The latest episode of Sharp Objects, “Cherry,” primarily focuses on the relationship between Camille and Amma. But there is a break in the case of the two murdered girls, and John Keene’s girlfriend Ashley plays a more prominent role. And for the first time in the series, Camille’s sister Marian speaks.
Here is a recap of “Cherry.”
Spoilers ahead, so beware!
We pick up from last week’s episode, when Camille is running through the woods with the search party, trying to locate Amma. She sees a girl in white – her sister, Marian – and she follows her. As she turns a corner, Camille sees another girl in white – this time, it’s Natalie Keene. She follows the vision to the hunting shed and rescues Amma.
Camille wakes up in Detective Willis’ motel room. He asks her if she would like to come back over tonight, but she tells him that she has plans. In another part of town, we see Chief Vickery getting ready for work. And then we see Alan at the Preaker/Crellin home waking up. He is sleeping on a hideaway bed in a guest room.
Adora is awakened by a phone call, and her only response is, “Don’t do a thing until I get there.”
Camille checks in on Amma to see how she is holding up after last night’s ordeal, and Amma is decked out in her “civvies” and skates, ready to meet her friends in town. Camille tells her that she should take it easy and rest, but Amma brushes her off. Then, Amma shows Camille two scratches on her left arm and says, “If I connect these two, I can make a ‘C’ for ‘Camille.'” Needless to say, this infuriates and scares Camille. Amma apologizes, says she was only joking, and thanks her sister for rescuing her the previous night.
In town, Detective Willis runs into Jackie, who is rearranging/checking up on the makeshift memorial that was set up at the location where Natalie Keene’s body was discovered, in an alley. He asks her if she knows anything about Camille’s latest stay at a hospital (which Adora clued him in on). Jackie won’t divulge any information, but she tells him that he’s “getting warmer.” Willis leaves Jackie and calls in to dispatch a request for information on admittance records to local hospitals for a Camille Preaker.
At Crellin Farms, Chief Vickery is overseeing the recovery of a child’s bike from a small irrigation pond. Adora, Willis, and Bob Nash are present. Bob confirms that the bike blonged to his daughter, Ann, when he sees the colorful flowers on the bike seat and walks away inconsolable.
At John and Ashley’s house, Amma and some other girls are tanning by the pool. Amma unmistakeably hits on John, suggesting they have plenty of time alone before Ashley returns home from cheerleading practice. Meanwhile, Camille arrives at the house to continue her interview of Ashley, and she stumbles upon the scene at the pool. She interrupts the one-way flirting to be greeted by Ashley who has suddenly returned.
During the interview, Ashley does not provide any new information worth Camille’s time. Camille starts to gather her things to leave, and Ashley admits that she is not telling her everything she knows, in order to protect John. She tells Camille that she doesn’t want John becoming “too popular,” but she does not elaborate.
Camille notices an old injury on Ashley’s right ear – an old bite mark.
Then, Ashley’s cheerleading outfit sets off a flashback in Camille’s mind. In the memory, Camilly is 18 years old with long hair. She is on the football field with her teammates at practice. Camille kneels down to relax, saying she has a leg cramp. A teammate, Becca, offers to massage her calf, and while she is doing so, she sees a small trail of blood running down Camille’s back thigh. Camille realizes that her teammate sees this, and she runs off the field.
In present time, Willis calls Camille and informs her about Ann’s bike being found on the Crellin property. Camille rushes home and confronts Adora about it, upset that she was not contacted about the break in the case. She asks if the workers on the farm contacted her or the police first. Adora is offended at the implication and tells Camille to stop interviewing her. When Camille goes inside the house, Adora tells Alan, “I believe she’s outstayed her welcome.”
Detective Willis has arrived at a hospital – it’s the same hospital that Camille stayed in before coming to Wind Gap, the same hospital where she shared a room with Alice. He has come under the pretense that he wants to learn the type of person who checks himself or herself into the hospital, to assist with his investigation of the two murders. The head of the hospital tells Willis that, while patients may become aggressive or agitated, the typical patient that they treat is rarely violent and often take out their anger on themselves.
