Last Exit to Brooklyn
The Alienist: Angel Of Darkness has had quite the run these past 4 weeks. In a way, this second season has matched the first blow for blow and it’s a shame we haven’t had longer to digest this crime drama. While it still works as a double-bill binge-fest, it’s also a little disappointing we haven’t had longer with these characters.
Having said that though, this penultimate chapter sets things up nicely for a tense and nail-biting finish as a big cliffhanger leaves the future for our characters looking bleak.
Episode 7 of The Alienist Season 2 begins with Libby hiding out in Brooklyn. Given what our characters found out last episode, they’re closing in on her location. However, Burns is also desperate to find her and uses this as a means to race our trio there. His tactics are underhanded, and after beating down a man close to GooGoo, tries to bribe him into working alongside the police. He also hints that killing Libby wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world.
Karen is departing in two weeks for a position at a new job. As Laszlo shows his surprise at the move, she asks whether there’s any reason for her to stay. For now our doctor remains quiet but let’s hope he comes to his senses before the season is out!
Karen introduces him to Alice, a hermaphrodite who knew about Rose and backs up the story about suckling. As the duo think it over, they realize this ties into the idea of abandonment and needing to be loved.
It turns out Doyle and Burns aren’t as smart as they initially thought. GooGoo’s right-hand man immediately reveals to GooGoo exactly what happened and warns them. However, he gets a swift punch to the nose for his honesty.
Along with Burns, the group reconvene at Mallory Hunter’s apartment and begin asking her questions. It turns out she fabricated the accusation of Libby coming at her with a knife. She had Libby (whose real name is actually Elspeth) locked up and Libby’s daughter taken into state custody. Mallory did all of this to wipe her hands of any familial responsibilities and give herself freedom following her husband committing suicide. I think it’s fair to say this woman is not winning Mother of the year anytime soon.
Meanwhile, GooGoo returns to Libby and reveals that he’s found them a way out of this mess. With Vanderbilt offering a reward, they won’t stop searching for the child and he realizes enough is enough. When she fails to see reason, he pushes Libby against the wall and takes off with the child.
When GooGoo returns, Libby is beside herself with anger and comes at him with a knife. However, he holds her down and tells Libby he’s come back and thought twice about giving the child up.
Burns decides to use what he knows about Libby to lure her out of hiding and into a trap. Alone, he heads into Mallory’s apartment and offers her a proposition. That proposition includes photos being taken of this girl at home.
As they make the morning papers, Sara sees this first-hand and struggles to compose herself. John heads back to work and confronts his boss about the perverse nature of the story they’re spinning and using as bait. The subject of Violet is then brought up as John is put in a difficult position over where his future lies.
Laszlo and Sara realize what’s happening and race up to Mallory’s in order to take the child away. Only, it’s too late given Libby is several blocks away and heading straight for them. Libby is clever and sends a decoy there with a present for them all – a single bullet.
As the officers head outside, they spy Libby and chase after her through the streets. Only, this goes awry when Doyle manages to corner her in a warehouse. He takes his eyes off her and underestimates the girl, receiving a swift knife to the throat for his troubles.
The young girl Clara is taken away by Laszlo while Violet awaits John showing up. However, before he shows up he phones Sara and asks her just what she wants. He promises to make a decision for them both and bids her goodnight. As he does, a single tears falls down Sara’s face.
As she gets off the phone, Libby shows up at Sara’s detective agency and holds a gun up at her face. She promises her freedom and a chance to reunite with her child in exchange for giving the Vanderbilt child back. It’s not enough for Libby though and she grits her teeth, ready to fire. Thankfully John shows up and grabs the girl. Only, they come to a stalemate as Libby holds John up at knife-point while Sara has a gun to Libby’s head.
The Review Write-Up
What a dramatic finish! This penultimate episode to The Alienist really starts to bring everything together in the best possible way. Not only do we get more history and back-story for Libby, it’s also cvleverly disguised around this cat and mouse game.
Seeing the contrasting police tactics at work is a nice touch too and all of this leads into that big cliffhanger at the end.
The Alienist: Angel Of Darkness has been a wonderful series and if the finale can close things out with a bang, we could definitely be looking at one of the bright sparks in an otherwise grim and dark year.