Stan’s The Gloaming
1×02: “Hell’s Black Grammar”
Directed by Michael Rymer
Written by Victoria Madden
* For a recap & review of the premiere, “The Dying of the Light” – click here
* For a recap & review of the next episode, “The Casting of the Bones” – click here
There’s something witchy about Grace Cochran. She watches as the landscape nearby her house is sprayed with what’s likely a pesticide. Insects buzz through the air. Her tree outside has a bunch of empty bottles hanging from it like eerie decorations. Do they serve a larger purpose? Are they like a traditional bottle tree, used to capture evil spirits and prevent them from entering the home?
Molly McGee just recently found Daisy Hart hanged in the shed behind her house. She’s ignoring Inspector Lewis Grimshaw’s suggestion of taking a day off. She tells Lewis Alex O’Connell shouldn’t work on this case, suggesting it “might trigger bad memories.” She doesn’t believe it’s a coincidence Jenny McGinty’s ID turned up at a murder scene.
Poor Alex has all those memories kicking around in his head constantly. He found an earring on the deck during the night— the same kind Jenny wore the day she was killed. He tries to convince himself it belongs to someone else, even if he knows the truth deep down. Elsewhere, Freddie’s likewise trying to convince himself he isn’t seeing shadowy people on the periphery of his vision. Are these the ‘Gloamers’ referred to in the opening quote from Keaton Henson? If so, WHO are they really?
Molly speaks to Daisy’s foster parents. They naturally want answers, assuming their daughter’s suicide was all due to drugs. Molly says Daisy came to see her, though Lewis twists it into a lie. She doesn’t get such a hot reception from the foster mom, whose dagger eyes all but pierce her. She’s met the couple before, they’re regular foster parents. Doesn’t mean they’re good ones.
Senior Constable Oscar Wolfe is sniffing around the wharf, looking into the piece of wood found in dead Dorothy’s hand. He sees Freddie’s vehicle there and it has bald tires. Out in the woods, Molly and Alex, along with a forensics team, check Dorothy’s house. There are many interesting things, such as a money stash. Might’ve been the old woman was going someplace. Could mean potential motive.
William Fian gives a speech to the football club. He goes on about character and pride. Simultaneously, Grace is with a bunch of young women in the woods. The girls are standing barefoot in the freezing stream praying. Quite the juxtaposition of gender there in Hobart. Not hard to tell Grace is up to something occult-ish.
The cops are having trouble figuring out Dorothy’s “true identity.” Only one person existed with that name and she died in the 1920s at three years old. They know the old woman worked for Millstock Enterprises. Constables Freya and Oscar check out the old building where she worked. On the road, Alex runs into Gareth McAvaney, an old face from his past. Molly watches them interact, asking her cop colleague about how they know each other. Backstory comes out: Gareth used to date one of Molly’s friends who’s now dead. Our cop suspects her friend’s death is related to McAvaney.
At The Door of Salvation, Molly speaks with Grace. She has to tell the woman about Daisy’s suicide. She wants to know if Grace might know any reason why Daisy would’ve been so upset. The older woman’s more interested in the etymology of Alex’s family name. Her overall energy here is… odd. Also, she now has an item belonging to Alex after he leaves his gloves accidentally.
Good for witchcraft, having someone’s belongings. Just saying.
Freddie’s just now finding out about Daisy committing suicide. He’s already in a bad way. He gets questioned by Daisy’s foster mother, refusing to believe she’s dead. He makes claims that he knows what they’re up to and threatens to kill them if they don’t let him see Daisy. Are the foster parents really up to no good? Does what Freddie and Daisy did have some connection to it?
Alex and Molly visit Jenny’s mother. They ask Mrs. McGinty if she knew the dead woman, Dorothy. She didn’t, then she’s told about the ID. They want to know if she has any idea why the ID would’ve been in Dorothy’s possession. Mrs. McGinty believes the ID would’ve been in her daughter’s backpack the day she died. She hasn’t seen the backpack since the murder. Things change suddenly when she sees a picture of Dorothy. Perhaps she knew ‘Dorothy’ by another name.
Again, in a series like The Gloaming there’ll be more than a few red herrings, too.
At the station, Alex goes through the evidence from Jenny’s case. It takes him right back to that day, vividly recalling all the details leading up to her brutal killing. He does see Lewis was part of the team investigating the murder. Lewis was “straight out of the academy” at the time. Alex is mad Inspector Grimshaw didn’t originally tell him about the ID card. He insists “ulterior motive” brought him back to Hobart. Lewis only thought Alex would somehow piece things together because he was close to it all. Now he figures it’s time for O’Connell to leave. Proper time for Lily to show up, along with Toby. It surprises Molly as much as it surprises Alex to see her family.
Molly takes Lily out for Chinese food. She can’t have her daughter over during the weekend because of Daisy killing herself at the house. Lily wants to know why the girl would do it there. She mentions Freddie hanging around with Daisy, which interests her mother, who warns to stay away from him. Molly doesn’t like to hear her daughter talking about sex, either. Little does she know what Lily is up to online.
Later, Lily finds Freddie in a tunnel. He’s screaming at the Gloamers, those shadow people. They’re not really there. She can’t see them, even if he can, and it makes him look off his head. She tells Freddie about Daisy killing herself in her mother’s shed.
At the same time, Molly is investigating. She looks in her shed and finds a piece of chalk Daisy used to write with, likewise locating a T-like shape drawn in blue. A little later, she and Alex get a call from the morgue. There may be a connection between Daisy’s suicide and Dorothy’s murder.
Quite the followup. Victoria Madden’s wonderfully Gothic, eerie series is taking off. Many places to go from here. Can’t wait to see what new grim discoveries come in the following episode. Because you know they’ll keep coming.
“The Casting of the Bones” is next.