Welcome back to Kiri with Sarah Lancashire which is getting deeper by the minute; I've heard an interesting theory about two of our main characters, let's lookit what pans out!
We're on that fateful day, Alice Warner (Lia Williams) indulgently correcting some out of control Saturday morning cartoon watching by her kiddos Kiri (Felicia Mukasa) and Si (Finn Bennett), in theory presided over by dad Jim Warner (Steve MacKenzie) who appears to be having a blast hidden under a blanket fort. It's a lovely scene of a well-adjusted family whose matriarch clearly doesn't understand about SATURDAY MORNING CARTOONS.
We're back in the present and Alice is laying in bed listening to radio presenters parse her decisions long after they were made.
On the day of the unsupervised visit, Alice followed social worker Miriam Grayson (Sarah Lancashire) as she dropped Kiri off, she even saw Nate Akindele (Paapa Essiedu) drive up and roll down his window but then drove off. That's weird. Surely she knew that Nate was (supposedly) estranged from his family and there he was, staring as his daughter walked up the step.
The Warners sans Kiri have breakfast, but not toast because "we're not doing that." Jim wants to know where "we" came in when it came to his brekkie but Alice explains that she knows best and has been reading too much Today's Park Slope Parent. She's angry and controlling, Si is distant and Jim is once again everyone's punching bag.
I swear, I am trying really hard to like Alice, she seemed like a great mum to Kiri but she's so...
Si storms out and Alice follows him to be swarmed by press as she stands there in her beautiful yellow silk robe.
We're in the woods with Lucy (Cara Theobold) who is waiting for our Miriam, she's honoured to be invited to spy for her! But that's now why Miriam invited her here, it's to chat whilst we stare at the glory of Sarah Lancashire in the full daylight.
SORRY. Where were we?? What was she saying just then?
Ohh, not just a chat but Miriam knows who told about her drinking, it was Lucy and she's like to know why, fanks? Just tell her how it 'appened!
It was by accident, of course, Miriam thinks she was well in control of her drinking and that might, well, might not be exactly the case, showing up at a client's house to throw up and cook sausages at midnight on a school night.
Lucy has an unusual defense for her betrayal, she could have said much worse, she could have talked about Miriam badgering her to not listen to her clients and insist on what she thought was right, she could have told them that and it would have looked much worse. And Miriam does drink, so there's that.
Sorry, Sarah had approximately four minutes of screen time so I had to maximize.
DI Vanessa Mercer (Wunmi Mukaso) and someone else (egg-shaped head? No name in IMDb, looks like a bargain Hercule Poirot?) explain their plan to the Warners, who are having a hard time understanding the need for a re-enactment of Kiri's last day. The police have Nate, right? Ah but there is video evidence exonerating him, so I'm sure they will publish the news of his innocence with as much fury and exuberance as they did when they were looking for him.
Oh wait, I did get a name, knockoff Poirot is Alan (Charles Dale) and he carefully couches his descriptions as paternalistically as possible. Murder investigations are hard! And complicated! The Warners will not get to see the video of Kiri alone apart from her biodad but I can't tell if Alice wants to see it for verification or just to see Kiri.
The re-enactment is for one last push, to get bums in seats and I am grossed out as much as I understand that is necessary.
Alice is visiting Simon's school where the Head Mistress passes on a lot of condolence cards, she was a teacher there. Alice wants to come back to work? Oh no, that's not a good idea.
We're with Alice in the pool, swimming laps but she didn't notice that someone had gotten into the lane with her. I do this! I swim laps! And usually you wait until you make eye contact so people know you're about to push them out of the centre and onto the side, but then I am Canadian and we pretend to be super polite most of the time.
This guy didn't do that, he just about clocked her when they passed, but he's cute and there's something going on because Alice doesn't say "do you want left or right?" she says "no, I don't want to" and then we see her next bouncing on his bathing suit area.
Their post-coital chitchat needs some work, though. "First time I've masturbated to the Channel 4 news" because nothing says schmexy like a woman grieving for her lost child right next to her husband. Jeebus wept. Alice thinks it's funny, though, so whatever.
Alice tells Ben (Steven Cree) about her emotional upheaval, she wants to smash her head in when she's not wallowing in guilt over not stopping Nate that day when she saw him. She followed Miriam because she didn't trust her and what's that about? She wants to keep on with what she's doing, she's coming across well to the public and that matters for finding the truth.
How does that matter? How does a sympathetic family make people find CCTV footage or witnesses faster?
I would like to say I understand Alice The Spin Doctor and what she's focused on during this awful time but I can't even imagine having such a cool and measured response to something so life-altering. Is this narcissism at it's very core? Like Münchhausen By Proxy, lookit me and my sick kiddo? Except with lethal consequences in this case?
Ah well, Ben thinks it's sexy anyway, gross.
Tobi Akindele (Lucian Msamati) and his wife Rochelle (Andi Osho) are at church, being prayed at by Reverend Lipide (Jude Akuwidike) who has more support in mind for Tobi. He brings legal and media support in the form of Ade (Nathaniel Martello-White) who doesn't like how Tobi and his family have been sidelined.
Tobi does not accept.
I will just say: they need to stop making this about politics and make it about finding a murderer of a tiny little girl but Ade's not wrong about how the case has focused disproportionately on the Warner side of things.
