‘Gracepoint’ Episode 2 or Papa Don’t (Hit The) Preach

gracepoint 102 markpriestMiniseries just make me feel some type of way.  A simultaneous high and low like a limited edition pint of Ben & Jerry’s. There is a bittersweetness about going into a series and knowing that the writers have it all figured out and they aren’t trying to bullshit you with some voodoo formula that they’ll regurgitate season after season until their audience grows immune to it.  (Hi, Scandal!) I’d like to put it out there to the TVPTB (Television Powers That Be): step up your miniseries game.

That being said, Gracepoint has me a little more interested this week than last with multiple revelations.

The A-Story: Predictably, Danny’s father, Mark, was not on an emergency plumbing visit until 3 am the night Danny was killed.  A video camera has Mark getting out of his car near an empty Inn where Danny was supposedly seen, and by the episode’s end, the forensics team has found a match to Danny’s blood type and Mark’s fingerprints at the Inn.  When Carver questions Mark about his whereabouts that night, Mark claims he was out having drinks with “a friend” whose name he doesn’t recall.  Furthermore, a journal found at Danny’s home includes recent entries which point at Danny discovering what his dad “has been up to”, the knowledge of it bearing weight on Danny, and the phrase “Daddy’s gonna kill me know”.

The B-Story: The on-going side story here seems to be Ellie, our main character.  (Carver’s backstory is important as well but more on that in the bullets below.)  Ellie is torn between her investment in this town and duty as an objective police officer.  She has several stand-offs with Carver in this episode where it becomes clear that he does not approve of her sympathies for the townspeople.  The best exchange of the episode was between the two detectives:

Ellie: “Most people have a moral compass.”
Carver: “Compasses break.”

And how perfect is Anna Gunn’s performance?  She’s respectful and but strong.  What could easily and obviously be played as nervous, uncomfortable, or angry towards Carver comes off more like she knows he’s an asshole and is more scared that she’ll scare the whole town, rather than step all over her.

What We Know

  • Chloe’s boyfriend had her hiding a dime bag of coke at her place, although she claims Gemma Fisher, an Innkeeper in the center of town, gave it to her.
  • Reinhold claims to have seen Danny out by the cliffs at 7:30am two weeks before his death, with his notebook, talking to an unknown backpacker.
  • Carver has some kind of condition which causes him to loose visibility and requires an injection to stablize
  • Tommy seems more and more concerned about having to talk to the police regarding Danny
  • Paul, the town priest, left town at one point and has recently returned.
  • Beth is pregnant and has not told anyone but Father Paul
  • A creepy old lady named Susan Wright (amazing Jacki Weaver) is the cleaning lady at the Inn and seems to have Danny’s skateboard
  • A telephone company employee is either a seen a few too many episodes of The Ghost Whisperer or he’s actually getting messages from Danny beyond the grave — “Danny was put on a boat, or he was on a boat”
  • Carver’s case in Rosemont involved three missing girls, and when he “fumbled” the investigation he left town

What We Don’t Know

  • Why would Gemma, the Innkeeper/Bartender, back up Chloe’s story that she asked her to get the coke to the police if it turns out the coke belonged to Chloe’s boyfriend?
  • Who was the backpacker Danny was seen talking to that morning? Or is Reinhold lying?
  • What was the $500 under Danny’s bed from/for?
  • What is wrong with Carver?
  • Who is the blonde girl in Carver’s wallet?
  • What did the ghost whisperer mean by “She forgives you… about the pendant”? Was Danny really taken on a boat? Is he for real?
  • Is Beth going to have an abortion?
  • What’s the deal with the priest and who was the lady he was speaking to at church? Who is her daughter that needs him?
  • Why does Renee, the San Francisco reporter, have such a vested interest in this case?
  • What’s Father Paul’s history with Beth and the Solano’s and what about it caused Mark to threaten him?

Theories:

Might be too soon but I don’t think what happened at the Inn that night had much to do with Danny’s death.  He likely followed his dad there (affair? drug deal?), but got cut on something sneaking around in the dark and Mark never even knew Danny was there.  It looks to me like what this investigation will do is air out everyone’s dirty laundry on its way to get to an answer.  People that don’t want their business known will lie to cover it up and look suspicious along the way.  Plenty of red herrings and in the end we’ll see that a child’s murder is not the only evil at Gracepoint.

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