Episode 17 of Prodigal Son delivers another case of the week for us to dissect while diving deeper into Eve’s ties with Bright’s past. The clues surrounding just who was inside the box ultimately paves way for a big reveal at the end involving Eve that leaves numerous question marks hanging over the direction of the show going forward. While the case this week isn’t as strong as previous episodes have been, the narrative progression for the over-arching story is enough to make up for this.
The episode begins with Bright having a dream that quickly turns into a nightmare involving Eve and blueberry muffins. When he wakes up, Eve greets him and the two embrace in bed. Outside, Bright speaks to Ainsley and is convinced Eve is lying to him. Given he nearly killed her in the past, he questions just why she’s come back. Ainsley writes this off as her being concerned for him but agrees to keep her eyes and ears open incase anything awry crops up.
This week the crime scene involves a man named Esra lying in a ball pit but with a glass bottle wedged into his neck. Bright theorizes that the killer has a “depraved heart” before receiving a call from Martin. They talk about the case but as the coroners move the body, the cork pops out the bottle prompting Edrisa to rush across the room and “save” Bright from the impact (which smashes a vase some way off from him).
At the station, Bright starts to investigate the different suspects, while tasking Dani with investigating Eve in the process. At Jessica’s, Eve shows her theory about who the girl in the box is; an obvious ploy to throw them off her scent. Ainsley sees through this though and figures out Eve’s lying. She leaves hastily when questioned, prompting Ainsley and Jessica to talk in private.
It turns out Esra withdrew a large amount of money from his account a week before dying and even worse, the aupair Esra hired called Christine doesn’t actually exist, she’s adopting a fake name. With this information they head up to see Esra’s wife. After questioning whether they had marital issues, they check the baby monitor and see Christine moving Nina. Upstairs however, Nina remains in her crib and Christine is nowhere to be seen.
At the police station, JT manages to track down Christine’s husband and via video call we learn she’s been missing for a year. With this information, Bright then visits Martin and talks to him about the case, coming to the conclusion that actually Elisa’s baby isn’t her own. It turns out she faked her own pregnancy to fool Esra – the plot thickens!
Back home, Ainsley and Jessica feed back to Bright what they’ve found out about Eve; she’s definitely connected to the girl in the box. Eve, as it turns out, has heard everything and she reveals herself and admits that she knows more than she’s letting on. The girl in the box is actually her sister.
Down at the station, it turns out Elisa’s surrogate was Christine and as she carried the child for her and Esra, she may be the one responsible for the murder. Turns out, it’s actually her ex-husband Lucas who wants Nina for himself as he believes the child is his. The night Christine entered Nina’s room was actually her saying goodbye to the child, not taking her away.
Bright finds Elisa and leads her outside, where Lucas comes face to face with Malcolm. A fight ensues but as Bright looks set to be overpowered, Elisa smashes a glass over Lucas’ head and saves the day.
Back at the station, Bright learns that JT is expecting a child but promises to keep things quiet while the case is resolved, with a touching sign of finality granted as Christine signs the adoption papers.
Back home, Bright finds Eve waiting for him. He confronts her over why she lied and Eve hands a picture of Sophia over, prompting Malcolm to jump back in time and see flashes of Malcolm in Martin’s car with the box. He apologises to her for what happened and embraces Eve as the episode closes out.
As more of Bright’s unfortunate past comes to fruition, the mystery around the girl in the box is finally resolved. Quite what the rest of the episodes hold in store for us remain to be seen but the series feels like it’s slipped back into a more formulaic case-of-the-week structure since the show has returned from its hiatus. The show is still enjoyable though, even with the cheesy bursts of humour thrown in, but it also feels like a far cry from the heights of those episodes involving the Junkyard Killer.
Still, there’s plenty more story to digest in the coming weeks and with Eve and Bright’s future still unknown at this point, it’ll be interesting to see what direction the show goes next.