Poker Face (Season 1) Episode 7 Recap & Ending Explained: With ‘Poker Face,’ we get a woman-on-run premise who investigates many cases during her journey. Over the period of seven episodes, it has almost started to feel like crime follows wherever she goes! Despite that minor conceit, the crime mystery narratives presented in each new episode provide gratification in the same way that solving a complex puzzle does. Even when you know how the picture will look in the end, you enjoy the journey.

With Poker Face, we witness the same, where we travel along with Charlie until she finds a complete, factual picture. However, you also notice that she does not have a larger purpose for why she solves these crimes. Like her past fascination with casino gambling, she gets a kick out of these investigations while using her superhuman skill as a lie-detector – of understanding truth from a façade.

If you are just as interested in seeing her travel like a rolling stone and deduce the truth of these cases, let’s take a look at what happens in the latest episode. Beware, there are spoilers ahead!

Poker Face (Season 1), Episode 7 Recap:

Episode 7: The Future of the Sport

Directed by Iain B. MacDonald, ‘The Future of the Sport’ plays out in the competitive world of race car tournaments. David McDowell (Charles Melton), a young face with the potential for a bright future, is racing against veteran Kyle/Keith Owens (Tim Blake Nelson), who prides himself on the expertise passed down through his past generations. It is a critical match for Kyle’s prestige since he has decided to retire right afterward. On the other hand, David is highly committed to this sport (and to win this particular match) to prove that he deserves just as much praise, if not more.

In a neck-and-neck race, both keep trying to champion their motives behind the race. Kyle takes the lead for the most part, coming across as the obvious winner. However, right at the last moment, David leaps to victory and ends the race with a soaring win. That obviously upsets Kyle, who resultantly reverts his decision to get retired. His new decision upsets his wife – Donna (Leslie Silva), and daughter, Katy (Jasmine Aiyana Garvin), since he had promised to hand over the baton to Katy.

Despite their disapproval, Kyle is firm in his decision. The main reason for him is to take the smirk off the young lad, who does not pay the respect he thinks he deserves. Later in the evening, Charles shows up at Kyle’s front yard to drive back his truck. (Turns out, this sport that they both are devoted to does not pay enough to sustain a living. So, beyond the racecourse, they both are blue-collar workers.)

Charles’ appearance reminds Kyle how he won’t gain the dignity and respect his past generations did. So, he plots revenge against Davis. He goes to McDowell’s home and damages Davis’ car engine with a fishhook so that his car will malfunction during their next race. And as he predicted, it does. The car crashes in the middle of the race, killing the driver inside.

Before this accident, Charlie (Natasha Lyonne) comes to work at a go-kart complex managed by Davis’ mother – Jean (Angel Desai). Just like every other gig Charlie gets along her path, she manages to charm her peers and creates a friendly relationship with them in no time. During one of her shifts, she sees Jean attentively watching a car race. She learns about Davis playing in it and witnesses his moment of victory along with Jean.

Later that day, at the complex, Davis has a brief chat with Charlie about the sport. She mentions how stupid she finds it since all they are doing is essentially driving around in circles! Since Davis is passionate about it and has made efforts to achieve the required skills, he dares her to try to win at least its arcade game version. Charlie tries and fails at it. She accepts her defeat in that fake racing and admits that it is harder than it looks. The moment she says it, Kyle feels that she is now into him and goes on to kiss her! She sees why he is attracted as clearly as day and resists his puppy love attraction.

After that awkward interaction, Katy walks in and challenges Davis to a go-kart race to prove his expertise. Charlie witnesses them competing and Katy winning over him without much struggle. It drives Davis crazy, and he shows it by hitting her during a rematch. Still, he loses yet again, and Katy gets to showcase her win as a win for her family. Jean notices his anger during this race and warns him against taking it out recklessly. She does not want him driven by his demons and failing at being a dignified human being.

Later that night, Jean leaves her home for a chore. While Davis is alone at their house, Kyle breaks into their garage to do the misdeed. Little did he know that Davis was watching him. However, the young lad does not disturb the veteran and goes to the garage only after Kyle leaves. He opens his car to look at what Kyle has done to his engine. He then decides to damage the seatbelt for his return revenge plan.

The next day, right before his race, Davis approaches Katy and manipulates her into wanting to enter that race instead of him. She agrees to take a victory lap and ends up running into an accident. Kyle gets ecstatic after the race seeing the promising young star failing in such an embarrassing way. His spirits go down the moment he learns that his daughter was driving that car. He feels terrible that it happened all because of him but does not reveal his hand in it to anyone.

