Janet King S03E05 Recap: Will They, Won’t They?
Crime busting, a very big question, lots and lots of feels, and then… more crime busting.
THIS JUST KEEPS GETTING BETTER! And with my withdrawal symptoms already kicking in, despite there still being three episodes left, I have to ask the question. Why are there only eight episodes per season? I understand we wouldn’t want to slow down the narrative too much, nor do we need to introduce any other side-stories or possible red herrings… but eight just isn’t enough.
Personally I’d love a whole episode of extreme Janet and Bianca adorableness – maybe even a ‘moving in’ episode. I’d watch that, from the booking of the U-Haul, to the takeaway dinner at the end of the day because who cbf cooking when you’ve just moved house? A friend of mine suggested a whole episode of Janet and Maxine glaring at one another (hi SJ!), but I think that wouldn’t last a whole episode because Maxine is a shark and thus only has a skeleton made of cartilage, so doesn’t have the backbone of Janet, and one would need a fossilised backbone of solid rock to beat Janet in a glaring contest. But my point is – we need at least 10, or even 12, episodes of this wonderful show, because just as we’re fully used to it being back on our TVs again, it’s all over far too quickly. Something for us all to think about next time we hashtag-janetking on twitter!
Onto the show! We open this week with Nate doing his absolute lolly after having been convicted, and firing Richard for not being good enough to keep him out of prison. Richard says at this stage there’s no grounds for an appeal… so Nate tells him to fuck off. Richard leaves, and Lucy tells Nate to calm his farm, he gets too angry at stuff. Maxine says the same, so he fires her too. She says, ‘well you don’t have to be a dickhead about it,’ but frankly, I think that’s just in his nature. He wants a new barrister to run an appeal, and Lucy goes after Richard, presumably to say, you’re actually not really fired, but then we find out that Nate’s worst fear is losing Lucy if he’s locked up for 12 years. Lucy is worried that she’ll have no money because “I don’t have a bank account. Nate has all the cards and takes cares of everything. Why is that so strange?” (It’s 2017, little lady…) Before Maxine leaves, Nate says he’s ‘gotta spill his guts to the NCC to knock some time off his sentence’. Maxine snaps at him, “You tell them nothing. Now you think about this very carefully for everyone’s sake.” Under. The. Bus. (Metaphorically speaking, of course, not literally like Clay Nelson who we do get back to in this episode).
You will STFU and rot in here before you open your mouth!
Janet brings Eddie Cook into the NCC and he states he didn’t see who ran him off the road, that he argued with Maxine about cancelling Lucy Baldwin’s contract as the face of Continuum, and Zoe Da Costa came in to get something to help one of her athletes recover from an injury. But he ‘wasn’t paying attention because the argument with Maxine had shaken him up.’ POUNCE! Janet jumps – but all you talked about was Lucy Baldwin. Eddie’s face drops, he sits back and it’s written all over him – damn, screwed myself there… Straight out from Eddie’s testimony (if that’s what they call it with the NCC), Wayne tells Janet she put the wind up him – he immediately called a pre-paid mobile registered in the name of Dorothy Gale, which Janet informs us is Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz. Someone do tell, please, how tf Janet King knows this. I mean, I know she knows everything, but even everything has its limits, and I would have thought Dorothy’s surname was somewhere on the edge of the infinitesimal edges of even Janet’s knowledge base. But anyway, it turns out Dorothy is actually Maxine, who basically tells him that this isn’t fucking Kansas – or even Oz for that matter – so don’t ever call me on this phone again. But now the DreamTeam (henceforth known as the DT) know that Maxine has a burner, so while her legit phone was at home, so she could therefore use that as an alibi for not running Eddie off the road, that’s completely discounted if she had her burner with her (was there not a possibility that she may have gone out without her phone? Very circumstantial in the evidence department I would think… but I’m no lawyer or cop so I wouldn’t know).
Dorothy’s surname? Why do you think I’m the girl everyone wants on the Quiz Night table?
Speaking of surnames – should we hyphenate when we get married?
Bonnie then lets them know that via the track on Flynn’s phone that they heard that Cindy is in hospital from drinking something, ‘not alcohol, sounded like some drug or something.’ Janet looks knowingly at Bianca and next thing they’re striding (side-by-side *sigh*!) down a hospital corridor to “go and check on Cindy” (…i.e. get the stuff off Pearl!). Pearl ‘fesses up that she got some stuff ‘in a little brown bottle’ from Flynn, but she doesn’t know where it is and storms out of the hospital pissed off at Janet for asking her if she still had it. Janet looks into the room where Cindy’s distraught mother is sitting beside her hospital bed, and must be wondering what lies ahead with her own two children. Like – you never think bad stuff is going to happen to you, but bad stuff does happen, and sometimes to good people. And sometimes to their kids. And sometimes to their wives who get shot in the back after doing the grocery shopping… Wayne reports the doctor in emergency said that the girls said they didn’t have any of the stuff, but when Janet realises Pearl knows its worth, she’s pretty quick to twig that Pearl still has it. The hunt is on. Janet gets a track on Pearl’s phone, but she’s turned it off.
