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'The Fall' fan recap: A sum of all our choices

Season 2 | Episode 2 | “Night Darkens the Streets” | Aired Jan 16, 2015

If The Fall is anything, it is riddled with tension As we return to the land of DSI Stella Gibson in episode 2 of season 2, we are walking through a dream. Stella brandishes her firearm as she walks through the police office in search of a masked man who is outsmarting her. As he calls her name, she shoots to kill, and unmasks him to find a familiar face before bolting awake in her office. Like it would for any other human being, this chase is starting to weigh on her.

Across town, our killer stands in Rose Stagg’s kitchen, demanding she stop shaking as she writes a note to tell her husband that she went into work early for an emergency. Spector drags her to his car and drives away as her young daughter Nancy, whom he thought he put to bed, looks on. Apparently he didn’t factor her in. As they travel across town, Rose smartly tries to tell him everything he wants to hear in the hope of being released. Unfortunately for her, she has made his life difficult by talking to the police, which he knows by the sketch that was released and billed as nine years old.

When they arrive at their destination, the abandoned building where he posed mannequins in season 1, Rose knows what’s coming. Fighting with all her might doesn’t stop Spector from overpowering her and dragging her inside. Thankfully, she left something behind that might save her life.

In counterpoint to our killer’s late-night abduction, Stella goes about a normal morning swim before appearing at the forensics lab. The scissors they discovered previously are being fast-tracked for evidence. Stella demands finger prints be a first priority before departing for her meeting with Rose Stagg. Naturally, Rose does not show, which prompts possibly the most gasp-inducing moment of the episode. Stella rings Roses’s cell phone, leaving a message that out killer hears, thus solidifying what he already knew: Rose talked. For a killer with a heart for children, Spector certainly does not have a heart for someone who has betrayed him, whether she is a mother or not. As he uploads photos to his laptop, we wonder just what they show. Is Rose Stagg still alive, or did he take his revenge?

As Stella sits with Rose’s husband in the same kitchen from which she was abducted, we find out that Rose was honest with her husband about “Peter,” whom we now know as Paul. Midway through her questions, Detective Burns pulls up out front and demands her presence. He asks why she is there, as he sees no reason. Stella calls it like she sees it—abduction—but Burns hesitates to believe her.

The most chill-inducing moment of this episode comes when Nancy, Rose’s daughter, recites “Peter Piper” with Officer Ferrington (Niamh McGrady) and tells her that she learned it from her mom’s friend Peter last night. Larkin rushes outside to inform Stella, whose next course of action is to search the house. Burns has other ideas, passing the buck to Eastwood and accusing Stella of not being able to see past the killer. Is he right? Or is she merely determined?

Rubbing salt in an already festering wound, Spector uses his pull and gets himself access to Annie Brawley. The poor (or perhaps fortunate) girl doesn’t recognize him and proceeds to talk to him about how the experience makes her feel. Throwing real-life fears in our faces, Annie talks about making a profile on an “adult website,” posting pictures and a video suggesting she might be open to bondage. How many of us have done something similar with something as simple as a social media profile? It’s chillingly realistic. Annie also says that she can’t seem to bring herself to read her old diary entries, which she thought might help her regain herself. But she would be reading the words of a person who no longer exists, wouldn’t she? The very real-life issues that this show forces its audience to experiences with its characters is spectacular.

As Stella visits with ME Reed Smith (Archie Panjabi), she hears her own thoughts come from Smith’s mouth. They did this to Rose. Releasing the sketch and saying that it was from nine years ago tipped him off. However, they have their murder weapon and a fingerprint, which leads them to a name: Paul Spector.

We can add teenage stupidity to the list of female situations this show has a penchant for exploring. Katie Benedetto, Spector’s presumed mistress and otherwise idiot 16-year-old schoolgirl, decides to poke the bear. One way to get to Paul Spector: his daughter. Katie take Olivia from school, and they go for a walk to her favorite place. She clearly knows what she is doing, ignoring Spector’s phone call and grinning like a fool when he passes her a room key and demands that she meet him there. When he finally arrives, having tucked his daughter in and gleaned every ounce of information he could about her time with Katie, we think he might finally do it. He may finally choke her and be done. In a bizarre twist, he ties her up with her own stockings, removes his clothes, and then abruptly gets dressed again. He calls it a test and asks her, “While you struggle, why don’t you have a think about what you want to do next? Life is a sum of all our choices.”

Our episode ends very much like the end of season 1. Gibson and our killer share a phone call where both believe they have the upper hand. Spector leaves her with a final chilling line: “No one can hide with death.” Rose Stagg screams from his truck as he pulls off.

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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