The monsters of the world truly come to light this week in Prodigal Son. While we are consistently surprised by this show and the psychological back-flips it makes us do each week, it never ceases to amaze how well everything flows together. This week is no different – read on to find out what happened on this week’s brilliant (as always) episode.
We open the week reminded that Eve left Malcolm in his apartment to go search for her sister, Sophie, who turned out to be the infamous girl in the box. While Malcolm stews over his coffee at his mother’s house for breakfast, Ainsley walks in … and so does Nicholas Endicott, who appears to have spent the night with Jessica. Nicholas blames his appearance at family breakfast to Jessica’s martini skills the previous evening. Nicholas bolts out the door, while Malcolm is slightly impressed in his mother. Ainsley researched Endicott, finding out that he and their father used to work together, and she caught him checking her out while he was leaving (ick.)
Ainsley turns the conversation to Malcolm, asking about Eve and finding out they broke up about two weeks prior … by voicemail. Malcolm’s phone dings: it’s an alert from Gil for an emergency at the precinct just before Jessica is to join for breakfast. While he is racing out the door, Ainsley is begging him not to leave her there alone for breakfast.
Malcolm walks into somber looks from others in the police station, but when he goes into Gil’s office, he finds out what is really wrong. Eve is dead! Suicide. She was found that morning in the Hudson River and Edrisa is doing the autopsy. Malcolm rushes out of Gil’s office to see Edrisa immediately to confirm it’s true. Edrisa is giving her rundown of the autopsy as Malcolm interrupts, but she doesn’t notice his nuances immediately. Edrisa tells Malcolm she was just a “floater” they pulled out of the river. After Malcolm confirms Eve’s death for himself, he lets Edrisa know her name was Eve Blanchard. Finding out that Eve had been dead for approximately two weeks, he realizes she never made it out of town. This means she was murdered and did not commit suicide.
The team is in Gil’s office next, with Malcolm fighting for this as a case. Gil points out that Eve had a dark past, was depressed, and medicated – all of which also describe Malcolm. However, Eve had motivation to survive: she had just found out her sister was alive after all. Malcolm also knows that Gil is going to say that he is too close to this, that it’s too personal, and he’s right, but Malcolm is determined not to give up and he will not be benched this time. Gil thinks for a moment, leaning away from the situation, and tells Malcolm to dig in and do what he has to do, on one condition: someone has to tell Jessica.
We progress to Jessica’s house with Malcolm walking into Nicholas comforting his mother, telling her that she is suffering just as much as Malcolm is but she has to make space for her own grief. Nicholas passes on condolences and insists on leaving as it is a time for family, kissing Jessica on his way out. Malcolm asks his mother if Nicholas was with her when she got the call about Eve. After confirming that he was, and that Nicholas is gone, he tells his mother that Eve was actually murdered. Believing that Martin had warned Malcolm of something like this happening to Eve, he thinks maybe he knows who the killer might be. Jessica decides to have the car pulled around and the two of them are going to go visit Martin Whitly himself. As Jessica says, if you grab him where it counts, he’ll squeal like a pig. Don’t ever bet against your own mother, especially when she is Jessica Whitly. When Jessica and Malcolm walk into Martin’s cell however, they find Ainsley already there. Martin declares it’s a family reunion!
Martin is far too happy to have his entire family there to see him, as he requests snacks be delivered by his new guard, Eddie, making note of his existing hearing problem. Ainsley is there because she found information on Sophie Sanders, the girl in the box, discovering she worked for Endicott. Jessica is appalled at the idea that Nicholas is involved in any way, but Malcolm realizes that Martin’s story about making a deal with Sophie is true. Ainsley pieced together that Endicott is the reason their father received the plea deal he did. Coincidence? Likely not. Ainsley asks why the two of them are there, which is when it comes out that Eve was murdered. Martin tries to offer condolences but it falls on deaf ears. They want to know why he wanted her to stop searching for her sister. Martin doesn’t want to disclose that information in front of Jessica but focus on family instead. Jessica however says they are not family, they are a group of people tragically bound to him by blood. Martin better speak up or there will not be any more family reunions. Ainsley and Malcolm both nod in agreement.
