Three Pines (Season 1), Episodes 5 & 6: With Three Pines’ approach to this week’s new mystery, you would think Glass Onion came out a little earlier than it was supposed to. It’s truly brave in a sense how the show doesn’t try to establish Armand Gamache as the next Sherlock, Poirot, or Marlowe. Director Sam Donovan must be in the middle of a constant battle between the devil on his shoulder pushing the compulsive urge to glamourize Gamache and the angel enlightening him with the right sense of letting the detective be. That is not to say there wasn’t ample opportunity to turn Gamache into the next hotshot detective with charming quirks.
<< Three Pines (Season 1), Episodes 3 & 4 Recap
We know Alfred Molina could nail it if he had to. But in the calm mirror of Three Pines, we see a reflection of a detective who doesn’t rely on flair or a characteristic, gimmicky “process” to add to the mystery’s intrigue. Three Pines relies on the emotions brought on by complex substances pouring out of its characters’ psyche. And when the narrative looks beyond the immediate case in hand, there’s always a formidable background browsing through the deeper issues that trouble the specific circumstances of the characters.
The Murder Stone part one & two invite a pretty predictable whodunnit. But even with all of its rich people stereotypes, cliched family troubles, and dangerously unresolved daddy issues, Episodes 5 & 6 maintain the gravitas the show has been faithfully instituting all along. We get closer to the disturbing truth about Blue Two Rivers’ disappearance. It was evidently a smart move for the makers to have Blue’s mystery follow along intermittently instead of turning it into a two-episode case like the others.
Three Pines (Season 1): Episode 5 & 6 Recap
The Murder Stone: Parts One & Two
It’s safe to say that I can now assume what Peter Morrow must’ve talked about with the last mystery’s deceased therapist. Granted, it comes off slightly whiny when the people born into a pile of cash go on about how hard their life has been. But for the sake of the all-around empathy that we’re supposed to evoke at the sight of misery, we feel a little bad for Peter. His business mogul and absolute bully of a dad, Charles Morrow, has passed. And as it always goes in a story of rich people, his assets are now to be thrown around amongst his kin. We learn that Peter had detached himself from his unusually cold family a while back. Although at the reading of the dead man’s will, he isn’t the only one who is a rare sight for the rest of the family. Estranged sister Julia has arrived just in time to be crowned with the ownership of the very hotel they are staying in for the wake. And that is where the trouble starts brewing up.
All is revealed after a Morrow family dinner which was about as pleasant as a nightmare. Charles’ trophy son Thomas is furious at Julia for getting what he thought was rightfully his. Wearing a mask of success and wielding the pseudo-confidence of being Daddy’s favorite doesn’t hide how rotten Thomas really is within. Heated exchanges make way for a peek at Julia’s past. Pregnant at 15, Julia had decided to take off with her boyfriend. Her plans, however, were drowned by a petty 12-year-old Peter, who decided to snitch to their father. And as any rich, misogynistic patriarch is expected to be, Charles was against abortion. Instead, he gave Julia’s son up for adoption. Traumatized, Julia left her family when she was 16, and they wiped off any trace of her like she never existed.
The estates and assets weren’t all Charles had left behind for his family. He had an artist carve out a life-sized figurine of himself and left it on the hotel premises for his family to marvel at. As fate would have it, Julia’s body is found crushed under the fallen-over statue of her dad. Staying in the same hotel is detective Gamache. His wedding anniversary is cut short when he is brought in to investigate Julia’s death. Joining him are once again Jean-Guy, Isabelle, and of course, the supremely disliked Nichol (they could really cut her some slack). Upon inspecting the body, Gamache concludes that it was, in fact, a murder. And taking a closer look at Charles’ figurine brings forth a more confusing puzzle. There are five animals carved on the stone figure, and they supposedly represent Charles’ five children.
Questioning the family and the hotel staff goes along at the same pace as figuring out what the animal carvings mean. The first one comes easy. The relatively less chaotic sibling Marion assumes the tortoise belongs to her. Checking her off the list of suspects, Gamache looks at the person the dog carving belongs to–and that person happens to be Peter Morrow. Although he tells the detectives that he was in his room all night, the CCTV footage clearly proves that he isn’t being quite truthful. But the suspicion is cleared off quite fast, with Peter accepting that he did lie. He only went out at night looking for Julia because he wanted to make amends for what he did when they were kids.
