The Purge returns this week with another good episode, blowing away the memory of the first season with a much improved second here as we reach the halfway point. The four different storylines start to grow in tension too and with two of them converging together, the second half of this series looks set to ramp up the drama.
We begin with The Bobby Sheridan Show, a radio broadcast with opposing sides questioning The Purge and the recent spate of Off-Purge killings. As the broadcast goes off-air, they show off a new app where instead of likes your popularity is measured based on death threats.
Its 117 days before the next purge and Ben is called in for questioning surrounding the campus killer. He tells the police nothing though and deflects their questioning by admitting to smoking weed.
Meanwhile, Esme continues to investigate Olivia, snapping photos and working undercover before she phones Darren and tells him she has a lead. Upon meeting him, she learns he’s been bugged and reveals the wire on his jacket. He mouths an apology, prompting her to hurry away as agents follow in hot pursuit.
Ryan briefs the others about their upcoming plan, overseen by his ex-police chief who reminds him she’s in charge of the operation now. Unfortunately she has them in a tough spot too and Ryan is forced to accept the help from her own crooked cops for the heist ahead. Marcus snatches up a gun back home and invites Sam and his wife over, determined to get to the bottom of the Purge night incident. He questions Sam and asks him why he put out a Purge contract on him and after some aggressive questioning, eventually admits to it and upon Marcus’ instruction, takes down his side.
Esme heads into Ryan’s garage to hide after evading the NFFA officers and after some back and forth, agrees to help her. As the agents enter soon after and search around, a fruitless search later sees them leave, while Esme admits she may have evidence linking the NFFA to Off-Purge killings.
As the episode closes out, Marcus learns Sam wasn’t alone as all the neighbours joined together for the Purge hit on him, while Esme joins Ryan’s team for the upcoming operation. Meanwhile, Kelen finds the God mask in Ben’s suitcase and learns he’s the campus killer, much to her shock.
Seeing Esme and Ryan’s stories converging together feels like a natural fit here and it’ll be interesting to see what part that plays alongside Marcus and Ben’s stories. I’ve said for a while that the series will end on another Purge night and seeing the way this series is going, I wouldn’t be surprised if we see one or more of our characters meet a gruesome end. At a guess, Marcus may need to fight off the entire neighbourhood while Ryan may double cross the Police Captain to get the upper-hand. Whatever way Purge night goes, Ben may end up being the big antagonist and I can’t see him surviving the night.
Whatever happens though, The Purge has been much improved this year and the split focus between four different characters has kept things interesting whilst weaving enough of a mystery in each to keep things engaging. As we cross the halfway point of the show, everything is left wide open here and quite how The Purge will end remains to be seen.