Gracepoint RECAP: Meet the Suspects (S1:E2)

Gracepoint RECAP: Meet the Suspects (S1:E2)

FADE IN:

INT. GRACEPOINT POLICE HEADQUARTERS

Chief Morgan is rubbing his face with frustration as he prepares for a long day of dealing with the gross incompetence of his two lead detectives and the staggering line of townspeople lined up for questioning in the Danny Solano murder case.

ELLIE MILLER:
Chief, you don’t have to take over the case. I can solve this myself. Just send the rude, growly bastard back to Scotland where he belongs and give me his job, like you promised. I’ll have this all sorted out in a week or two.

EMMETT CARVER:
Chief, I can handle this—as long as you let me dump the naïve, overly-invested numbskull and get me a real detective to work with.

ELLIE MILLER:
Sourpuss.

EMMETT CARVER:
Powder-puff.

ELLIE MILLER:
Rude, selfish lout.

EMMETT CARVER:
Unprofessional idiot.

CHIEF CHIEF MORGAN:
Shut up, both of you. This kind of bickering is why I had to take over before that reporter, Renee Clemons, leaks word of your complete incompetence to the whole world and I lose my job. Now, let’s bring in all the suspects one by one and ask them to state their case. Who’s first?

MARK SOLANO:
I’m Mark Solano. Why the fuck am I here? I’m the victim’s dad, for Chrissake!

ELLIE MILLER:
Chief, Mark couldn’t possibly have done anything wrong. I’ve known him for years.

EMMETT CARVER:
You’re here because you nearly punched out the town’s priest and lied to the police about your whereabouts the night of the murder. Oh, and we found your fingerprints at the cabin where Danny was murdered.

MARK SOLANO:
I was on a job. People always call me to fix their plumbing at two in the morning, and when they do, I always slip out without telling my wife where I’ve gone. Also, I was out drinking with a buddy whose name I can’t remember. We went to a bar I just made up, guzzled booze that doesn’t really exist, and then I think I must have eaten something but I can’t possibly remember what, because that meal didn’t really happen. Maybe we partied in the cabin? I just don’t remember, and I am not going to give you any bogus details I might not be able to keep straight later. But I’m not going to tell you where I really was because it’s none of your stinking business. You aren’t going to tell Beth, are you?

ELLIE MILLER:
If you cooperate with us, Mark, I promise we’ll try to keep it quiet. You won’t get in any trouble.

EMMETT CARVER:
(snarls with disapproval)
Ellie, he’s already been arrested.

CHIEF MORGAN:
Why’d you beat up that timid, mousy-looking priest?

MARK SOLANO:
Because he’s been awfully sweet to my wife lately and they are keeping some big secret from me. I don’t like the way he looks at her! Why don’t you question HIM?

CHIEF MORGAN:
OK, we will. Next up: Reverend Paul Coates.

ELLIE MILLER:
Chief, Paul couldn’t possibly have done anything wrong. I’ve known him for years, and besides, he’s a man of the cloth!

PAUL COATES:
Um, hi. I’m… I’m… really nervous. And insecure. And tragically unsuccessful at my job. Would you all like to come to hear my next sermon? I’ll be begging all the people of the town to come together and seek solace in our time of woe. That’s all I preach about now—Danny. This murder has been great for increasing church attendance. God must have sent me a miracle. Oh, wait, did I say that out loud?

CHIEF MORGAN:
Are you and Beth really keeping a secret from Mark? Why did he want to beat you up?

PAUL COATES:
Well, um, you know, professional confidentiality, and all that. You’d have to ask Beth because it’s really not my place to tell you. Mark beat me up because I was crassly exploiting the death of his son for my own benefit, but, hey, it worked! There was twice as much money as usual in the collection plate this Sunday!

EMMETT CARVER:
Any other secrets you might be hiding, priest? Like why you disappeared from Gracepoint for years and suddenly came back again right before this murder took place?

PAUL COATES:
Well, you are just going to have to wait and see, aren’t you? It’s none of your business what my personal secrets are! Oh, wait, did I say that aloud? You aren’t going to tell my bishop, are you?

