How to Get Away with Murder RECAP: It's All Her Fault... or Is This Even Allowed? (S1:E2)
- Three months in the future, Dean Thomas and the gang are covering up a dead body—who is Annalise Keating’s husband, Sam.
- Annalise Keating is a cutthroat lawyer—who is cheating on her husband.
- Lila Stangard’s missing body has been found—and Dean Thomas’ neighbor might be connected to her death. Oh, and Sam might be too.
- America’s Next Top Lawyer might be Laurel, Michaela, Dean Thomas, Connor, or this annoying classmate Asher.
- Everyone is sleeping with everyone and everyone might kill everyone someday and they’ll probably get away with it, considering the title of the show.
At the beginning of the episode, I thought I was watching the pilot again because we were treated to literally the exact same three opening minutes where America’s Next Top Lawyers (Connor, Michaela, Laurel, and Dean Thomas) were debating about how to bury the dead body. I was about to change the channel but then we got a scene at Casa Keating.
In her kitchen, Annalise is reading about the Lila Stangard murder. Sam comes in and announces that he has to go attend a grief counseling session. Annalise is suspicious and Sam assures her that he will be at the session as a psychologist, not because he is someone who was affected by Lila’s death.
In class, Annalise must be writing her curriculum based off of her personal life because she announces that the lesson of the day is to never believe anything anyone tells you. Hence, the reason for why she doesn’t give fudge over whether the clients she defends are innocent or guilty—you never truly know who people are. “Everyone lies about who they are,” she tells them. She picks on Asher, the annoying douche, and asks if he really is the annoying, obnoxious frat boy that he is on the surface.
Then, Annalise introduces them to the Case of the Week: Maxwell St. Vincent is accused of stabbing his wife to death and America’s Next Top Lawyers have to defend him. There is a field trip to the crime scene, which for some reason the students are allowed to poke around in and touch stuff—including the blood on the walls.
Yep, totally legal. Don’t question it—if Annalise said it was legal, do it. But don’t say nothing to no cops, you hear?
The client, Maxwell St. Vincent, is a creepy guy and I’m betting he did it because he is way too cavalier about being on trial for murder. He jokes about the blood on the wall, saying, “This room needed a little color anyway”.
He recreates the murder with a little too much accuracy and enthusiasm. This guy is totally guilty, but Bonnie and Frank hand out assignments for the defense anyway. Annalise calls Dean Thomas to her office, which makes Connor jealous and he asks what Annalise sees in him. Asher jokes that maybe he is Annalise’s long lost son. Michaela gently breaks it to him that not all black people are related.
In her office, Annalise makes sure that Dean Thomas isn’t going to squeal about her affair or about the fact she got her boyfriend to commit perjury for her. Dean Thomas swears that he is on her side and runs an errand for her. Later, he is chilling out in his apartment when his neighbor, Goth Girl, knocks on the door to ask to use his shower. This could be the start of friendship between them, but then Goth Girl insults Dean Thomas’s feng shui and says she liked the former occupant’s furniture better. For a girl who seems to hate Dean, she is pretty comfortable stripping off her clothes in front of him before heading into the shower.
Back to the future: There is another replay from the pilot where they flip the coin to decide what to do with the body. Come on, I was here last week—I know what happened. Dean Thomas flips the coin and announces that they have to go back, except this time we see that Dean Thomas lied about the coin toss. He takes charge and starts ordering everyone around. Man, Dean Thomas is tough.
Back at the office, America’s Next Top Lawyers are watching a report on Lila Stangard’s murder. Asher makes the insensitive, although accurate, observation that since Lila’s body was found in the water tank, this means that the sorority sisters were drinking corpse-tainted water. There is an interview with Griffin, Lila’s boyfriend, and Dean Thomas remembers seeing him outside of his neighbor’s apartment.
Back on the case, Dean Thomas reports to Annalise that there’s a discrepancy on the case report. Not to be outdone, Connor hooks up with his IT Boy Toy to also dig up some dirt. With America’s Next Top Lawyers working together, they are able to prove that the same cop who was at the crime scene wasn’t the same one who filled out the police report, which makes the prosecution look sketchy.
Annalise’s boyfriend shows up at the court house and warns her to quit embarrassing cops. He’s mad that she blackmailed him into lying for her and dumps her. “You won your case and got laid,” he pouts. “Now leave me alone.” It’s so sad that Annalise lost such a good-looking side dude. Her wig is awful though; maybe that’s why he left her.
Three months into the future, Dean Thomas is at the gas station buying gasoline and matches. He also buys a pre-paid phone. He makes a call to an unknown person and promises to take care of everything. Meanwhile, at Casa Keating, Annalise looks through Sam’s phone to see if he was having an affair with Lila. However, the emails are innocent but Annalise refuses to let go of her suspicion.
