Joe has found fair Kate in quite a compromising position. All he can think to himself is: Wow, falling for a girl who could stab her frenemy to death … this is so me. Kate claims she is not the murderer and, much like Joe with Malcolm (not that she knows that yet), she just happened upon this dead body (and grabbed a knife?? Spontaneously? From WHERE?). But she can’t call security because if her dad were the one to get her out of this little pickle, he would own her, “which is worse than anything,” she says, which I think is sort of a tasteless thing to say over the still-warm corpse of a girl you know who just got murdered. It doesn’t take Kate long to point out to Joe that this situation looks pretty bad for him, too, so now they’re in this thing together. It’s the “You jump, I jump” of dead-body disposal.
While the rest of the party descends into debauchery — oodles of coke, rallying cries like “fuck democracy!” — and Roald gazes eerily into the night as he awaits an opportunity for a “private word” with Jonathan Moore, and Kate and Joe strategize. Each of them is horrified and impressed but also horrified again by how adept their new teammate is at hiding a dead body. It’s almost like somebody’s done this before! Kate’s final words for Gemma is that she was an “absolute muppet,” which, thanks to the 1975, is a Britishism I understand. They stash their girl in what looks like a hope chest just in time for Phoebe to burst in, uninvited, to announce to her friends that she caught Adam with a servant. Joe helps Phoebe realize that Adam has a kink he hasn’t told her about; Kate, brilliantly and hilariously, tells her friend to get out so she can Joe can have sex. Phoebe needs no additional prodding. Women supporting women! Unfortunately for Kate and Joe, as soon as they pick up the trunk, the bottom falls out, and Gemma smacks the floor again. You just can’t rely on musty antiques for this sort of heavy lifting.
Inspired by his own recent defenestration — everything is a copy! — Joe has the inspired idea to push Gemma out the window. He and Kate take Gemma to the game larder. Lots of bloody, sharp stuff in this freaky place. Just as Joe is wondering why his “pattern” is to “fall for a woman and hide corpses together,” Kate puts a knife to his throat. Understandably, she wants to know why he is so good at hiding bodies. I mean, I, too, would be worried about that, but you also need to hide a body right now! So maybe hold off on the Q&A session until after you’ve taken care of this?
Joe confesses that he was framed for Malcolm’s murder and thinks someone is trying to do something similar to Kate. Naturally, she is both intrigued and repulsed by the notion that Joe “took care of it” re: Malcolm’s body. He tells her a very carefully edited version of the truth: He’s been getting these stalker-ish texts from someone threatening to expose his past, where something bad happened that “cost me my son,” whose name he will not share with Kate. I groaned aloud at Kate’s realization that Joe was trying to protect her, the get-out-of-suspicions-free card that Joe has relied on since the mugging. (Will that attack end up being connected to all of this, you think?)
Again, I’m sorry that I don’t care at all about Phoebe and Adam, even though I think it’s very cool of her to have such an open mind about her boyfriend’s proclivities (“shame has no place in the boudoir”) and for her astute observation about what his kink, and his inability to enact it with her, says about their whole dynamic. I’m proud of her for dumping him, but also, they have no chemistry, and I never really bought them as a couple. Let’s get back to the body!
Kate wants to know how having sex with her played into Joe’s plan, which is where Joe is contractually obligated to say that having sex with her was NOT part of the plan, and here (again, this is required by law) is when Kate realizes that she was wearing a bracelet WITH HER NAME ON IT that slipped off in the game larder. I’m sorry, but I am LOSING MY MIND. Absolute fuckin’ amateur hour. I was hoping that she did this on purpose to shake Joe, pin all the murders on him, and reveal herself to be the big bad. But it would appear she was just uncharacteristically careless.
She returns to her room to find Phoebe there, mouth agape at the bloody rug they neglected to throw out the window with Gemma in it. Kate fills Phoebe in, and all of this is remarkably frictionless, just considering everything. “Gemma’s really more second-tier,” said Phoebe. “I mean, I’m gutted.” Phoebe convinces Kate that it’s wise to have the staff stay close by so that “Jonathan” can retrieve Kate’s bracelet without getting busted. Phoebe is relieved to be on benzos for this whole experience. Against all odds, she’s having a pretty good night!