For the second time today we getta see Alice in the altogether, she has a lovely back but I don't need to see it again, fanks. Neither does her son need to be in there, Si just stands there and stares at her. Icckkkkkkkk.
Si didn't go to school today, which is why Alice was called in. Si wants to talk about a girl he liked who just sent him a naked photo of herself, all the while Alice is naked and trying to cover up with a too-small towel.
Alice looks extremely uncomfortable but just when we think Si is gone and we can breathe and she can put on clothing he pops back in to confront her about her affair. He followed her, he could have been anyone!
Then he rips her towel off and she doesn't even go full Mommy-voice, but rather looks terrified and small. She calls after him asking to not leave it like this, then runs after him in to the crowd of reporters, finally telling them all off. I do not understand anything about this family. Full stop.
It's time for the re-enactment, Alan is working hard on the geographical specificity but Alice can't stop staring at the actress playing Kiri, who is spookily similar. Everyone follows the little girl.
Alice sits and watches the kids at the playground, she makes a friend in a little girl named Fiona (Isla Johnston) before she's rudely yanked away. Alice starts to cry but is interrupted by some very unwelcome news: Si's gone to see Miriam.
Miriam and Alice square off toe to toe; why not say it to Miriam's face, Alice? So she does. Alice feels Miriam was working a private agenda (we saw that last week! Blue-eyed Jesus, etc), unduly influencing the Warners to allow the Akindeles access to Kiri.
Alice is venomous and vindictive, she hold herself responsible for the decision she feels led to Kiri's death but mostly for Miriam for pushing her towards it.
Si pops out at the end to mock his mum a bit then they hit the road so he can ask all kinds of personal questions about why she married his dad. He thinks she married his dad because of his happy arrival which just goes to prove how much kids think the world revolves around them.
Side note: we're getting an awful lot of Alice this episode, yes? Hm
Alice turns the tables, she'd like to ask some questions now. Where did he go on Kiri's last day? Walked around in full view of CCTV, that kind of thing. Now she'd like to know why Kiri's shirt is in his wastebasket and he says Kiri put it there and I don't understand why that rated a hug.
Weird family is weird, I am booking a holiday away for Jim and I because this is BULLSHIT.
Tobi is knocking down doors at the police station, he wants to know why his son hasn't been released. Ah but he's being charged with abduction, which makes sense to me but not Tobi whatsoever.
Also confused is Alice, who is being served a search warrant by DI Mercer in full view of the scrum of media outside her house. There is evidence that Kiri took a bus home and got off three minutes away from the house and now Alice will have to come down for a videotaped discussion.
You know, there's something about the difference between Tobi and Alice, both have been considered suspects but only one has had the space to complain and make petulant remarks and sarcastic references about being a "prime suspect."
Earlier we saw Alice asking for her job back, we thought the Head Mistress looking like she swallowed a frog sideways had to do with Alice falling apart in class, but now we see it was much more convoluted. The stress illness that had Alice home from work was not technically medically diagnosed, it seems Jim caught her with another man. He had the balls to be angry, even with his history of infidelity and then a massive fight put Alice on edge and she accidentally slapped the shite out of a girl the next day at school. Everything was hushed up but Alice was put on indefinite leave.
Jim gets home from his interview next, his was quite short because he had all that CCTV footage solidifying his alibi. Guess who doesn't have any CCTV footage of all? SI! Which means it can't be him that hurt Kiri because he's just too obvious of a suspect. Booooo
Jim presses Alice, not only does he believe that Simon could be involved in Kiri's disturbance, he's noticed how Simon looks at Alice.
Jim starts shouting and I AM CANCELLING THE VACAY JIM. I no longer think he's a punching bag but I'm worried that Alice is about to be one for real. He's like that friendly brittle guy that is one missed carpool away from snapping. They're both very afraid of their son.
Jim wants to say he did it, it will throw the police off the scent of Simon so Alice can sort him out and oh. Kiri was going to be their Divorce Baby to keep them together. Alice can't resist cutting Jim off at the knees one last time: he wouldn't even be able to fake confess properly, so forget that.
She says goodbye to Simon, is there even a chance disguy wasn't looking at something illegal?
Then Alice slowly and deliberately deletes a particular picture of Si and Kiri and heads off to the police station.
Alice has remembered seeing an odd car (NATE'S) in her back alley, look how helpful she's being, DI Mercer! We're out to a handshake that looks like the beginning of a wrestling match, when people circle each other and try to win with their minds first.
I first have to address the one glaring omission in this episode: SARAH LANCASHIRE. She was barely there! But dreamy when she was, all emotion all the time.
Now onto the show! I've had just enough Alice (who the eff is Alice?) for a series, fank you very much. I don't require all my characters to be likeable, but I do enjoy watching people without grinding my teeth constantly. Jim's in that bag now as well and Si. SI. Si needs help but the kind that comes with shackles and access to only un-sharpened objects.
The other theory I heard involved a possible romantic connection between Miriam and Tobi, it didn't read that way to me at all at first but then I didn't know Tobi liked to take his wobblies for a walk, so. I didn't see any more evidence of that yet, but I have my eyes open just in case.
Only one more episode to wrap up and then I can start mooning over Happy Valley series three that hasn't yet been written or cast or filmed. Until next time!