Meanwhile, Gamache gets a kinder picture of Julia from hotel staff Maurice. Like his mother before him, Maurice has spent his life working for the Morrows, and in his own words, Julia was the only one who was ever good to him. Thomas on the other hand, is furious at Maurice for removing the head of the stag from the lobby. While it’s suggested that the stag carving may be for Thomas, the confusion is soon cleared up. Thomas didn’t have it in him to shoot the stag on the hunting trip Charles had taken them on when they were kids. For the lack of a better option, everyone decided to assume that Julia had shot the stag and Charles had allowed Thomas to take the credit for it anyway. Gamache also learns that Thomas is, in fact, in deep financial trouble and that he had to ask his father for a loan. Instead of the money, Charles bestowed upon him an insult as always. Thomas being “the lame duck,” sticks the ownership of the duck carving to him. The mystery around the stag curving continues to puzzle Gamache.
A gun to the mouth (literally) ordeal has Gamache remove Thomas from the list of suspects. At the same time, searching Elliot’s room rewards the detectives with the murder weapon. Although he is with a previous assault charge and has been using a false identity to work at the hotel without having cops on his back, Elliot doesn’t seem to harbor any motive for killing Julia. While Gamache drowns in the confusing trail of the case, Kevin Kis gets in touch with Isabelle. Finally shedding some much-needed light on Blue’s disappearance, Kevin lets Isabelle in on the monstrous secret of the police department. According to what Kevin says, Blue and Tommy were murdered by the cops when they were stopped with a tobacco shipment. Looking through the CCTV footage she finds at a local place, and Isabella realizes that Kevin is telling the truth. Now investigating their own department for the brutal death of Blue Two Rivers, Gamache and Isabelle land themselves in a world of danger.
Three Pines (Season 1): Episodes 5 & 6 Ending Explained
Who killed Julia Morrow?
After uncovering almost everything he could about all the Morrow siblings, Gamache needs to take a look at the narcissistic patriarch himself in hopes of finding out something useful. One pretty broad piece of information catches the detective’s attention. When he was playing around with his will and changing it left and right to keep his kids on their toes, Charles had included six people, aside from his wife, in the will. Looking for a possible connection in the dark past of the strange family, Gamache first thinks that the sixth person in the will could be Julia’s estranged son. But that conclusion doesn’t satisfy him. When he finally starts looking in the right direction, Gamache notices the most obvious pattern of how rich people handle things that they want to hide. Could Charles have borne an illegitimate son?
As he immediately looks at the picture of the hunting trip, Gamache’s subconscious guides him to ask the right questions. If all the kids are present with their father in the picture, who clicked the picture? Thomas mentions that Maurice might have gone with them on that hunting trip. Walking into Maurice’s room as though he is under the influence of his instincts, Gamache finds Maurice attempting to make a run for it. All the possible exits being blocked by a hotel full of cops makes Maurice take Bean hostage.
Stopping two almost-deaths in such a short span of time definitely takes a toll on the troubled detective. After letting Bean go, Maurice breaks down and talks about how invisible he has always felt. Not only did Charles Morrow never acknowledge him as his own son, Maurice never received anything in return for serving him all his life. He had hoped that Charles would leave him the hotel because he has spent his entire life taking care of it. But Charles, clearly playing mind games with his family’s emotions, left it to Julia. Julia was Maurice’s last chance at having some hope. Her overall pleasant treatment of him made him think that they could run the hotel together. But following the footsteps of her father, Julia once again overlooked Maurice. Being triggered by another rejection drove Maurice to take her life. It’s not that Maurice nurtured any hope of being accepted by the family. Thomas getting credit for the stag that Maurice killed told him everything he needed to know about his father. All Maurice ever really wanted was to be seen. And attention comes his way in the most awful form at last.
What happens to Kevin Kis?
Being understandably suspicious of cops, Kevin has a hard time trusting Gamache. But knowing that his back is truly against the wall, Kevin gives in and asks Isabelle to set up a meeting with Gamache. A Vietnamese restaurant is chosen as the meeting point of the three. Kevin’s call goes unnoticed as Isabelle is neck-deep in the Morrows’ investigation. By the time Gamache and Isabelle reach the restaurant, Kevin is nowhere to be seen. Gamache receives a call that makes it certain that the blood pattern in Kevin’s house was, in fact, staged. The racial brutality of the police department indeed caused Blue and Tommy’s deaths. Isabelle learns that Kevin has been arrested. But they reach him a little too late. Kevin passed away in his holding cell. And the manner of his death clearly suggests that he has been murdered by someone who wants to cover their tracks. Investigating their own department will not be easy for Gamache and Isabelle. But as Isabelle has a grand responsibility of protecting her own community, and Gamache has to do right by Missy Tow Rivers’ ultimate sacrifice, they are both bound on the path of bringing Blue’s killers to justice.