Hi everyone and welcome back to Annika, one of my very favourite Nicola Walker shows, of which there are many. She’s so funny in this one, well matched with Jamie Sives for dry wit. Rolling into my recap of Annika S2:E04 after the break.
We open in a helicopter with DI Annika Strandhed (Nicola Walker) nervously narrating the history of the Hebridean islands to DS Michael McAndrews (Jamie Sives), which they are hovering over. We knew she had a fear of heights after watching her cross across an elevated scaffold, but I’m trying to figure out why they’re in a whirlybird anyway since they’re part of the Marine Homicide Unit. Not Air Homicide WhatHaveYou.
Michael makes fun of Annika in the way he has since he found out he’s the father of her teenaged daughter Morgan (Sylvie Furneaux). I mean, I guess he always did but it’s gotten decidedly more sour with this particular declaration.
DC Harper Weston (Varada Sethu) takes them to the incident room set up by local police; she’s transferred here to replace DS Tyrone Clarke (Ukweli Roach) who applied and received a promotion to Elsewhere. Michael and I just remembered her as the motorcycle cop helping out on a previous case, Annika didn’t tell him.
I’m glad Annika took that last parachute. Michael’s petty arse can try flying.
One of the things I love about this show is its literary basis. There is always a book or an author or both in the offing, setting the theme for each episode. This one is about George Orwell’s “1984″ which was written on the islands George best identified with fear.
They’re off to the fisheries where a body has been found completely encased in a rectangular block of ice. It’s rather…tidy looking?
DC Blair Ferguson (Katie Leung) is connected via the interwebs to explain that the body was not frozen in the sea, rather it was dumped there in the middle of the night, based on melting something something.
The ice block was dropped off from one of two islands, Michael bets on Islay for size, but Annika’s with Jura for it’s rich literary history.
(I’m with Annika)
A wail draws them outside, Eilidh Das (Sophia McLean) is the dead person’s wife, who hadn’t reported him missing because all signs pointed to him running off with another lady, with a cruel side.
Back in Edinburgh, Blair has not yet resolved her FOMO. She wasn’t allowed to fly to the Hebrides because of her advanced pregnancy so she and Morgan are commiserating.
My bad. Morgan was dating Blair’s younger SISTER. For whatever reason, I remembered there was something romantic around Blair and Morgan but couldn’t remember exactly why and was even more confused when Blair popped up pregnant. I also knew Morgan had a crap girlfriend who broke up with her via text but I hadn’t remembered it was Blair’s sister.
Annika and Michael interview Salty Stewart (Matt Costello), who found the personsicle, but he won’t commit as to which island he thinks it came from. He did draw up a list of people on the water, highlighting Chris Gray (Angela Costello) as unexpected.
He takes the team to see Chris, who denies being on the water and says Salty was delusional from lack of sleep.
I don’t know, I bet he’s underestimated a lot, like when Annika and Michael thought he was sleeping and maybe called him a walrus.
Chris claims poaching as her alibi, except it wasn’t really poaching and anyway, the hotel manager can vouch for her. Before that, Michael gets a call from Harper, who’s at the workplace of the woman the presumed dead person ran off with.
It’s literally an ice factory.
Annika looks for the hotel manager in the conference on site, seeing none other than the fella I was JUST thinking about! Hai Dr. Jake Strathearn (Paul McGann), I was wondering when your sexy face was going to show up!
He and Annika had a situation for awhile, they met when he was providing therapy for Morgan.
Michael absolutely notices the vibe. And that the therapist is talking about Annika as a case study about deception.
Harper checks out the ice factory, where there is a box specifically that could hold a grown male body. The main suspect, the dead person’s mistress Janine, can’t come in for an interview, so sorry.
But wait!!! They’ve all been thinking the dead person is Qaiyum Das (Ryaan Ali) because of his wife’s presumptive identification but hey – he’s very much alive and currently showing Harper around the ice factory.
Back at the hotel, the manager Celeste Muirhead (Jenny Whiffen) confirms that Chris Gray was not on the water this morning as reported by Salty but rather poaching for her kitchen.
Why would Salty not only lie, but specifically direct them toward Chris? Or are the hotel manager and Chris lying?
Something is fishy…
Annika sends Michael away and approaches Dr. OverSharesiePants during cocktail hour.
Look how adorable Annika is around him.
Ohhhhhhhhhhhh look who shared a room! I absolutely understand that, but will Morgan? Hahaha she seems happy to see her mother with Jake again. Just like us.
Okay! The hotel manager and Chris are in cahoots, Chris was definitely on the water that morning and our faith is restored in one such salty walrus.
Harper is a machine, she’s even identified the likely actual victim: Ronan McIntyre who has “YOUR NAME’ tattooed on his arse. He stays at a rental cottage on Jura.
Well well, look who was right all along. Jura with its rich literary history for the win.
Aw I love that Michael notices that Annika is wearing the same clothes as the day before and is happy about it.
Ronan was staying in the rental cottage of Abeni Ogunwe (Adura Onashile); a pregnant artist who is long term friends with the roguish Ronan. Abeni’s partner Oliver Forbes (Grant O’Rourke) thinks Ronan’s just run off with some lady. Apparently the tattoo is just alluring as one would think.
Not to Chris, who punched out a drunken Ronan earlier this week at the hotel. Hm.
Someone has locked our Michael in the bridge of Ronan’s boat rapidly filling with propane gas and it doesn’t look at all like Chris! It looks like Oliver but I can’t be sure. Either way, it’s not great.
Morgan calls Jake to plead her case, she’s been trying to talk her mum into allowing her to a work placement term but Annika does not feel she can trust Morgan yet, after Morgan stole her boat while heartbroken.
Annika talked to Michael about it, how interesting that Morgan has already made Jake her surrogate parent.
The boat blows up, was Michael on there? No, and look, it’s not Oliver after all. Annika knocks him into the water while Harper broaches Chris about her fight with Ronan. Chris did not know Ronan was dead, collapsing on the ground when she hears her….brother is dead.
So Fergus Gordon (Edward M. Corrie) blew up the boat but swears he didn’t kill Ronan, lookit all the red herrings in our little tableau! We’ve got:
– a thunderously angry whiskey distiller going out of business with a penchant for mixing compressed gases with flame
– an irritated sibling determined to correct her brother’s behaviour with the most corporal of punishments
– a not-dead man on the run from his loving wife, shacking up with his ladylove in their chilly ice factory
Look at this shot:
I swear these shows are just travel brochures with moving pictures.
Ah so maybe he did make it back to that cottage after all. Maybe Oliver was the harm after all, him with his pregnant wife, 5 rounds of IBF and a satyr for a tenant accused of impregnating half the island.
Oliver it is.
They find Abeni using a chainsaw on a huge block of ice, she goes into labour almost immediately and Annika is our most unlikely midwife.
Michael and Harper approach Oliver in his boat, Harper in the water and Michael on deck. Somehow Salty ends up in the water as well but Oliver doesn’t get away thanks to Harper’s forethought.
Now Abeni has a baby boy with no dad. And Annika is taking a ride back to the mainland with Jake instead of getting back in a helicopter with Michael. She does allow Morgan to go on the work experience, Michael helped.
Back at home, Annika’s dad Magnus Strandhed (Sven Henriksen) is there and honestly, is this show going to always be all about dads? I ask you.
Until next time, cheers everyone. I love you all.