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'The Mysteries of Laura' recap: The skeleton takes a bath

Season 1 |  Episode 5 | “The Mystery of the Terminal Tenant” | Aired Oct 15, 2014

This week’s case on The Mysteries of Laura was a fun mix of action and the macabre. Just in time for Halloween, Laura and her team unravel a baffling case of mistaken identity and murder.

The episode opens on an elderly woman, Miss Greenberg (Sondra James), discovering a skeleton in her tenant’s bathtub. Unfortunately for Laura and Billy, the corpse was dissolved in sulfuric acid, making DNA and fingerprint recognition impossible. There is also no sign of a struggle or forced entry. Assuming the skeleton is tenant Mark Harris, Laura questions Miss Greenberg. Greenberg states that Mark was an ideal tenant until meeting his new girlfriend, Corrine. She complains that Mark went from being a hermit to a party animal.

Meredith finds a fingerprint on a knife in Mark’s apartment belonging to adult party organizer, Carlo Corelli. Laura and Billy stop by Corelli’s Bond Street apartment where a wild party of half-naked people is underway. Corelli and Harris switched apartments for the week using a peer-to-peer rental website, NYPadXchange.com. After sifting through a list of 84 strangers that Mark previously rented his apartment to, they come up with a new suspect, Cody Roberts.

At the crime scene, they are surprised when an unharmed Mark (Adam Shapiro) and Corinne (Virginia Vale) appear. Mark explains that he rented out the apartment to make extra money, clarifying that it was Cody’s skeleton found in the bathtub. Mark also mentions that a woman in a black Escalade was parked outside the week that he rented the apartment to Cody. Laura discovers a flyer for The Melody Buddies music class for children in Cody’s jacket pocket.

In a smart move, Laura persuades Jake to watch the twins at the house on his parent nights. She escapes to a hotel for a junk food-fueled mini break.

“Goodbye Cartoon Network, hello Bravo,” Laura says.

Back at the house, Jake meets Nora, a single mother dropping her son off for the twins’ sleepover. After a few slices of pizza and wine, Jake and Nora start exchanging mild flirtations.

The next morning, Laura and Billy go to Washington Square for the Melody Buddies recital. They spot a young mother who is waiting for Cody to drop off her order of crystal meth. During questioning, she mentions that Cody has a stutter and reveals that he has a partner in Rockaway Beach. Following the young mother’s instructions, Meredith goes to the beach and rents a pair of size 6 ¾ skates from a vendor on the boardwalk. The rental guy gives Meredith a locker and tells her to leave $200 in her shoes. Jake chases the dealer to the Crystal meth lab, just before the building explodes. The partner admits to being terrified of their boss “Jimmy,” a crystal meth king rumored to have murdered Cody.

While staking out a bodega downtown, a hood (an undercover DEA agent) starts a fight with Laura, which quickly escalates into an all-out street brawl. With the DEA’s cooperation, they organize a drug bust to arrest “Jimmy.”

Later that evening, Nora comes to the house and attempts to seduce an uninterested Jake while the kids are upstairs.

“There are some things that room service and a high thread count can’t cure.” Laura teases Bobby as they wait for Jimmy to arrive at the drop the following morning.

During the take down, Laura realizes that “Jimmy” is a woman. When she asks Mark to identify the woman from a lineup, he begins to stutter, revealing his true identity.

Laura also uncovers that Cody’s girlfriend Corrine became the real Mark’s girlfriend to gain information and switched the men’s medical X-rays by working as his dentist’s assistant. By pretending to be Mark, Cody hoped to frame “Jimmy” for his death and start life over elsewhere.

Miss Greenberg turns up at the station to report her missing wallet. Max uses her credit cards to track Cody’s movements around the city and place an APB on the couple. The police arrest Cody and Corrine at an ATM, where they are withdrawing funds to skip town.

The show ends with Jake surprising his family with Chinese food to find the underwear that Nora left at the house the previous evening.

Although the story features a few easy-to-predict plot twists, it is well-paced and entertaining. It is nice to see a focus on more interesting, if not strange, characters, including the gross Corelli and the sad crystal meth-addicted mother who explained the strong appeal of her harmful habit. To see an intuitive detective do a double take when interrogating a suspect is refreshing. The show is beginning to balance exploring and revealing character development with the mystery. Hopefully, over the next few episodes, viewers will learn more about this very likable and relatable team of sleuths.

The Mysteries of Laura airs Wednesdays at 8/7C on NBC.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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