ELLIE MILLER:
Paul, if you cooperate fully with the investigation I promise we’ll try to keep your private problems private. You won’t get into any trouble.

EMMETT CARVER:
(snarls and takes a clandestine swig out of a flask)

CHIEF MORGAN:
OK, we’ll talk to Beth next. Beth Solano, would you care to tell us what secrets you are hiding from your husband?

BETH SOLANO:
(weeping)
Oooooooh please leeeeeeeeave me aloooooone! Can’t you see how overcome with grief I am?

EMMETT CARVER:
Grief and guilt together, perhaps?

ELLIE MILLER:
Shut up, you heartless, soulless beast! Beth can’t possibly have ever done anything wrong! I’ve known her for years!

BETH SOLANO:
A-a-a-a-also, I’ve been cooperating! I let you fingerprint me, and we are letting your doofus police liaison camp out on our couch, a-a-a-a-and… I’m pregnant! But please, don’t tell Mark!

EMMETT CARVER:
Any reason why you were willing to tell Paul Coates that, but not your own husband? Coates wouldn’t be the real father, or anything like that, would he?

BETH SOLANO:
My personal problems a-a-a-a-a-re none of your business! Can we keep this all quiet?

ELLIE MILLER:
Beth, I promise if you cooperate fully, we won’t tell Mark you are pregnant. He never has to know.

EMMETT CARVER:
Might want to think that through for a second, Miller.

ELLIE MILLER:
Don’t call me Miller. It’s cold.

EMMETT CARVER:
I could call you something worse.

CHIEF MORGAN:
Shut up! Next up: Chloe Solano.

CHLOE SOLANO:
Um. Hi. I, uh… I’m just a kid. Don’t hurt me!

ELLIE MILLER:
Chief, Chloe couldn’t possibly have done anything wrong. I’ve known her for years.

CHIEF MORGAN:
I understand that the CSI guys found cocaine under your floorboards and a shitload of money under Danny’s bed. So, how long have you been in the drug smuggling racket, Chloe?

CHLOE SOLANO:
I swear it wasn’t mine!

ELLIE MILLER:
Of course it wasn’t yours. You were just holding it for somebody, weren’t you, dear?

EMMETT CARVER:
Miller, stop helping her!

CHLOE SOLANO:
Yeah, that’s right. Just holding it for… somebody else. Yeah, that works. It was Gemma Fisher! Blame her!

EMMETT CARVER:
Great, now you’ve made up her cover story for her. Great work, Miller.

CHLOE SOLANO:
Oh, if my Mom and Dad find out I’ve been stashing drugs in my room, I might get grounded for a whole month!

ELLIE MILLER:
Chloe, if you cooperate fully with the investigation, I promise you won’t get into any trouble at all for possession and dealing of Schedule I drugs. We know you aren’t really that kind of kid. We’ll go after your boyfriend instead, because I don’t know him as well.

EMMETT CARVER:
(begins to hyperventilate)
It’s Schedule II, dumbass. You really don’t know your job at all, do you?

CHIEF MORGAN:
OK, next is Gemma Fisher. Would you care to tell me why you had one of your underage employees score you some cocaine?

GEMMA FISHER:
Oh, don’t worry, it wasn’t for me! I was just doing my job as a top hotel owner and perfect hostess! See, there was this couple in from out of town—you know outsiders, they are all much more sinister and suspicious than any of the good people in Gracepoint—and they were staying at my hotel! Fifteen minutes after they arrived in Gracepoint, they realized there was absolutely nothing to do here except stare at the whales, so they decided they might as well get really fucked up. They asked me to get them some drugs! So I made Chloe do it! Hey, she’s my employee! That’s what I pay her for—to get her hands dirty so I don’t have to!

EMMETT CARVER:
Do you score drugs for all the people at your hotel? Because, you know, I’m staying there, too… I might just have to look into that. For professional reasons.

