‘Prodigal Son’ Season 1, Episode 16 Recap: “The Job”

19 Min Read
Image courtesy Fox.

I swear, it’s like the writers know what we wish for each week in some way, and this episode is no different. The opening scene alone at Clairmont while Martin brokers a deal with Malcolm over a statement to the police to keep Jessica out of jail for stabbing him is absolutely brilliant. Read on to find out what else happened this week on Prodigal Son …

Martin has a way with words like he always does, making an agreement with Malcolm for two visits every ten days to keep Jessica out of Bedford Correctional. Even if Jessica did wish the new hospital bed Martin was in would malfunction and crush him, she retains her resolve, barely, for the sake of the situation at hand.  Jessica and Malcolm retreat to Malcolm’s apartment while Jessica has a couple of drinks. She vents that she cannot stand that Martin is still manipulating them. Malcolm agrees, pointing out that Martin is a master manipulator. Jessica retaliates that she is too, and once they have the statement, they can be rid of Martin. Malcolm shies away at the thought of being rid of his serial-killer-psychopathic father, which Jessica notes and tells him they can discuss it later. A toast to good news instead! But neither has any.

Image courtesy Fox.


Jessica asks Malcolm about Eve, and Malcolm tells his mother that Eve never returned the call and maybe needed space. Jessica, being the determined mother she is, calls Eve herself and hands the phone off to her son. Malcolm and Eve talk for a moment and decide on an apology dinner the following night. Finally something to celebrate, for a moment, until Gil calls.

Malcolm meets Gil and the rest of the team at a warehouse for a private auction of high-end watches, the kind that Malcolm would wear every day. The robbers rode in on motorcycles, smashed cases, fired at the ceiling for noise distraction, grabbed what they came for, and sped away. Except they left one thing behind: a dead girl in the back room. Edrisa determines how close to the girl the killer was by standing close to Malcolm, and Malcolm is still blissfully unaware of Edrisa herself. Malcolm profiles that the killer took the girl away from the robbery gang, but why? A loud voice from the warehouse interrupts Malcolm’s profile and he goes out to see an old familiar face, Vijay, from boarding school. Vijay is the underwriter for the insurance company for the warehouse. Dani comes up behind Malcolm at the end of their conversation, and he tells her of their time at boarding school, while Dani teases him about being a “weird loaner kid” and that he and Vijay were kids of “bad dads” due to Vijay’s father’s cocaine smuggling business.

JT calls Malcolm back to the body, asking why the victim still has a $10,000 tennis bracelet on. As Malcolm profiles the kill itself, he notices the smaller details. She was rolled over, the killer wanted to hide her from the fellow thieves, like an addict he craves the endorphin rush, but will they be able to stop?

At the station the team reviews the small bit of video surveillance they were able to find, while Vijay comes by to work with the police. Gil tells him they are more focused on the murder than the watches. Vijay has already been on the case, as this group had bravado, he worked with Interpol for possible leads without any luck. However, he was informed by Interpol of a confirmed rumor: a young American crew pulling jobs in Europe with more established crews, studying the masters. It tracks with Malcolm’s profile too, the first kill may have been unintentional, yet the gateway to thrill killing for this person. Vijay hands over a file of the top 50 American gangs that track, inquiring about the watches. Dani shuts him down, major crimes doesn’t care about the watches. Vijay points out that he’s been monitoring fences, and collectors, people that could buy that amount of stolen goods at the price point in question. Malcolm realizes that’s how they’re going to catch the killer, by tracking and using the watches. Gil agrees to coordinate with Vijay, reluctantly. Vijay is like a teenager again, excited to have the corner table boys, rejects, and bad seeds together, while everyone else leaves the room.

Malcolm visits Martin, sitting in the furthest corner of the room, closing himself off because these visits are actually blackmail. Counting down the final twelve minutes before he is able to leave, Martin asks his son if he wants to spend them not talking about the things that are on his mind and clearly bothering him. At the idea of Martin sharing his thoughts on Medicare for All, Malcolm relaxes a bit, asking his father if he remembers Vijay. Of course Martin does as he remembers feeling relieved that his son had made friends after years of isolation, but Martin also remembers the falling out when Vijay’s father was released from jail. Malcolm still blames himself, believing the problem was him. Martin tries to be a father, telling him that it wasn’t his fault Vijay found new friends. Malcolm realizes the problem was Martin, that his own father created trust issues. Before Malcolm leaves, Martin does question that if Vijay was able to move on, why can’t he?

