Avi’s drawing now reveals Nora and now Kathleen is confused. What are Avi’s instincts trying to draw him to? There has got to be some sort of clue that he is not seeing. And it is right in front of his eyes. Avi beseeched Earl to investigate the background of the case again. Michael Rosen shows up at the station and hands over the manuscript Zach submitted to Avi and Janine.
Michael posits that each always writes with the perspective of “looking in from the outside”, which basically means that he cannot quite get to the root of the subject he is writing about. But the work he submits now has turned the tables and it has coincided with the disappearance of Vincent.
Avi feels this is not random and could lead them somewhere. He plans to call the Millers and separately interview them. Avi first goes for Zach. The English tutor is already very nervous and defensive about his presumed involvement in Vincent’s disappearance. Avi’s accusatory tone further worsens that feeling and Zach feels attacked.
Avi questions him about all questions: his sexuality, if the letters were written by Vincent, and if he felt the need for revenge for kissing Dania. Zach does not have clear answers but it does seem like he is saying the truth.
Janine questions Dania in another corner of the station. She reveals something startling that prompts Janine to call up Avi to listen for himself. She tells them that she slipped the letters under the Conte’s door out of compassion. The detectives have a rendezvous to discuss the implications of the parents’ inaction and Avi is convinced they know that Vincent is already dead. That is why they did not jump the instant they received the letters to give them to the police. They knew not giving the letters will not change the outcome of their investigation.
Avi sets up a trap through Dania. He instructs her to call Nora and her reaction confirms Avi’s theory, even though he is reluctant to implicate Nora as he feels she does not have anything to do with the murder. Earl investigates a call from a daycare that received a bomb threat. The proprietor, Anna Harvey, dismisses them as an attempt to sabotage her business and there is no further development on it in this episode until the end.
Avi confronts Nora in the station about not calling him. But her tone resembles that of Leonard. She feels Avi is seeing them as suspects and that she does not want to be seen in that light. What has caused the sudden change in her belief? Avi’s tone changes too. He openly accuses Nora of knowing that Vincent is dead. He says he never saw any hope in Nora’s eyes but only pain and resignation about the fact that he is not coming back. Others behind the glass feel he is overstepping his lines when he declares to Nora that they have found Vincent’s body.
When they found Vincent’s backpack in episode one, Avi matched the content with that of his schedule. The books he had were completely different, indicating that he did not pack his backpack if he had intentions of going to school and was somehow taken away en-route. He implores Nora to give them their version before Leonard does to give her an advantage. And Avi is right. Nora begins talking about an argument between Vincent and Leonard. He caught Vincent being inappropriate with Olivia and could not contain his anger.
In the ensuing physical altercation, he pushed his son against the wall and Vincent banged his head fatally. Leonard then packed his body in a suitcase and threw it into the river. That is where the large suitcase is. They retrieve the body from the river and Leonard is arrested. Janine tries to comfort Avi over drinks about his work on the case. Avi feels he misread everything but Janine says all that matters is the fact that he broke the case. He meets with the Millers the next day. In conversation, he suddenly realizes something.
When Dania suggests that Vincent was not capable of doing that to his sister, Avi replays the events of the first night he interviewed Olivia. Leonard says that he “needed to be present” while Avi asked the questions and Janine reported that the psychologist said, “either Olivia is protecting Vincent or blocking something out”. It was Leonard who was abusing Olivia and Vincent walked in on him, not the other way around. Olivia confirms it and Leonard, who is out on bail, holds a gun to Avi. The detective capably handles the situation and neutralizes Leonard, who is then arrested.
Avi pays his tribute to the boy by going into his room and chanting a prayer. In the last scene, we see someone actually plant a bomb at the daycare, indicating that the threat was indeed real.
The Episode Review
Unceremonious, anti-climatic, unsatisfactory; you can have your pick. Either of those words or a combination of them define episode 4 well enough.
It is not to doubt about how the mystery was rounded off. But the eventual lead-up to the parents being the real culprit was very weak. For the first three episodes, I felt the makers chose to focus a lot more on the detective work when the real work should have been to build up the Conte household. Their not choosing to do so and coming up with this ending is disappointing.
More often than not, when watching shows/movies about solving a murder, viewers tend to associate more with how the solvers reach the end, rather than the end itself.
That seems like a missed trick to me. All of the conclusions seem too random and haphazardly put together. With the final scene of the episode setting up a new case for Avi and co, Vincent Conte’s disappearance finally stands resolved. But somehow, a part of the viewers might have wished for it to have carried on and to have ended on a better note.