It’s hard to know where this episode goes “wrong.” It’s not a bad episode, but it’s not a great one either. It’s nowhere near as good as the last, whatever, five. And it’s co-written by Liz Doran, who adapted one of those previous excellent ones. So maybe it’s the source novel not just being that good? Or co-writer Chris Corbett fizzled?
Because it kind of should be an Essie Davis and best friend Tammy Macintosh episode, but isn’t. Even though the main plot involves shitbag industrialist Andrew Blackman threatening to out Macintosh for not being nice enough to him and expecting him to take his injections for his heart problem. He’s got proof she’s been flirting with the girls who work in his factory or something. The episode needs to treat Macintosh as a reluctantly viable suspect for about eight minutes and it goes through a lot of hoops to get there, plus some logic contortions, which ring hollow when it comes to Davis and Macintosh.
The best parts of the episode involve Ashleigh Cummings working undercover in the factory trying to figure out exactly what Blackman and sister Alison Whyte are doing. There are secret ledgers, extra shifts, and fatal factory floor accidents.
In addition to blowing the chance on the Davis and Macintosh stuff, the episode also wastes Miriam Margolyes, which seems sinful.
Davis’s principal subplot is nemesis Nicholas Bell writing to her from prison and offering to tell her what happened to her sister (who Bell’s convicted of killing but without the body found) in return for his freedom.
It feels like treading water on the plot line, frenetically so, with a bunch of the supporting cast involved with it just to scale it up. Nathan Page even gets involved with it at the end, as sort of an emphasizing device.
When the whole time it should’ve been spent with Davis and Macintosh.
The Cummings stuff makes up for it, especially Davis’s concern for her as well as beau Hugo Johnstone-Burt not being able to keep his cool once he discovers what she’s up to.
Just ought to be better.