As this is the penultimate episode of the first season with no confirmation of a second one to show itself, we should be reaching the end and the writers have decided to do this by having Stephen frame Dan.
The episode kicks off with the case of the week with a lifeguard (Toby) rescuing a woman caught in a rip and starting to drown. On the beach we see a mysterious blonde woman, who is later revealed to be Alice Clark, watching the lifeguard resuscitate the rescued woman successfully, only for her to suffer a seizure which kills her, which leads to the blonde woman running away.
We later find out the drowned woman’s name is Bec Phillips and she had ecstasy and rohypnol in her system, after the coroner finds a nightclub stamp on her arm, Zoe and Dan go to the bar where the bartender says he doesn’t remember her.
Over the course of the episode it’s revealed that the bartender sells ecstasy to patrons, and that the lifeguard who rescue Bec ultimately gave her the rophynol in bottled water to “rescue” her, not too dissimilar to fire bugs working as a firefighters who start fires to rescue people. Overall the case of the week was interesting with a good perp, but it wasn’t as thrilling as the progression of the serial killer case.
Kristof further profiles Stephen/the serial killer by adding that he deliberately sabotages a situation to get what he wants, which has been proven true with him so far, especially with his “jokes” to the staff about him being a suspect, and calling in a fake shark at the beach to “rescue” Amber a few episodes earlier.
When Jim and Dan reveal to the task force that Bob was dumped 10 minutes after being removed from the freezer, and frozen within 30 mins of being killed, and find an area of homes to search, Stephen knows that Jim, Dan and Zoe are only getting closer to finding out he’s the killer and decides to find another way of throwing them off—by framing Dan, which really started at the end of last week’s episode when he killed Pia.
Stephen’s way of covering up his tracks were logical but also too easy—he empties his freezer and dumps it in landfill where it’s destroyed, he just happens to find a stray hair from Bob’s head (which presents a continuity problem considering how meticulous he has been so far), and the search in Jim’s flat presents Stephen with the opportunity to both plant the hair in Dan’s freezer and the SIM card from Bob’s phone in the couch.
The fact that Dan had been planning on breaking up with Pia, went to her house and found the tooth on the floor and made the choice not to report it certainly didn’t help matters. Although Zoe and Dan’s discovery of Pia’s death by her body being pulled from a shark net from the ocean was well done and a great twist.
The episode ended with Dan being arrested for Stephen’s murder and while this happens, he covertly gives Pia’s tooth to Zoe, which he recovered at her home earlier. When Zoe finally unwraps the tooth in her car, she’s unsure what to think.
Overall, as a penultimate episode for the first season of a show with an uncertain future, I found it fell a little flat. While it was mostly solid, I feel that the writers are wrapping up the serial killer story arc too quickly, at the cost of continuity and flow. I’m looking forward to seeing the season finale and whether there will be a second season.