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HBO Max Mare of Easttown (HBO) (1 Viewer)

Cameron Yee

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Well, episode three showed up in my account just after 7PM PT, which is what I expected to happen last week. but did not. So I know what I'm doing tonight.
 

Adam Lenhardt

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This episode definitely peeled back more layers on Mare's professional life. She's a really sharp and astute detective catching things her colleague from the county sheriff's department missed and making connections he didn't see.

At the same time, she's a bit crooked on the margins. We see it when she deletes the security camera footage of the neighbor vandalizing Betty Carroll's shed because Betty Carroll irritates the shit of her. More egregiously, we see it when she plants evidence in her grandson's mother's car in an attempt to retain custody of him. The police chief cuts her more slack than she probably deserves, finding a framing that allows a fireable offense into something that merits administrative leave instead.

With regard to DJ's paternity: My guess is that Mare's ex isn't the father, but neither is Dylan.

The deacon throwing Erin's bike over the side of the bridge is certainly suspicious, but it's so suspicious that I think it might be a bit of a red herring.

The medical examiner's conclusion that Erin was not sexually assaulted on the night of her death also changes things. And the public beatdown by Brianna Delrasso in the hours immediately preceding Erin's death make it impossible to determine whether she was physically assaulted by her murderer. It seems like the motive has to be either:
  1. personal: someone she knows who had a reason to want her dead;
  2. situational: she was in the wrong place at the wrong time and witnessed something she shouldn't have; or
  3. financial: In the premiere, Erin needed to come up with a lot of money so that DJ could get tubes in his ears. It was clear that Dylan was not going to pay for the surgery without a protracted court battle. If she turned to some more desperate method of obtaining the cash, and the situation went south, that could explain her murder.
Regardless, whoever it was likely knew that she had been at the part in the woods. Otherwise, he (or she) wouldn't have known to dump her body there.
 

Cameron Yee

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I crack up every time I see Mare's mother playing Fruit Ninja.

I'm guessing the deacon didn't do it (too simple, too easy), but he knows having Erin's bike looks bad along with whatever resulted in his transfer. He is sufficiently creepy though.

I was not expecting Mare to do what she did with those drugs. I was clueless about what she was thinking about doing with them in the first place, so when it was revealed, it was just like, "Oh man, that was really dumb."
 
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Adam Lenhardt

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The thing I really liked about this episode was the small moments of kindness among really bleak situations and really bleak lives:
  • Mare's friend Lori on the bench with her at the beginning of the episode, being warm and kind to Mare even though she's self-sabotaging at every opportunity.
  • Dawn not ratting out Freddie to Beth because she knows that Beth is already struggling with the burden of having an addict for a brother and doesn't need anything added to her pile.
  • DJ ready to smother the son he never wanted and just learned isn't even his, but ultimately rocking him to sleep instead.
  • Carrie bringing Drew back to Mare's house even though Mare had just tried to plant drugs on her, because she knew it was what was best for Drew. And then, rather than the antagonism that has defined their relationship since the beginning, and in sharp contrast to the vile things she said the week before, told it to Mare straight. And Mare, to her credit, could see that Carrie meant it.
Mare's memory of catching Kevin stealing from her purse was very instructive. We knew he had mental health issues, and we knew Carrie was an addict, but I don't know that we knew that Kevin was this serious of an addict. His problems with Mare might have had less to do with her being a terrible mother, and more to do with her being unwilling to sanction and bankroll his drug habit. Even Siobhan, when she was talking about Kevin to her new crush, was pretty equiviqol about him; she recalled how close she was to him, but she also recalled how impenetrable he could be at other times. Nor did she lay the blame all on her mother; she views the collapse of their family in the aftermath of Kevin's suicide as a collective failing.

For whatever reason, I have a really good ear for voices. So I knew right from the first ransom phone call that Freddie was the one behind the phone calls. What I did not anticipate was Dawn Bailey ultimately opting not to steal from her employer, and instead using the cut up missing person posters to fake the cash. I don't know that I would have been willing to take that kind of risk with regard to my child's life, but I'm sure she was just thinking logically: The odds were overwhelming that it was a scam, and if she got fired from her convenience store job, it would making juggling the costs of her cancer treatment and the costs of raising her her granddaughter Kenzie impossible.

The whole sequence with Mare's mom getting caught sneaking her forbidden ice cream, letting Siobhan's ex Becca in, Siobhan deciding spur of the moment to invite her knew college-age fling inside, Becca catching Siobhan with said new college-age fling, giving Mare's mom a concussion on the way out was just a great bit of screwball comedy. Given how somber this show is in most areas, it was a badly needed moment of levity.

