Death and Other Details Episode 8 ‘Vanishing’ Recap & Ending Explained: “Death and Other Details” is a Hulu murder mystery series set aboard a luxury ocean liner. It borrows from Agatha Christie’s locked room mystery tales and features the filthy rich people on vacation milieu from HBO’s superior dark comedy series, “The White Lotus.” So far, “Death and Other Details” has struggled to rise above its derivative aspects. The episode 8, ‘Vanishing,’ is no exception. “Death and Other Details” episode 7 ‘Memorable’ took us away from the ship into Imogene’s (Violette Beane) suppressed memory. It was all to reveal one crucial detail: Imogene’s mom, Kira, was a whistleblower who teamed up with Celia Chun to take down the Colliers. 

This week’s episode 8 gets back to events immediately after the blackout and pretty much states the obvious in an uneventfully convoluted manner. Viktor Sams has claimed one more life in the “Death and Other Details” episode 8. It also ends on a note that promises more twisted games in the last two episodes. But considering how unnecessarily stretched and incohesive the show’s plot so far has been, there’s not much hope. Anyway, let’s keep track of the things that happened in the 8th episode, ‘Vanishing.’ Spoilers Ahead

Death and Other Details Episode 8 ‘Vanishing’ Recap:

What Is Celia Chun’s Future Plans for the Collier Mills?

The 7th episode ended with Imogene confronting Celia Chun (Lisa Lu), in the presence of Anna and Tripp Collier, about Celia’s acquaintance with her mother, Kira. “Death and Other Details” episode 8 goes back an hour before this confrontation, i.e., just before Llewellyn Mathers (Jere Burns) killed himself. We witness multiple character interactions and realizations happening simultaneously while Imogene takes a trip down memory lane under the guidance of Rufus Cotesworth (Mandy Patinkin). 

Celia Chun is seen fondly looking at an old photograph of herself and her husband. The granddaughter, Eleanor (Karoline), approaches Celia with the news of the legal team closing their deal on Collier Mills. Eleanor recommends Anna Collier for the CEO position, though the Chuns now hold the majority share. Celia Chun forebodingly says that Anna won’t have anything to run when they are finished with them. Teddy (Angela Zhou – also co-written this episode with the series creator Heidi Cole McAdams) is busy handling the blackout situation. She is informed that everything, including the generator, is down since someone hacked their system. 

Was Llewellyn Battling with Depression?

Subsequently, Teddy receives a letter from a guest. It’s from Llewellyn Mathers, containing his farewell to his mistress. Teddy rushes to the top deck, only to see Llewellyn jumping into the sea. Sitting alone, Teddy recalls her last conversation with Llewellyn in his suite. The lonely lawyer with a vintage wine bottle in his hand speaks of the burden he carries after spending decades sorting out all the messes made by the Colliers. Llewellyn says while the access to power was initially very addictive, it has gradually made him feel isolated. Teddy warns him that he is battling depression and he might harm himself. But Llewellyn is sure that he will keep on playing the game, whatever it takes. 

Anna Collier (Lauren Patten) hears the news of Llewellyn’s suicide and walks to his suite. She finds Imogene, all ready to search the lawyer’s room. Previously, Anna and Imogene had a verbal altercation (in episode 6) regarding the secrets behind the Colliers’ Jiangsu factory. At the present moment, too, Anna denies any wrongdoing. Later, Anna conveys the news of Llewellyn’s death to her parents, Lawrence (David Marshall Grant) and Katherine (Jayne Atkinson). Lawrence, in his usual caustic tone, calls Llewellyn weak. He further says they have kept him this long only as insurance and finds his death to be a favor to them all. 

The Guests Gather at the Celestial Hall

Leila (Pardis Saremi) and Eleanor have a brief, awkward interaction in the guest suite corridor. Searching for Anna, Leila comes across Tripp Collier (Jack Cutmore-Scott). She inquires whether he knew about the fling between Eleanor and Anna. Tripp says he knew, but it doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things. He is still grief-ridden, processing the murder of Governor Alexandra. Tripp fears that his father, Lawrence, is behind all of this. Leila assures him that the mastermind behind these murders goes after people like his father.

Jules (Hugo Diego Garcia) – the ship’s former head of security – is waiting to break out of the jail cell. It seems Imogene handed him a key during her previous visit to the cell. Jules overpowers a security guard and escapes from the cell. Meanwhile, Anna accompanies her parents to the Celestial Hall – the ship’s opulent bar and restaurant. Under Interpol Agent Hilde’s (Linda Emond) order, all the guests are ordered to gather at the Celestial Hall. Hilde asks Lawrence to wait there until her backup arrives. 

Was Llewellyn Mathers Poisoned like Alexandra?

Anna tries to mend her relationship with her wife, Leila. But Leila, followed by Anna and Tripp, walks to Celia Chun’s table and joins her. As the guests enjoy their meal despite the pressing concerns, a head waiter gathers the wine bottles and walks to the kitchen storage. Teddy is sitting and crying in a corner when the head waiter arrives. Unbeknownst to him, she observes the head waiter putting all the opened corks from the wine bottle into a tin box. Teddy suddenly has a realization regarding the uncorked vintage wine bottle Llewellyn held in his hands, which he said was sent to him by a guest. 