I lost it. At the park… or in the bottom of my bag somewhere.
Janet in her desperation to find Pearl before she does something stupid goes to see her mother, but gets a more than icy reception. Pearl’s nothing more than a ‘little slut’ and a ‘lying little shit’, according to her mother, but Tyler was the golden boy going to help them all live better lives. We find out that Pearl was a very good soccer player, but the opportunities for girls were limited and she basically dropped out. Janet’s appeal to her ‘she’s still your daughter’ does little to change her mother’s mind, and what few possessions Pearl has, by way of a box of sports trophies, are shoved into Janet’s hands with a ‘if you love her so much, you take it.’ Janet, again, is at a loss how a relationship between a parent and her child can break down so badly, and that by age 15 this is where it has reached.
Just keep her, I don’t want her anymore.
Janet is told in no uncertain terms by Mrs Perati to piss off, and as she’s walking back to the car, Bonnie calls to say she’s tracked Pearl’s phone, and Janet is on her way, arriving just as Pearl’s doing a deal for a great wad of cash in exchange for the bottle of juice. Needless to say her ‘customer’ high tails it as he sees Janet approaching. Now Pearl is mighty peeved and yells, “Why can’t you just leave me alone?” Janet replies, “Why can’t you tell me the truth?” Pearl yells something about being a below average human, but tbh I’m not sure if she’s talking about herself or Janet, but tells Janet to fuck off just for good measure. And this conversation is going nowhere fast. Janet’s not great with subtlety, let’s be honest, and she’s also not one for beating about the bush, so she pretty much just demands that Pearl hand the stuff over, or she could get herself into really, really big trouble cos it’s really, really important stuff (that will help the guy who killed your bro get out of jail, but sshhh we won’t mention that part), and so Pearl gives it up, but being 15 tries the ‘yeah well thanks for making sure I can’t get the money I need for my own place’ guilt trip, which actually does have an effect on Janet, but not one she’s quite ready to deal with just yet.
Just a friendly sidewalk chat.
No, I’m not threatening legal action, Pearl, this is my happy face!
*CUTE LESBIAN MOMENT ALERT #1*
Back at home with the delightful Bibi, Janet is berating herself for breaking the bond she had with Pearl, but Bibi being the cop she is, tells her she did the right thing as the drug is absolutely crucial to everything they’re trying to achieve. And besides, Bianca tells her, “She’s 15, my tantrums were epic at 15.” Janet can barely believe that the cool, calm and controlled cop of today would ever have had a tantrum. (Check that old AAMI ad Janet, you’ll see what she means…) Then adorableness! Bianca assures her she did the right thing, “Stop being so tough on yourself.” Janet’s voice drops, “It’s a hard habit to break.” Bianca assures her, “I’m doing my best,” as she draws her in for a sweet kiss, “Yes, you are.” A reply full of gracious appreciation for the person who’s right by her side in everything she does, quietly supporting her and basically being the woman of her dreams.
Richard is helping Lucy sort the finances – lucky for her. Nate has paid ahead in a whole bunch of things – clearly not as boneheaded as he appears, but certainly has a very tight rein on what his wife can and can’t do. Richard advises she become a signatory on the savings account and at least she’ll have some money to live on. Much relieved, Lucy invites Richie to stay for a drink. He shows off his “bigger words and lower testosterone” than Nate, she’s happy that someone actually listens and talks to her (rather than Nate), he asks her to play the piano for him, she plays beautifully (of course), he’s blown away (of course)… next thing she’s kisses him – he hesitates for about a nanosecond, and then decides that holy shit, he’s got this redoink hot woman right here who’s kissing him and bam, haven’t we seen this coming since episode 1? Oh Richard, another beautiful, yet inappropriate woman for you to pine over and ultimately beat yourself up over for doing things with her that you really have no business doing.
Oh Stirlo, you know that Nate has more testosterone, fewer words and an anger management problem, don’t you?
Morning breaks, and the DT have the results from the lab – THX5, confirmed as the drug that killed Tyler and caused the gastro bleed in Cindy. But wait, there’s more. The reason it’s never tested positive is because it’s not on ASADA’s banned list, because it’s never actually been tested on people, so is therefore not fit for human consumption as it technically doesn’t exist. Bianca’s dry reply, “Well, it’s there in a bottle,” unfortunately doesn’t fly, as pretty much the whole Devils team were being used as guinea pigs. Bonnie says that something to do with Tyler’s DNA meant he would have bled easily from the blood thinners in the PED, something the other players didn’t have, and only testing in the lab would have uncovered that anomaly. Janet points out that this now breaks causation for Nate having killed Tyler, and Tony says they’re going to have to have to hand the evidence over to Richard because if they wait to use it as leverage to get Nate to talk to them, they’re perverting the course of justice. “We need a different tactic.” Never one to back down, despite this set back, Janet replies, “Challenge accepted. I’ll go and tell Richard we’ve saved his number 1 client.” But given Richard’s nocturnal activities the night before – will he want that evidence??