I'm guessing the deacon didn't do it (too simple, too easy), but he knows having Erin's bike looks bad along with whatever resulted in his transfer. He is sufficiently creepy though.
They furthered that red herring this week, since the guy who attacked Missy Sayers was wearing a black shirt. But the degree of foreshadowing has left me more convinced than ever that he is not the perpetrator.

Given that (MAJOR episode four spoiler) Katie Bailey was revealed to still be alive in a Room-type situation, and given that she knows all of the players involved through her mother, it seems likely that we're going to learn who is behind, at minimum, the kidnappings of Katie and Missy sooner rather than later. That's not necessarily a bad thing; it takes away from the whodunnit element, but sometimes it can be more suspenseful when the audience knows something that the characters don't know.

Maybe he really did molest that girl in his previous parish, and maybe he didn't. Either way, I'm guessing that previous allegation is the reason he ditched the bike; he didn't believe that the police would believe whatever actually did happen.

I was not expecting Mare to do what she did with those drugs. I was clueless about what she was thinking about doing with them in the first place, so when it was revealed, it was just like, "Oh man, that was really dumb."
The fallout this week was interesting; on one hand, she owned up to it with her mother and her daughter immediately. On the other hand, she deceived Zabel to follow up on a promising lead herself, so there isn't really any indication that she's learned her lesson from the suspension. Presumably she wanted to read the journals to find out Erin's relationship with Frank. But in so doing, she might have compromised their best lead in a year on Katie Bailey -- given that the date on the heart necklace is presumably Katie's daughter's birthdate.
 

Greg.K

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Yeah, and still not sure what to make of Richard, either. He has to be involved in something.
 

Greg.K

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I enhanced what we can see of the van guy a bit. Who is it?
 

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Adam Lenhardt

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That was a heck on an hour of television. The final act was as harrowing as the final act of Silence of the Lambs.

Lots of wonderful small details, too. Particularly the way Mare is engaging with therapy, and the impact it's having in terms of being less emotionally closed off.

I also really liked the scenes with Mare and the prostitutes. Those scenes were so carefully executed; you really understand the relationship Mare had with her informant, and you see the complete lack of judgment from Mare. These are women making a living to support themselves, just like she is. And it's a mutual respect that led to a lead that blew the case wide open.

It also disentangled the two mysteries, so with the remaining two episodes we can focus in on the mystery that remains without all of the clutter from the other horrific crime in Easttown.

Poor Zabel. :(
That was one of the most shocking television deaths I've experienced in quite some time. Not even so much the "who" as the "how". It was incredibly sudden, the way that shootings in real life often are but shootings in TV and film seldom are.
 

Joe Wong

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Fantastic episode... adding more layers and questions but also resolving one major one.

Like Adam, the ending gave me Silence of the Lambs vibes.
 

Cameron Yee

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Yup, also caught the Silence of the Lambs vibes.

I don't know if the shenanigans with Dylan is another red herring, but it definitely doesn't look good.
 

Adam Lenhardt

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I don't know if the shenanigans with Dylan is another red herring, but it definitely doesn't look good.
My guess is that Erin was involved in something shady with Dylan that Dylan doesn't want the police to find out about, probably related to the necklace Mare found in the dresser, but Dylan isn't actually the killer.

My money is still on one of Erin's uncles, either the one Erin lived with for a few month or the one who's married to Mare's best friend.[/SPOILER]
 

Cameron Yee

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Yeah, the shifty uncle was a little too nervous for his own good. :D He's obviously hiding something unseemly, even if he's not the killer.
 

Joe Wong

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I may have missed something, but why is Erin's best friend helping Dylan?

And the shifty uncle obviously didn't want to reveal anything more since he decided to leave the get-together just after he opened a new bottle of beer!
 

Cameron Yee

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I may have missed something, but why is Erin's best friend helping Dylan?

And the shifty uncle obviously didn't want to reveal anything more since he decided to leave the get-together just after he opened a new bottle of beer!
You didn't miss anything. That's the mystery to be revealed.
 

Greg.K

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Zabel's death was shocking in its suddenness, but I kind of thought he was doomed after he kissed Mare.
 
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Joe Wong

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Just finished Ep 6. Setting up for a knockout finale next week.

My wife and I are thinking the twist is that Billy's brother John is the killer, and Billy was covered in blood to help clean up.

The scene where Billy confesses to John "I killed Erin" is an unreliable narrator-type scene. We don't know what had been discussed prior. It could be John coercing Billy to take the fall.

That photo at the end holds the key, of course.
 

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