Unfortunately for Joe, Roald, who hates him with the energy of a mustache-twirling cartoon villain, overheard this entire conversation. With the encouragement of Adam, who wants Jonathan Moore killed for being a “little snitch-ass spy,” Roald takes a rifle to the game larder and holds Joe hostage. He doesn’t kill Joe immediately but instead brings him back to the group (minus Kate and Phoebe, who are inconveniently MIA) and reports on what he found, Clue-style: Jonathan was in the game larder with Gemma’s body.
This is such a strange episode, energy-wise because a lot of theoretically thrilling and scary things are going down. But most of these characters don’t matter to us, and — stranger still, and this really sucks the momentum out of everything — the events of the episode don’t seem to matter much to them. Everybody here is on drugs, and no one is taking Roald’s proclamation seriously. I know their entire shtick is that they are rich idiots who only think about themselves, but I’d expect them to be somewhat more riled up about the prospect of their friend summarily executing a guy right in front of them. Also, there’s a serial killer on the loose! So wouldn’t that give everyone a little more pep in their step? How are we supposed to get excited about anything happening when it all feels so stakes-less and flat?
Roald decides to give Joe a head start (it’s like The Menu!), and then he’s off to go “peasant hunting.” You KNOW he was workshopping that this entire time and is stupidly proud of himself for the pun. Joe sprints for his life into the woods instead of, I don’t know, screaming Kate’s name and finding her upstairs so she can vouch for him and get him out of there. Just an idea, but I know it’s hard to think clearly under duress.
After Roald leaves, Phoebe and Kate come downstairs to get the update from their friends who — still! — have not moved or attempted to leave and are just sort of draped over the furniture. Kate demands security to go find Roald.
Meanwhile, Joe manages to tackle his assailant, who I guess did not consider the possibility that he could be disarmed. But just as Joe is strangling Roald, who shows up but RHYS. “Hello, Joe,” he says and then knocks Joe out. (I’m taking the win on this one. He was in my top three!)
Joe regains consciousness chained up in a dungeon with some spooky dolls lying around because, of course, this castle is equipped with such a place, though Phoebe likely doesn’t know it’s there. Folks, I miss the human aquarium!
While Roald sleeps off his bender, Rhys does the thing that bad guys do where they explain their entire plot: The plan is to pin all the murders on Roald (“He’s a neo-fascist with a knife collection”), and as a finishing touch, Rhys wants Joe to kill Roald. Joe pretends their interests are aligned. Once Rhys leaves, Joe laments to himself that the one guy who seemed like a Good Person™ is actually a monster. Even though Joe thinks Roald deserves to die, he has decided he will not be someone else’s puppet. But Rhys walks in on Joe trying to free himself, which means whatever jig Joe had running where he was pretending to be on Rhys’s team is up.
I feel like Rhys just wants to be Batman, which is very funny to me. He even does the voice when he says: “My way is the only way, and you know it.” Rhys kicks over a lantern and lights the dungeon on fire.
Back at the house, everybody smells smoke and realizes they must get out. Roald regains consciousness (woof, rough wakeup call, buddy), and, in a miraculous turn of events, Joe frees himself from his chains and then bashes open Roald’s chains with a rock. (I’m not a Titanic freak, so two references in one recap is a lot for me, but tell me this scene didn’t make you think of this.) All hope seems lost except for Kate shows up at the last minute to pull them out. Everybody staggers away from the castle as it burns to the ground. R.I.P., Hampsie!
Back in London, as you’d expect, both this fire and Gemma’s death have made the news. Joe hasn’t heard from Rhys since his return, probably because Rhys is too busy formally announcing his candidacy for mayor. (Why doesn’t Joe just … leave London?) Kate pops over to bring Joe some clothes Malcolm never bothered to wear and to say she owes him a pint for the whole thing where he helped her hide a body and also nearly died due to the insanity of her nearest and dearest. Joe decides it would be dangerous for Kate to get too close to him (accurate). She tells him that his past doesn’t scare her, and I write in my notes well, it should!!!!!! She takes his rejection quite poorly.
But Joe has other things on his mind. Like how he has to STOP Rhys. I guess by killing him? Is there another way? Outing him as a serial killer somehow? I am curious to see how this show finds its way out of this corner, but I also feel like in this installment, we are losing the thread … we’ve dropped a lot of what makes You the show that it is, no? Joe’s obsession is just a guy who hates the same people that Joe also hates? What do you all think? Are you still intrigued enough for part two?