At his apartment, Dean Thomas passes by Goth Girl. He mentions seeing her and Griffin together and advises her to never talk to the cops without a lawyer. “I know. I’m not an idiot and you’re not a lawyer,” she snaps. Meanwhile, Laurel drops off some homework and frets to Bonnie that she’s only on the squad because Frank wants to sleep with her. Bonnie is like, “I don’t care. Buck up, kid.”
The defense decides to call in a character witness—Maxwell’s daughter, Eloise. Annalise warns the squad that they must extensively prep witnesses because a wrong step can ruin their case. Maxwell introduces his daughter to America’s Next Top Lawyers and makes the inappropriate, but true, comment that she and Dean Thomas would make beautiful chocolate babies.
They grill Eloise to make sure that she won’t fall apart on the stand, but even they are not prepared when the prosecution brings out their own dirty, underhanded evidence. The prosecution reveals that Maxwell was on trial for murdering his first wife in Switzerland, which shocks Eloise, who was told that her mother died in a car crash.
Eloise is outraged and begins to fear that her father is indeed a vicious killer. Meanwhile, Annalise tells Maxwell, “Lucky for you, I like a challenge. But lie to me again and I’ll whoop your ass.”
At the office, Connor can’t handle his Boy Toy drama and Michaela teases him about it. “Wait, you’re gay?” asks a confused Asher. They give him withering stares and ignore him.
Hey, why isn’t Asher with them three months in the future when the squad is hiding dead bodies? Well to be fair, Asher is really annoying. You really wouldn’t invite him to that type of thing.
Sam enters the office and he and Annalise talk privately. She accuses him of having an affair with Lila, especially since he slept with one of his students before. Sam calms her down, and Annalise admits that she’s afraid of losing the case. Frank interrupts to present Annalise with new information.
America’s Next Top Lawyers are ordered to revisit crime scene and find new clues for their defense. Laurel realizes that Maxwell is a hunter who knows how to kill—there’s no way he could have committed such a messy murder. In the courtroom, Annalise brings a medical examiner to compare the two murders Maxwell was accused of. The first one was committed neatly, and Maxwell admits that he used his hunting experience to kill his wife.
Wait, did he just admit to murder?
The trial is allowed to proceed since Maxwell can’t be tried again for the first murder due to double jeopardy. Since Maxwell admitted that he is capable of murder, you might think the defense has already lost but Annalise still thinks they have a chance. Dean Thomas realizes that Eloise already knew the truth about her mother’s murder and believes she killed Maxwell’s new wife as revenge. Annalise tells him that it’s a cute theory but doesn’t admit that it’s the truth. Their priority is helping Maxwell get away with murder, not delivering justice.
After the defense rests, Annalise tells the team that currently only Laurel and Dean Thomas are on track to become America’s Next Top Lawyers. “Watch out for the quiet ones,” she tells the others. Somehow, Maxwell is declared not guilty, and the crowd revolts. “Okay, I don’t like this part,” says Michaela as they all hustle into the elevator to avoid the angry mob.
On the court steps, Annalise tells Maxwell what his daughter did. He promises to punish her—he won’t murder her although he’ll keep Annalise’s number, just in case.
Yep. Totally deserved that not guilty verdict.
Connor visits his Boy Toy with takeout and manages to win him over for the night. At Casa Keating, there is not as much love and trust. Annalise checks Sam’s phone again and sees he deleted his emails to Lila. She makes an excuse to leave and visits her ex-boyfriend, Nate. She tells him that Sam might be a suspect in Lila’s case and begs him to double check Sam’s alibi. Nate tries to tell her to go home, but Annalise refuses. She is hysterical yet commanding.
This is Viola Davis’ Emmy right here.
She goes back home and initiates sex with Sam. Afterward, he asks if they are okay and Annalise tells him, “We’re good. I promise”. But then she rolls over and looks troubled.
As Dean Thomas is about to head into his apartment, he sees Goth Girl getting arrested. He warns her not to talk without a lawyer, and Goth Girl is too frightened to make a snarky remark. A report on the news reveals that Griffin was also arrested and that Goth Girl is a drug dealer. Dean Thomas realizes Goth Girl hid a phone in his bathroom when she came over to take a shower.
Back in the future, Dean Thomas separates from the group to go to a shady motel. Who is staying there? Annalise? No, it’s Goth Girl! He hugs her! Oh, how nice: they are going to be friends in the future—OH MY GOD THEY ARE MORE THAN FRIENDS. HE KISSES HER. THEY KILLED SAM KEATING FOR HER!!!
Hang on, but why? Guess we’ll have to tune in next week.
What we learned about getting away with murder:
- You can totally go to crime scenes and mess with them to find new clues.
- Murder trials are so prompt no one even has a chance to clean up the crime scene before the not guilty verdict.
- Get a dorky IT Boy Toy who will dig up evidence for you. All you have to do is buy him takeout.
- When you want to convince your friends to bury a dead body, do a coin toss.
- If you wanna score with your neighbor, offer to hide a dead body for her.