The kids are right about Nicholas! Sophie told Martin, “you can never tell him no, it’s Endicott’s one rule.” He plucked Sophie from the street, gave her a job, and built his empire on cruelty. He saved his truly despicable requests for Sophie, until one day she realized that it takes a special kind of monster to turn someone else into one. Jessica insists that Martin is lying, but Malcolm confirms he is not, as Endicott is a clinical narcissist. However, the one highlight is Nicholas would not have killed Eve himself: to a man like Endicott, murder is just another business transaction. Malcolm is determined to find this contract killer and have them flip on Endicott, while Martin protests that will destroy all of them. Jessica quips that was a “lowlight,” however Martin discerns that she slept with Endicott and it’s a good things she never says no. Jessica scoffs and storms off.
At the precinct, Edrisa informs the team that Eve’s cause of death was officially drowning, but it wasn’t a suicide. She also got a call from the commissioner’s office wondering about the determination, which would be Endicott at work. Through science it was found that Eve was in fact drowned, then thrown off the bridge. While Endicott’s profile is straightforward, it is unknown how far his reach into the NYPD is. The second profile is Malcolm’s blind spot. He is unable to profile someone who is an assassin. Gil steps in: he might know a guy …
The two of them pay a visit to Cirro in an old bar. Gil needs information on a pro but Cirro says why bother, they’ll never catch them just like Gil never caught him. The five families must have been sad to see someone like him go. Cirro points out that Malcolm and his nice coat are in the wrong borough. Implying that he is FBI, Malcolm tells Cirro that the field office is a busy place and they’re always happy to put his name back into the hopper, or he can tell Gil the info they need. What they need to know is who has been working New York. It’s someone by the name of “The Nightingale,” and the way to draw her out is to find her next target.
Just as Malcolm, JT, and Dani find The Nightingale’s next target, Conrad Hulce, Malcolm decides to really go rogue, stabbing Conrad in the middle of Grand Central Station! People are screaming and running out of the station, but one person does remain calm as Malcolm predicted. He also tells a bloodied Conrad to fall to the ground, that he’s going to save his life. But he just got stabbed, twice? Just then we see it was actually a ketchup bottle that is acting as the blood. Nice trick, Malcolm. In the middle of the commotion, they spot a woman who is fairly still with a shopping bag, which happens to have a gun in it! Dani goes after her into the New York street into a one-on-one fight. The Nightingale asks if Dani is CIA, but no, NYPD.
Once in custody Malcolm beings to question The Nightingale about why she murdered Eve. He tries to profile her, picking up on her accent from Warsaw. “You can’t shrink me,” she tells him, except Malcolm Bright can read everybody whether you did it or not. Her one phone-call was to the CIA to accept the standing job offer she had, and this cold killer couldn’t have taken Eve as she has been set up on Conrad for a month. She then asks Malcolm how Eve died, telling him that suicides have to really be sold. Staging a suicide is complicated and for it to be successful there is not even a whisper of foul play. As the assassin you have to get to know them, their home, and their habits. Malcolm tells Gil they need to go to Eve’s apartment to investigate.
Meanwhile, Ainsley is at Jessica’s venting that she should be working this story, that she is not afraid of him or any man for that matter. Jessica is also not afraid of him, she is upset because she liked him. She thought he was broken like her and he was someone that could understand her. If there is one thing about Ainsley Whitly, it’s that she can take down Endicott, or anyone in a $20,000 suit. She comforts Jessica, saying that her mother is not old.