Back home, Camille meets Alan on the front porch, and he tells her that she needs to leave the house because she is making her mother ill. “I know how jealous you’ve always been of other people’s well being,” he says to her. He also tells her that she reminds him of Joya, Adora’s mother, who would watch over the house like a witch. “The only time I ever saw her smile was when you refused to nurse from Adora.”
At this point, a friend of Camille’s arrives to pick her up for a get-together at another friend’s home. The friend shows Camille that she has an unopened bottle of liquor and some ice, and Camille unsurprisingly partakes. As they drive, it is clear that the friend is trying to get Camille drunk.
At the get-together, it becomes clear that the women are Camille’s former cheerleading teammates. They gather each week to watch sappy movies, drink, and cry together. One woman breaks down and admits that she has returned to work. Another woman declares that her husband does not want any more children, because four is enough. An adult Becca (from the cheerleading flashback earlier) approaches Camille and tells her, “This shit happens every week,” and motions for her to escape with her outside.
Eventually, the other women find Camille and Becca, and they all gather around to gossip about the muder investigations. One woman says that she can’t understand how Camille can report on such gruesome details, and another offers that it is because Camille does not have children herself. “I don’t think part of your heart can ever work if you don’t have kids,” says another.
In town, Detective Willis runs into Jackie at the local bar. Jackie is quite drunk, so Willis takes the opportunity to ask her some questions about Camille. He asks her why she was in rehab. He knows she was harming herself, but he wanted to know why. Jackie says she won’t tell him anything, except that Camille became lost when her sister died. When Willis asks her how Marian died, Jackie says that she was a “sickly child.” Willis asks her if there was an autopsy performed, and Jackie replies, “Adora Crellin was not going to let them carve up her little girl, no.”
Becca drives Camille from the get-together back to the local store in town, which is not far from the Preaker/Crellin home. Camille turns to Becca and asks her why she was being so nice to her, even though she and the others were so mean to her in high school. Becca says that she knew Camille was going through a difficult time, with losing her sister and taking it out on herself. She tells Camille that she saw the source of the blood on her thigh that day in high school – it was from cuts, not her period,
Becca leaves Camille at the store, and a few minutes later, Amma and her gang arrive. They’re on their way to a party, and Amma invites her sister. Camille reluctantly agrees to go.
On the way to the party, each person in the car takes some Oxycontin from Amma’s personal stash.
They arrive at the party, and there are about 100 high schoolers there. After a few minutes, John and Ashley arrive and instantly capture everyone’s attention. Partygoers immediately yell at them to leave. Before leaving, however, Ashley sees Camille and asks her how “her” interview is coming. Caimlle tells her that she didn’t provide any newsworthy information worth writing about. “But I’ve already told everyone I’m going to be in it!” Ashley says.
Camille then asks her about the old bite wound on her ear. “Did Natalie do that to you?” Camille asks. “If you want to know about Natalie, you should ask your mom,” Ashley replies. Ashley then leaves the party to shoults of “baby killer!” from the partygoers.
Eventually, Camille and Amma leave the party together on their skates, heavily under the influence of alcohol, Oxycontin, and now Ecstasy. The sisters skate through the deserted town in the middle of the night, and snippets of memories cut in and out of Camille’s vision the entire time: views of Alice in the hospital; skating with Marian as a 15-year-old; the hunting shed in the woods.
They skate by the local diner, where Chief Vickery has just arrived to meet Detective Willis for a meeting. Vickery tells Willis that he will be going back to Kansas City tomorrow, because a worker on the Crellin farm identified John Keene as the one who dumped Ann Nash’s bike in the lagoon.
Amma and Camille have made it back home and are sitting outside, trying to be quiet even though they are both completely stoned and drunk. They begin dancing in the yard, and they hold hands and spin in a circle together. Camille watches Amma turn into Marian, and then into Natalie Keene, and then into Ann Nash. They stop dancing and go upstairs to Camille’s room, as quietly as possible. As Amma starts to fall asleep on Camille’s bed, Camille looks into the mirror and watches Amma turn into Marian again.
Marian tells Camille, “It’s not safe here for you.”
Stay tuned for a recap of the 7th episode of the series, “Falling.” The 7th and 8th episodes of the series are written by the author of Sharp Objects herself, Gillian Flynn, so prepare yourselves for shocking twists and turns!