Gil calls just as Malcolm is leaving. There is an alert from a prowler that a motorcycle group was cruising the diamond district while Dani notes there is an alarm in progress. Meeting up at the site of alarm, the team crashes into the building to the sound of someone yelling to keep their heads down, to not be a hero … when Gil finds the source of the voice, unfortunately it is coming from a stereo in an office. In the next room over, Dani finds another dead girl, similar body type and hair as the first as well, or so we thought she was dead when her eyes opened! Shot straight in the forehead and not only lives, but asks if everyone is okay? This show makes all of us Prodigies jump in the most random places, I swear!

Image courtesy Fox.

Malcolm calls his dad to get information on the surgeon performing the craniotomy on Patti, the latest victim, after Gil had told them that he can’t get into the operating room to ask any questions. Martin is proud of his son, using blackmail to get what he needs in this moment. Bright and Vijay begin questioning Patti in the operating room but she can’t remember his face due to facial blindness. Malcolm assures her that 1 in 50 people have it to some degree, she breathes and remembers the name “Coop”, along with a tattoo of a peacock. Vijay takes this information and runs with it to track a gang from Seattle, all of whom have phoenix tattoos, who branched out from drugs into more sophisticated crimes until Chicago and St. Louis where two other women in their 20’s with curly hair were also murdered recently.

Gil asks Malcolm if Vijay can be trusted, he still wants the watches and could make a side-deal with this Cooper who is the head of the robbery gang. Malcolm isn’t sure he can be trusted after all. Gil, being a good cop, puts a tail on him. Malcolm decides to ask him about school and why they had a falling out, Vijay tells him that he tried; he invited Malcolm to parties, tried introducing him to new people but he was intense. Malcolm was always silently judging people, even back then. Malcolm agrees that he has rather profound trust issues and that he is having trouble trusting him. He brings up Cooper, there’s $20 million in watches to unload and Vijay’s job is to recover them, whatever it takes. Malcolm warns him that he would be aiding and abetting known criminals, putting himself in danger (something Malcolm is all too familiar with.) Vijay decides to walk away from Malcolm, denying any coordination with Cooper.

That evening, we are back at Malcolm’s apartment with him and Eve. He jokes about ordering scallops because he burnt the ones he tried to cook, and that he hid all the steak knives. Eve is less than pleased, after he apologizes for being nervous, she pushes him to talk about him, about that night he attacked her in his sleep. Malcolm comes clean that he was having a nightmare about the girl in the box, and that he tried to save her when he was a kid, he thinks, he isn’t sure. Eve tries to comfort him but Gil calls to inform that Vijay slipped his tail, asking if Malcolm might know where a meet might take place. Malcolm sends him a pin to meet at the docks where Vijay’s dad used to smuggle cocaine.

Malcolm remembered the stories Vijay used to tell him and tracks him there, stories like how his father ran over a dealer in his Bentley and Vijay was in the back. After Malcolm sits himself in Vijay’s car, he calls his friend out for lying to him and making the side deal after all. Vijay tries to explain, it’s his job, to make deals with bad people. Malcolm tries to tell him these are more than just bad people, this is a thrill killer and that Gil is on his way. Another vehicle pulls in at that time and Gil isn’t going to make it. Malcolm goes with Vijay anyway knowing that if he slips up, he’s dead. Yet again, Malcolm, always finding some way to possibly die, aren’t we?

Cooper greets the two and is surprised there is a second person at all as this was not a plus-one situation. Vijay passes Malcolm off as the appraiser, and if they want to make money tonight, he goes with. With hoods placed over their heads and both transported to an unknown warehouse, Cooper gives Bright twenty minutes to look over the watches while Vijay tells his friend he is going to make a deal and they’ll both walk out of there. Malcolm has a plan, but Vijay has to haggle with Cooper a bit first. Get to know each one of the gang a bit, figure out which one of them is the thrill killer.