GEMMA FISHER:
Oh, no, I only perform special services for people who pay me a crap-load of money, and you don’t have it, loser. Chloe was so incompetent at drug-dealing, my guests were long GONE by the time she finally scored the dope, and of course, I didn’t need it after that. So I gave it back to her. It’s her drugs now, not mine. Look, am I going to get arrested?

EMMETT CARVER:
For drug dealing and coerced corruption of a minor? Possibly.

GEMMA FISHER:
But can’t we please keep it quiet? I could lose my license! And business has been so bad lately with the murder and everything! All those CSI tents out at the beach are blocking the view of the whales! It’s so inconvenient!

ELLIE MILLER:
Gemma, I promise, if you cooperate with this investigation—

EMMETT CARVER:
Yeah, yeah, you’ll keep it quiet and she won’t get in any trouble. Jesus, Miller, is there anybody you aren’t willing to protect?
(takes another clandestine swig)

CHIEF MORGAN:
Is that water?

EMMETT CARVER:
Sure. You can call it that for now.

ELLIE MILLER:
I know. Let’s call in somebody who actually looks like a creepy outsider, who hasn’t been my best friend for twenty years. How about Jack Rhinehart? He’s old, grizzled, and he hangs around playgrounds staring at the children all day.

CHIEF MORGAN:
OK, fine. Jack Rhinehart, what do you know about all this?

JACK RHINEHART:
I knew Danny really well. He was such a fine, good-hearted, adorable kid. I was so very, very fond of him. And you know what? Since Ellie won’t accept the idea of the killer being anybody except a creepy outsider, have I got a story for you! The day before the murder, I saw Danny talking to this hitchhiker who suddenly appeared out of nowhere. I couldn’t tell what either of them were saying, and I couldn’t describe the guy to you if my life depended on it. And he’s suddenly disappeared again, just as quickly as he came. But there’s your outsider suspect! Can I go now?

EMMETT CARVER:
And you didn’t tell us this the day of the murder because….

JACK RHINEHART:
I only just remembered.

ELLIE MILLER:
When did you remember?

JACK RHINEHART:
Five minutes after you hauled me in for questioning.

ELLIE MILLER:
OK, Jack. Well, you aren’t my closest friend, so we’ll be keeping an eye on you. But there’s at least one other real suspect.

CHIEF MORGAN:
Yes, Susan Wright. Fits the profile of what we’re really looking for. Unkempt, unfriendly, old, chain-smoker, lives in a nasty little trailer down by the beach. All the hallmarks of a perfect suspect.

SUSAN WRIGHT:
Let me outta here, you cretins. I know my rights. I don’t gotta tell you nothing. You don’t got no evidence on me at all. Just ’cause I’m old and ugly don’t make me no murderer.

ELLIE MILLER:
You clean the cabin where Danny really died.

EMMETT CARVER:
And strangely enough, it was scrubbed down very thoroughly the night of the murder. By a professional. Except that you forgot a few fingerprints.

ELLIE MILLER:
And I don’t know you at all, so I really want you to be guilty.

SUSAN WRIGHT:
Them fingerprints probably got left AFTER I scrubbed.

EMMETT CARVER:
Can we search your trailer? You wouldn’t be hiding his missing skateboard or anything, would you?

SUSAN WRIGHT:
Do you want to keep your legs intact? I got a dog, and he bites nosy cops without warrants.

ELLIE MILLER:
I say we book her and call it a day.

EMMETT CARVER:
I say we actually do our jobs.

CHIEF MORGAN:
I say I’m about to reprimand you both. Shut up. Is there anybody we’ve missed?

EMMETT CARVER:
Well, we probably ought to question Ellie’s kid…

ELLIE MILLER:
Don’t you dare! My poor, innocent little baby!

EMMETT CARVER:
Yeah, your poor little innocent baby knows something sinister. So, Tom, what can you tell us?

TOM MILLER:
I swear I don’t know anything! I’ve already deleted all the messages! He was my best friend! I knew all the bad stuff! But I pinkie-sweared that I’d never tell, because that’s what friends are for—to help hide stuff!

