The Alienist Episode 4
Will we learn more about our three protagonists backgrounds this week? .The more I learn about them, the more I want to know, especially in regards to Dr. Laszlo Kreizler (Daniel Brühl). Will they get any closer to discovering the killer? Or will he strike again before they get a chance? Let’s dive into The Alienist Episode 4…
Pain and Pleasure
Kreizler arrives at the home a lovely, well dressed woman. She asks if he is not satisfied with her progress, so it’s obvious she is, or was, a patient of his. He tells her he is there as her pupil. A maid brings in a tray and as the camera pans over we see it is a burly man. The woman explains he’s a foreman at the local brewery. That he is use to giving orders, but there he prefers to take them. It occurs to me that this is some kind of BDSM house and she is a Dom. She tells Kreizler she has moved on from torturing helpless creatures. Obviously now it’s men she tortures.
Kreizler tells the woman he needs her insight into someone who enjoys inflicting pain. She tells him the connection between pain and pleasure is far more common than he thinks. Kreizler tells her the man is aroused by stabbing and mutilating. She responds that the mind is the most erotic organ and that is his domain.
The woman explains that a man that defiles women is dominated in his life, and a man who likes to be beaten is a bully. I can’t help but wonder how Kreizler, who is a prominent Alienist does not already know all this. She also tells Kreizler that he is probably aroused by someone for whom his intelligence means nothing. His uncomfortable reaction tells me she is right. She tells the doctor that if the man enjoys inflicting wounds that he has wounds of his own.
Roosevelt’s Bad Press
As Commissioner Roosevelt (Brian Geraghty) arrives at Police Headquarters he is swarmed by reporters. They are shouting questions about the murdered immigrant boys, asking if only the rich are being protected. He is also asked about a rumor that he has interfered with the investigation. Things are not looking good in the public eye for Roosevelt and this is what former Police Chief Thomas Byrnes (Ted Levine) wants. I’m sure it’s Byrnes and his cronies that are leaking this info to the press.
As Roosevelt enters his office he sees a negative Political Cartoon about him in the newspaper. Captain Connor’s (David Wilmot) sly chuckle tells me I’m right about Byrnes and his cronies. Connor then comes to Roosevelt’s office with some evidence he has found. He shows Roosevelt the drawing kit that John Moore (Luke Evans) had dropped at the last murder scene. Connor says it has the initials JSM and he can’t figure out who it could be. He is obviously being sarcastic. I was worried when Moore dropped his kit, I did not suspect Connor would just give it back. Although, he IS letting Roosevelt know in his subtle way that he knows what the Commissioner is doing.
An Important Clue
The Alienist is full of amazing visuals, including incredible camera angles. Some of those great angles are used in this scene. Marcus Isaacson (Douglas Smith) is dangling over the edge of the aquarium building looking at holes in the wall. Along with his twin Lucius Isaacson (Matthew Shear) he discovers these holes go all the way to the ground. While trying to figure out what made the holes Marcus discovers a piton on the ground. So the killer is not magically able to fly after all, he’s a rock climber. I’ll be honest, that possibility never even entered my mind.
Sara Howard (Dakota Fanning) shows up at Kreizler’s house. When Mary (Q’orianka Kilcher) sees that it is Sara at the door she does not answer. I’m beginning to understand her strange looks from previous episodes…she’s jealous! Cyrus (Robert Wisdom) arrives and tells Sara that Kreizler is “off in one of his trances.” What does that mean? Is he meditating? Is he hypnotized? Sara looks as confused as I am about this.