Back at Jessica’s, Martin calls the old phone line to ask why Malcolm isn’t answering the phone. He would hate to tell the police the wrong story … Jessica is aghast at the thought that Martin has feelings to begin with, psychopaths don’t have feelings, Martin tells her they do, but they can turn them off. After some bickering, Jessica knows as little as Martin regarding their son’s whereabouts. Martin realizes this is what parenting is, worrying about your children, wondering if they are okay or in trouble, and expresses that its nice to have someone to talk to. Jessica tells him ever so politely, “you’re right, I should call Gil”, thereby hanging up on Martin, turning that dagger just a bit deeper in that heart of his.

Image courtesy Fox.


While Malcolm accesses the watches, he profiles each of the robbers to see who the killer is. He connects with the girl, Sheila, the most, which Cooper’s brother does not like. The last one, Grant, is suspicious of Malcolm, calls him out for being a cop, and knocks him flat just as Vijay and Cooper walk back into the room. Both Malcolm and Vijay deny the claim, but Cooper still begins beating Vijay senseless, because how much pain will get them the truth? Malcolm comes clean that he is not a cop, rather a profiler with the NYPD. While the gang decides whether or not to kill them both, Malcolm begs for Vijay to be left out of it. Orders are given to take Vijay back but he doesn’t want to leave without Malcolm, to which Malcolm protests. He tells Vijay to go because he never could trust him, he’s just like his dad, and to get in his Bentley, and go. Vijay hurtfully replies he drives a vintage Porsche as he is dragged away. Malcolm tells him “that will work too, just go!”

Back at the docks, Gil and Dani watch Vijay be dropped off with the watches, quickly knocking Alex unconscious, and speed away in his Porsche. Gil and Dani are very confused but follow him anyway. A tied up Malcolm realizes he and Cooper are trying to figure out the same thing, which one of them is the killer? His brother he trusts, Pete points out they’ve been a team for five years, which is maybe too long. Malcolm asks Sheila if she has curly hair and she takes off a beanie to reveal she does, in fact, have curly brunette hair.

Malcolm profiled Pete to be in love with Sheila, and she kept him along for the ride. All the victims looked just like her, proxies, and one day he is going to tire of the stand-in and go for the real thing. The four of them pull guns on each other, Cooper exclaimed that they are still a team and they don’t have to kill each other. But as Malcolm so brilliantly has already pointed out, one of them does. Shots are fired and Malcolm is greeted by Martin in his state of unconsciousness, telling his son he is a killer, and psycho, taking out four criminals in one fell swoop. He loaded their minds with fear and anger, that Malcolm doesn’t need friends, he’s too much like his father. Malcolm wakes up, as do Pete and Sheila, but all Malcolm wants to know is why he started killing the girls to begin with. Pete had saved his share of every job to build a life outside of robberies with her, but she was never going to leave with him … Just then, Vijay comes speeding in with his Porsche to run Pete over, literally. He had picked up on the hints after all when Malcolm told him to leave.

Gil and Dani are not far behind, as they walk in to find that Bright is okay, Pete was the killer and is dead, and as a team, Vijay and Malcolm not only survived but the bad seeds saved the day. Eve stops by Jessica’s home to thank her for reconnecting her with Malcolm, and that she knows about the girl in the box. She proposes that they start strategizing together to find out who she was while Jessica walks off and leaves Eve alone. Eve finds her way down to the Whitley’s basement and uncovers the trunk itself. Pulling it out from under the dusty sheet, she opens it, carefully tracing certain areas of the lining while sobbing, then deciding to get in the box herself and closing the lid!

Find out what happens with not only the girl in the box, but Eve as well on the next Prodigal Son, Mondays at 9 p.m. ET on Fox.

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By Kristin
First a fan of One Tree Hill, then Supernatural and many others. I work in restaurant management full time and enjoy photography as a hobby and part time when I can. I love most kinds of music, and really love Swain (and Rob). I’m basically a 80's/90’s kid that never really left that era. I can be found on twitter at @1WaywardSister or @42photostudio
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