Poker Face Season 1 Episode 7

Later, at the arcade, Davis brings up the topic of Katy’s car crash to Charlie, Jean, and his friend, Randy. He mentions the talks of his suspension since she crashed while driving ‘his’ car. He sees the reason for that crash to be her incompetence, not his fault. Charlie detects Davis lying and says it upfront. So, he turns to the other side and insinuates a ploy.

Along with Randy, he takes Charlie to see the car damage. In his garage, he leads them both to look at the fishhook right next to the engine. Randy then explains that it was attached to the gear tie, which could have made Katy turn so hard to suffer an accident. Seeing that they both bought that as a fact, Davis starts insinuating Kyle is at fault for his car’s malfunction since he was jealous of Davis’ rise to fame.

However, Davis does not reveal seeing Kyle. He only mentions getting a tow call that night. Hearing that, she offers to meet Kyle to seek the truth. During her brief dialogue with Kyle, she casually mentions the fishhook found inside the car’s engine that Katy drove. She then points at a photo that explains Kyle’s interest in fishing. Kyle immediately goes into defense mode and says that he has nothing to do with the accident. But Charlie gets a subtle admission of guilt from him by then.

The following day, Kyle goes on the news broadcast with his wife and confesses to the malfunction. He notes it was intended for Davis, but unfortunately, Katy became its victim. Charlie sees him doing that to overcome his guilt and feels like she has solved the case.

But later, she catches Davis lying to a young boy, saying that his seat belts are perfectly safe since Randy always inspects them before every race. She then goes to meet Randy and asks what happened to Katy’s seatbelt. He assumes it was a general wear-and-tear issue. But he also notes that seat belts are not checked during the pre-race testing, which solidifies her suspicion that Davis lied. But why? She starts looking for the reason. Back with Jean, she learns that Davis was at home when Kyle had gone along with his damage attempt. She then goes to Davis’ garage, starts looking around, and goes to hide the moment she hears him coming.

While she tries to sneak out, Davis finds her. She starts trying to get a confession out of him related to the seatbelt issue. She mentions him leading Randy to follow his version of the truth that included a detail that he couldn’t have possibly known – if he hadn’t seen Kyle entering his garage. Besides, during his TV confession, Kyle/Keith gave the confession exactly how Davis narrated it.

Charlie’s clever deduction makes Davis realize that the truth is out in the wide open. When he is about to hurt her, she saves herself by opening the garage door, which brings Jean inside. She then starts driving away from this town, having solved this case for herself. But a truck keeps following her, trying to crash into her car. She senses the danger and reverses the car to drive back from the opposite side.

Poker Face (Season 1), Episode 7 Ending Explained:

Why does Charlie return to meet Davis? What is the significance of their final conversation?

The next day, Davis goes to the racecourse, all geared up for his next race. He gets a cheer from the audience that he always thought he deserved but did not get for being overshadowed by Kyle. He enters his car, and when he is about to start driving, Charlie shows up next to his seat. While he tries to push her away verbally, she shows yet another piece of evidence that implicates him in Katy’s murder attempt.

Before letting Katy drive his car, Davis took out the old photo that he always keeps near the windshield because of its emotional value to him. She then mentions speaking with Donna, who cited Kyle’s flow state when he enters a race. To honor his devotion to the honest sport, Kyle confessed his guilt. Charlie implies that Davis should do the same. Besides she also speaks about Katy’s improved health, who is just as passionate about racing as him.

Through that, Charlie makes Davis see his competition returning to the sport. Meanwhile, she also adds a blot on his conscience and makes him contemplate why he wants to pursue this sport. Is it to get just a cheer and praise? But is it possible if he has no competition to provide him with that joy? The episode resorts its narrative on an open-ended note, which gives him and us so much to process.

Getting rid of future potential competition isn’t going to make Davis a champion. In Charlie’s words, Karma is a consequence! Charlie, leaving him like that, is like her telling him that he can’t run away from defeat all his life. Rather, she makes him rethink what he considers a victory and defeat.

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Poker Face (Season 1), Episode 7 Links: IMDB, Rotten Tomatoes
Poker Face (Season 1), Episode 7 Cast: Natasha Lyonne, Tim Blake Nelson, Charles Melton, Leslie Silva, Jasmine Aiyana Garvin, Angel Desai
Where to watch Poker Face

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