Prodigal Son Episode 18: Scheherazade
I was quite convinced I knew where the writers of Prodigal Son were going with this season. I can safely say after tonight’s episode, “Scheherazade”, I have absolutely no idea. If you’re anything like me, you may be picking your jaw off the floor. Because of the pandemic currently sweeping the world, Prodigal Son only has two more episodes left in the season. Honestly, I have no idea what to expect, but I sure have a lot to say. Let’s dive in!
“You are a void.”
Before we get to the case, let’s talk about Eve and Malcolm. While I am definitely team Eve can jump off a cliff (okay, maybe that’s a bit severe), I was quite shocked and pleased by how she handled herself in front of the man she believes killed her sister. Malcolm and Eve visit Martin to get answers about Sophie, also known to fans as “The Girl in the Box.” After swiftly hitting Martin, Eve goes on a verbal assault as well, demanding answers. Martin is what Malcolm describes as “rattled,” and as they exit, his words are venom-like and cruel. He tells them to leave this alone.
My thought was that Malcolm was somehow involved in her death, and he was trying to protect his son. Man, I could not be more wrong. Now, let’s get to that case…
The Case: Dance Til You Drop (Literally)
Jessica Whitly is at a fancy party, angry that Malcolm has stood her up. She’s in a verbal disagreement with another party-goer who seems to want to torment her over the deaths involving Martin. Jessica makes a hilarious comment about an admissions scandal (excellently placed, PS writers), and is saved by the charming host of the party, Nicholas Sendacote. Nicholas is an old friend of Jessica’s and does not judge his friends by what others might do. He and Jessica catch up. The party is a fundraiser of sorts, where those in attendance can help raise money for the arts. He and Jessica observe two well-known ballet dancers, Javier and Fiona, as they complete the title card of our episode.
However, something goes seriously wrong. As Fiona is lifted into the air, Javier seems to freeze. He coughs, blood spraying out of his mouth, and he collapses to the ground, dead almost instantly—nothing like a death to liven up a party.
Malcolm arrives, much to his mother’s disdain (he can show up for a murder, but not her, of course), and Edrisa is all over this case. She also wanted to meet Mrs. Whitly, but Jessica is not paying her any mind. Edrisa says our victim, Javier Suarez, has been poisoned and has bled out from every surface of his body. As they learn more throughout the episode, Edrisa finds that Javier takes injections of cortisol, and the poison, likely capsaicin mixed into the injections.
Malcolm’s profile is clear. This is someone who seeks no pleasure for their murders, keeps their distance, and kills for utility. He adds this person maintains a comfy lifestyle and may wait years between kills.
The suspects pile up quickly. Is it Fiona? What about Suzie? In the theatre, Malcolm tries to get more information from some of the female dancers, while Dani and JT interview Fiona’s old partner, Joseph, who is out on injury and seems jealous (and a bigot) regarding Javier. He denies any involvement in the murder and says that Javier liked to sleep around, and the women involved are brutal.
Things Get Messy (Literally)
As they interview him, one of the dancers puts her contacts in and suddenly falls to the ground, screaming in agony. Malcolm quickly realizes her contact solution was laced with pepper spray and is quite well-knowledged for how to treat it. After making sure the dancer would be okay, he and Gil line up all the dancers and try to profile them into coming forward. Joseph says that none of them ever would, because of the power this person has, and anyone who wanted to speak up would have their career ruined.
However, Gil and the others found other dangerous setups at the theatre, including glass in shoes and laxatives in drinks. Someone wants to hurt others. Joseph hints at Fiona, and they return to her, trying to get more information from her. She admits she and Javier were romantically involved, but something changed. This leads them to why Javier fled from Cuba and why Nicholas (our party host) helped him escape.
Past Mistakes and Here and Now
Nicholas denies any involvement with his murder. In an interesting change of events, Jessica is there when they question him as they were having lunch. Cue a jealous Gil! I kind of like it, I can’t lie. Nicholas seems shady, but I assume for more financial reasons. Regardless, his story leads them to a man named Castio in Cuba who killed six dancers in a company that Javier was involved in.
Malcolm realizes that Castio, previously thought dead, is alive, and Javier must have seen him and wanted to flee. It was too late by this time, Castio had already poisoned him. At the theatre, Malcolm and Gil realize that he’s there and narrowly escapes several deaths as they play cat and mouse with the fugitive. In another impressive talk down of a hostage situation, Castio is taken into custody, and no one else dies.
But, if you think this is all over, you’re mistaken. Here comes the plot twist. MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD. DO NOT READ IF YOU ARE NOT CAUGHT UP.
Its All Connected
Martin, during this episode, calls Jessica to complain about Eve. He does not like her and wants Malcolm not to see her. The reasoning of this seems very strange. Jessica, unimpressed, teases him on the phone and says she is happy about her feature in the paper with Nicholas. Confused, we see Martin look at the paper and lay down on the bed, disturbed. At the time, I assumed he was just pouting, but I realize now why this freaked him out. We see Martin flashback to his time with Sophie, and it seems like he killed her.
However, when Malcolm and Eve come back, hopeful that their game from earlier in the week convinced his father to talk, Martin has a story no one expects. He swears he did not kill Sophie, and instead, she convinced him to let her go. I did not expect this (was Malcolm picturing someone else in that box? Or was his subconscious trying to lead him to somewhere else?), and yet, this was not even the biggest plot twist. Eve, still unconvinced because this means her sister is alive and has never come found her, wants more information. Martin says she told him a story he could not give up.
He does not tell them of the story, at least not in detail. It is only after Malcolm and Eve leave that we see the end of his flashback. Sophie tells Martin about a very dangerous man, more dangerous than him as the Surgeon. This man is Nicholas Sendacote, and he is responsible for a lot of terrible acts. SAY WHAT. I TOLD YOU, FULL CIRCLE. Man, Jessica has a TYPE.
I’m still reeling from this episode, and I have no idea how they’re going to wrap this up in two episodes. I smell a MAJOR cliffhanger coming, and at this moment (I even waited an hour or so to gather my thoughts before writing this), I have no idea where this might go. Who the heck is Nicholas really, and how close is he truly to the Whitly family? And why did this story so convince Martin, and how does he benefit? Is everyone in danger? Martin seems convinced. I know we lose two episodes because of this pandemic, but I am excited to see where this goes. I honestly do not have a clue, and I think that’s telling of how well the writers did this.
There are three weeks until the next episode of Prodigal Son. Be sure to watch the final two episodes of season one, Mondays at 9 pm eastern on FOX.