Martin asks Eddie about his usual guard, wondering if he is okay, and where his telephone is so he can check on his family. Eddie however instructs him that prisoners on this unit are not allowed phone access. Martin is not like other prisoners though. We flashback to when Martin arrived in 1999, followed into the room by Nicholas Endicott. He and Martin sit at the table, discussing that he is in the penthouse of confinement. Martin is already asking for shelves, a desk, and a Persian Rug … while Endicott opens a bottle of Châteauneuf-du-pape. Martin looks at the wine and glasses, hesitantly, even after Endicott tells him he would never poison him, and drinks from both glasses himself. They sit over wine, agreeing this would be the final time Martin and Nicholas see each other. Endicott secured him a comfortable cage, and he wants to walk away as two satisfied parties … so long as there are assurances.
Forward to today, Ainsley is at a upscale bar when she is given a glass of red wine. She tries to say that she did not order it, but Endicott walks up behind her, saying that Pinot Grigio has no personality and the two of them need to have a chat. Nicholas describes the wine he bought for Ainsley while they talk, she comments that it’s delicious. He reiterates, “of course it is, it’s Châteauneuf-du-pape.” Nicholas wants to know why Ainsley is spying on him. Is it because of her mother, that she is dating him? He tells her that he is falling for Jessica and that what Martin did has stifled the potential happiness in the Whitly family. Ainsley lies to him, telling him she’s been watching Nicholas for a profile on his pharmaceutical company. He offers her the road to White House Press Secretary one day, but Ainsley never let herself think that far or that big. But does she believe it?
JT and Malcolm are at Eve’s apartment. While Malcolm looks around for clues he lays down on the bed he once shared with Eve, remembering better times, then notices pinhole cameras in the ceiling! The person who did this lived upstairs from her, watching everything. Through security footage the team figure out the resident of the building knew to avoid the cameras and even have their ears covered, but every day they wore white pants, as part of their uniform. For Malcolm it was almost too easy. He immediately realizes it’s Eddie, the new guard at Claremont with his father … who is also strangling Martin at this very moment as he is working with Endicott! They arrive just in time to give Martin the strength to fight back, and fight back he does. So much so that Martin beats the daylights out of Eddie and ends up trying to gouge out his eyes with his own thumbs! But you know, Martin was being brutally attacked.
Gil stops by to check on Jessica, and they both always worry about Malcolm. Jessica is upset because Eve will never see justice for the man who took her sister. But is that man Martin or Nicholas? Does it matter? They’re both malicious, deceitful, sociopathic criminals. Jessica then realizes that she chose both of them, and there must be something wrong with her to keep choosing bad men. Gil assures her there are good men out there too, and they both messed it up back then (implying that he and Jessica used to have a romantic relationship.) He moved on and had a whole life, but he always had feelings for Jessica. If only her insecurities would have let her be happy then. Did they miss their window after all?
Back at the station, Malcolm and Dani are talking about the case and Malcolm has no assurance that the guy that killed Eve is caught. He tears apart the whiteboard with all the information on it. He has no profile, because this man killed Eve as it was his job to do so, hired by none other than Endicott. Malcolm storms out of the room and Dani tries to ask where he’s going but Malcolm is gone before she gets the chance. Malcolm goes to the hospital to pay Eddie a visit.
Flashback to 1999 with Martin and Nicholas regarding assurances. Nicholas tells Martin that this cell suits Martin for now, but what about in ten years when he goes stir crazy and decides to burn it all down. Martin assures him they have a deal: mutual assurance, or mutual destruction. Nicholas discovered one form of leverage above all the others so he uses it, threatening Martin that if he were to tell anyone about Sophie Sanders, he would not only destroy Martin’s life – he will bankrupt his estate, ruin his children, and make love to his wife. As of this week, Nicholas is well on his way to revenge for Martin spilling the story about Sophie. In the meantime, he did make sure Martin got that nice Persian Rug for his penthouse confinement.
In closing, we see Malcolm in his apartment alone, yelling at the ghost of Eve, when the SWAT team busts in ahead of Gil, JT, and Dani. Eddie was killed in the hospital and Malcolm’s DNA was found on the body. Did Bright really kill Eddie? Find out next week on the season finale of Prodigal Son on Fox at 9 p.m. ET.