ELLIE MILLER:
Oh, poor, poor Tom…

TOM MILLER:
I want my mommy! Mommy, don’t let them hurt me!

ELLIE MILLER:
Never, darling!

EMMETT CARVER:
Oh, for the love of…!

RAYMOND CONNOLLY:
(wanders in)
Uh, is this where they are questioning all the suspects? Because I want you to question me. Because I know things from beyond the grave.

CHIEF MORGAN:
Aren’t you the guy we called in to fix our phone lines?

RAYMOND CONNOLLY:
Yeah, but I looked at all the murder photos I saw carelessly lying around on your officer’s desks—really, you ought to be more careful—and decided I want to be involved. So Danny wants me to tell you that somebody put him in a boat after he died. Does that help?

EMMETT CARVER:
Not even a little bit.

RAYMOND CONNOLLY:
(to Carver)
She forgives you for the pendant. Now, go freak out.

EMMETT CARVER:
(runs out the door, hyperventilating wildly, with a suspicious-looking syringe in his hand)

RENEE CLEMONS:
(wanders in with Owen)
Hi, I’m Renee Clemons of the San Francisco Globe, and I’m here to smear your town and everybody in it to oblivion because I have no morals or scruples at all! I’m a vulture, and I just became Chloe’s best friend so she’ll end up telling me everything she knows and I can become the most notorious reporter in the world!

OWEN BURKE:
And I’m aiding and abetting her quest so that I can get out of this lousy, podunk, whale-worshiping shit-hole of a town.

ELLIE MILLER:
But Owen, you can’t possibly rat us all out! You aren’t that kind of person! I’ve known you for y—

OWEN BURKE:
Ellie, you don’t know shit.

ELLIE MILLER:
How many lives have you ruined so far, you horrible outsider?

RENEE CLEMONS:
Hee hee. See that freakout Carver just had? I made sure the whole world knew that he botched the Rosemont murder case, and I can only hope that I was part of the reason why it failed! I report all the unfounded gossip that my editor decides won’t cause a major libel lawsuit! Oh, by the way, Morgan—you might ask Carver if those are withdrawal symptoms and what drug he’s on. He’s a creepy outsider, too, so nobody will care! I know you small-town types; you only think strangers can be bad people!

EMMETT CARVER:
(wanders back in)
Uh, I’m OK now. I just, um, had to go to the bathroom. And do… stuff.

ELLIE MILLER:
What stuff?

EMMETT CARVER:
None of your business.

CHIEF MORGAN:
So, let’s see if I’ve got this straight. Beth’s hiding her pregnancy from Mark, Chloe’s hiding drugs from her parents, Gemma’s hiding a fledgling drug racket from the police, Paul’s hiding his real motivations from his congregation, Carver’s hiding a serious drug or medical problem from the other cops, Renee’s hiding her real agenda from Chloe, Tom’s hiding messages from his mom, and Mark’s hiding his actions and whereabouts the night of the murder from everybody.

ELLIE MILLER:
But there has to be perfectly reasonable explanations for all this. I know these people. I know how to handle these people. Nobody here could ever do anything wrong…

RENEE CLEMONS:
And when they do, I’ll be right there with the story, because this is the biggest scoop of my career! Oh, this murder is the best thing that ever happened to me!
(dances out, singing the lyrics to Billy Squire’s “Dirty Laundry”)

EMMETT CARVER:
Can we book her instead?

CHIEF MORGAN:
Did she do it?

EMMETT CARVER:
Probably not, but if Ellie can eliminate people from suspicion just because she likes them, I guess I can finger people because I hate them for ruining my life.

CHIEF MORGAN:
Remind me why I’ve got you two bozos on this investigation?

EMMETT CARVER:
Because every other cop in the county has been pulled for crowd control during the current whale-watching festivals.

ELLIE MILLER:
We have our priorities straight here at Gracepoint.

Previous Episodes:

Season 1

Episode 1: Like Broadchurch But With 50% Less Calories and Flavor

Want more Claire Abraham? Check out her website – Recapper’s Delight!

TV Show: Gracepoint

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