Teddy checks the corks in the box and finds one cork with a small syringe hole. Jules sees the ship owner, Sunil (Rahul Kohli), tied to a chair in his office. Teddy also arrives there, looking for Rufus. She reveals that Llewellyn was also poisoned. But what made the lawyer jump into the sea? In the Celestial Hall, Hilde questions Lawrence, who refuses to answer her questions unless she has a warrant. Meanwhile, Jules and Sunil think of taking the powerboat to find help. Lawrence leaves the hall, disinterested in talking about the company or anything. But Katherine moves to the Chuns’ table, endorsing Anna for the CEO position. 

Death and Other Details Episode 8 Vanishing Recap
A still from “Death and Other Details” Episode 8 ‘Vanishing.’

Was Celia Chun A Former Employee of Collier Mills?

But Celia Chun looks determined not to let Anna be the company’s CEO. When Anna says the board and clients expect a Collier to be in charge, Celia rebuffs that she isn’t even a Collier. Celia has learned from Father Toby (Danny Johnson) that Anna isn’t Lawrence’s biological daughter. In fact, Toby isn’t the only person with whom Katherine has had an affair. It doesn’t take much time to guess Anna’s biological father. It’s none other than the lawyer Llewellyn. Katherine says Llewellyn’s unrequited love for Kira, and Lawrence’s inability to love anyone brought them together for a brief time. Before leaving the hall, Katherine states she gave her children everything they desired, including the power and wealth to make mistakes. 

Just as Katherine leaves, Imogene makes her entry and drops another bomb. Anna is shocked to learn that Celia Chun was once an employee of the Collier Mills. Celia retorts she had a different name back then. A brief flashback takes us to Celia’s younger years. Fifty years ago, after China’s Cultural Revolution, she was seen working at a government-owned textile factory, where she met her future husband. Then, a decade later, after the birth of her daughter, the factory where Celia worked went to the Colliers. Their use of the banned toxic pigment, Captionem Blue, affects Celia’s beloved husband. After his death, Colliers’ lawyer, Llewellyn, handed Celia a large sum of money in exchange for her silence. With that money, Celia started her own company. She focused only on her company for the next two decades until, one day, Kira walked into her office with a file. 

Death and Other Details Episode 8 ‘Vanishing’ Ending Explained: 

Who Sent the Uncorked Wine Bottle to Llewellyn? 

After hearing Celia’s story, Imogene, as usual, states the apparent, i.e., Lawrence found it cheaper to pay the affected people than fix the problem. Then she utters more obvious things like the attempt to hide the wrongdoing is the reason behind Kira and Alexandra’s death. But Anna still defends her father. Imogene goes straight to Lawrence to ask him about her mother’s death. Interestingly, he addresses Imogene as Kira. Anna says her father has early-onset dementia, and it’s the reason behind his recent bad decisions. Lawrence hints that he was behind Kira’s death since she was asking too many questions. He did make a phone call to someone to ‘take care’ of Kira. 

Agent Hilde, Teddy, and Rufus inquire the head waiter about the uncorked wine bottle sent to Llewellyn’s suite. The head waiter denies Hilde’s accusation that he poisoned the wine. He says a guest simply asked him to deliver the bottle to Llewellyn. That guest is Katherine Collier. Teddy shares this news with Leila. Furthermore, they searched Katherine’s room to find ricin (used to poison Alexandra and Llewellyn) among her things. Processing all this information, Leila bafflingly says Katherine is Viktor Sams. 

Who Is Viktor Sams’ Next Victim? 

Imogene feels forlorn as she won’t get justice for her mother’s death since Lawrence will soon lose the memory of all his sinister deeds. Rufus consoles her. A scream garners their attention as they rush towards Anna. Katherine’s bloodied corpse is floating in the pool. Soon, a helicopter arrives, and Imogene thinks it’s the backup Hilde asked for. Sunil and Jules don’t find the motorboat on the lower deck and only see explosives, rigged and ready. The men from the helicopter are mercenary types, led by Viktor Sams’ lieutenant of sorts, Andreas Windeler. 

At the end of “Death and Other Details” episode 8, Andreas pistol whips Hilde and asks his men to gather the guests to play a game. There’s not much we learned from this episode apart from the bland expository backstory to Celia Chun. One more unlikeable character is dead. At this point, one might feel that whatever the sob stories are, I don’t give a damn about these wealthy SOBs ending up dead. Rufus and Imogene seem to have made zero progress in this episode. Rufus hovers in the periphery and does his usual mediocre detective work. Will they even unmask Viktor Sams’s identity? We will find out next week. Thankfully, the end is near. 

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Death and Other Details Episode 8 External Links: IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes
Death and Other Details Episode 8 Cast: Violette Beane, Mandy Patinkin, Lauren Patten, Angela Zhou, David Marshall Grant, Tamberla Perry, Jayne Atkinson, and Lisa Lu.

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