative.
The serialized story is good and the strong themes are both sensitively handled and important. The characters are interesting so far and there’s a strong identity with this one to help it stand out alongside other crime dramas.
In a way, this bears some similarities to Unbelievable and the detective work is just as compelling. So far so good; this Brazilian series gets off to a strong start.