Episode 5 of Stay Close begins 19 years ago with a raid. This man, Jamal, is subsequently arrested and thrown into jail for the murder of a man named Zain. Fast forward to present day and Jamal is still in prison. What link this has to everything, remains to be seen.
Meanwhile, Kayleigh continues to exhibits concerns over her mum, checking her tablet and working out where Megan has been visiting. Within this, she notices a location, specifically a pool bar 22 minutes drive away. So just to confirm, Megan started a brand new life… less than 30 minutes away from where she’s well-known as Cassie?
Mike questions Sarah about the suitcase of money he found. According to her, she panicked and took in from a log store when Niall was having one of his tantrums. Mike is not exactly happy but agrees to keep this a secret.
At the police station, Erin does some investigative work, checking the registration for Cassie and learning that she’s actually Megan now and has a “mum does yoga” life. Erin has her suspicions over Megan and believes this is where they should look. Broome though wants to continue on with pressing Stewart and following that lead.
The officers eventually turns their attention to social media. In doing so, they uncover the Pink Poirots, a group of women dedicated to solving crimes by using social media. Y’know, just like the cyber division at the police do.
Anyway, they head over to this woman, Priya, and find a whole bunch of photos up on her wall. These are all printouts from social media, including parties and important clues that could help piece together what happened that night.
As Broome checks the dates, he realizes that all the disappearances here occurred around the time of the carnival. Not only that, Jamal was incriminated for one of the deaths around that time, a guy called Zain. He was found with the murder weapon and a blood-stained t-shirt, which was enough to arrest him.
Naturally, the pair head off and question him about Zain. According to the official reports, Zain assaulted Jamal’s girlfriend so he gained revenge and killed him. Jamal calls out the flaws in the story, including how his jeans didn’t have a spatter of blood on them but his shirt was soaked. He’s adamant that he’s been set-up, given 25 years inside for his troubles. Any other guesses that it’s Goldberg responsible?
With Kayleigh tracking her Mum’s every move, Megan meets up with Ray. He found her by dumb luck but now Megan wants him to stay away. Instead, the pair end up kissing together. And just as they do, Kayleigh notices them and immediately rushes off, believing that Megan is having an affair on Dave.
Megan rushes out and tells Kayleigh everything, about how Ray is an “old friend” and how she used to work at Vipers. So naturally Megan arrives to see Dave and tells him to have a good time at his upcoming stag do. And not to speak to Kayleigh until he’s back. She’s going to try and clear up this whole mess without him finding out.
Meanwhile, Harry’s body is found in his house. It’s sloppily done, with only one bloodshot eye and a strange mark on his neck, which hints toward murder. And that, of course, is the correct assessment. When the police see this, they officially call it in as a murder.
At the same time, Simona shows up and points a gun at Ray in his studio. She demands the truth about what happened to Guy. It turns out Guy was dancing with another woman at the club that night, drunk and acting like an idiot. This seems to explain why a scuffle broke out in the club.
Eventually the pair do speak calmly, with Ray making a big decision and deciding to get rid of all his photo’s of Cassie. He’s going to try and move on with his life.
Broome shows up at Megan’s place, breaking the bad news about Harry. Alongside Erin, they decide they should talk about everything down at the station, laying all the cards out on the table. When they leave though, Barbie and Ken, arrive at Megan’s place. Not to see Megan though, but to confront Kayleigh.
The Episode Review
So just to confirm, Megan ran away from her old life and started a brand new life…20 minutes away from her old one. In that time she managed to set up a brand new persona, life and job. She went out and met Dave, they had three kids together who are all now a lot older, and in 19 years not once did she cross paths with Ray, Fester, Stewart, Lorraine or anyone else from that time… despite living in the same town. Okay then.
This show has such an incredulous premise that it makes everything else just seem unrealistic and difficult to get behind. How on earth Cassie/Megan managed to keep this a secret is anyone’s guess. Even worse, the police showing up at Priya’s and marveling over the social media profiles – the exact same work that the cyber division team at the police station handles – just breaks all the immersion with this.
However, the show does have an interesting mystery and there’s enough here to stick with this one to find out just how deep the rabbit hole goes. Unfortunately, this is also quickly establishing itself as one of the weakest Coben adaptations too.