Bonnie (being an analyst, not a lawyer) doesn’t quite get why they can’t use the same tactic from pre-trial of ‘we’ve got what you want, so talk and we’ll give it to you,’ but now Janet explains that it’s now a case of increasing the pressure on Nate, Flynn and Eddie to spill the beans on who the “Big Boss” is (they’re still suspecting Maxine), and the first one to talk gets protected… Janet calls Richard who’s all like, “oh yeah… that’s great… fantastic…” (NOT HAPPY), and Lucy refuses to look him in the eye but says firmly, “It stays between us.” Ditched again Stirlo, and you wanna hope Nate-the-man-with-anger-issues never finds out you slept with his wife!
Janet and Bianca go to meet Flynn and Pearl, to let Flynn know that the drug that was in his possession, and that he administered to Tyler was what killed him. It’s all a bit of a set up to get Pearl riled up, so she’ll press charges against him for sex with a minor. She goes nuts as Janet planned and wrestles him to the ground, needing Janet and Bianca to separate them as Flynn’s yelling, “get the fuck off me”. Pearl wants him “locked up straight away”, but Janet explains to her he might not get convicted of anything because he was just injecting him and that’s not illegal. BUT if she’s willing to talk to the cops about what he’s been doing to her they could get him on that. She thinks for a moment, asks if he’d go to jail, and then agrees. She breaks down crying in Janet’s arms as Janet tells her, “Let’s end this alright.” Hopefully that’s the end of the arrogant little scum-sucking bottom-dweller.
Give the vile creature just enough rope...
Yeah, 15 – and he’s 28.
Pearl makes an attempt to get Janet to let her come and crash on her sofa, but Janet refuses, saying her kids are her priority – Pearl of course takes it very personally, believing Janet’s thinking she’ll corrupt the twins, but Janet is totally and completely invested in this kid, and instead sets her up in a serviced apartment, and delivers her there, along with some groceries. Her attempt to ‘lay down the law’ to a rebellious and independent teen who’s seen the rough side of life, doesn’t go down to well. “That’s just the situation you got me out of, isn’t it?”, so she rephrases to ‘they’ll kick you out if anyone complains about you.’ Pearl understands this language, and when Janet asks if they’re “cool?”, I’m sure it’s not just Pearl who’s thinking Janet “doesn’t say that much”. Janet’s wry and self-deprecating smile shows she can (and sometimes does) take herself not-so-seriously.
You see, what I do for a living is I trick people into saying and believing things they might not necessarily want to, so while you think I’m not setting you a bunch of rules, this here is a bunch of rules. Cool?
Hahahaha! Flynn’s on the stand, “I just followed protocol, don’t know what it was, just did as I was told… and my dad knows some pretty good lawyers – and the State Police Commissioner.” Bibi and Jaz are onto him before the words are even fully formed, “Well I’m with the Feds” and “I don’t care who you’re father knows because I AM THE BEST THERE EVER WAS!” Oh no, she actually said – “We’ve already got compelling evidence of at least one count of perjury.” When the recording is played, Flynn starts to panic, demanding a lawyer (Tony: “request denied”), and says he’s not answering any questions (Tony: “I hope you brought your toothbrush because you’re not going home till you cooperate.”) Ha! Flynn then says it was all Eddie, I just worked there and Tony concludes the hearing. Flynn thinks he’s off the hook, until Bianca informs him the state police would like a word, and Janet says he might like to think about what he has to say once he realises the depth of shit he’s in.
The original DT are still trying to find out who’s the actual Top Dog in the match-fixing / betting scam; they’re not liking the odds on Eddie, preferring to throw their cash behind Maxine. Janet hopes that Flynn will come running for a deal and the first question will be where does Maxine fit in? Bianca’s not sure doing a deal with Flynn is a great idea, after the promise she made Pearl, but Janet’s hoping she doesn’t have to sacrifice one outcome for the other. She’s hoping thinking Flynn will do a deal will get Nate to talk first, so they need to get Flynn up for trial ASAP so that all potential witnesses are running scared and wanting to be the first to talk to get Wonka’s Golden Ticket of Protection. Janet wishes Tony, “Good luck with managing that”, and Tony, ever sardonic, echoes her own words back to her, “Challenge accepted.” Janet takes the file to Richard, who informs her that he won’t be running the appeal as Nate fired him, but Janet tells him he owes it to Nate to do it because he knows the case best. She also suggests that there are others about to come clean to the NCC, and if Nate gets in first, well… But Richard says he doesn’t feel comfortable representing Nate anymore. “Why not - because he fired you? Don’t be such a sook,” Janet tells him. He doesn’t reply, “Well it’s actually because I bonked his wife…” Maxine arrives as Janet is leaving and in not so many words tells Janet “we win, no deals, so bugger off”, but Janet notices a dent and blue paint on Maxine’s front fender (Eddie’s car?), takes a photo and files info for later.
Tony goes to see Snake-Oil Owen to tell him he might want to get some statements sorted for the public because there’s new evidence that may very well clear Nate Baldwin, and last thing he wants is public confidence in the DPP to plummet after the Clay Nelson ‘thing’. Owen’s a little pissed off that both Janet and Tony have “tried to tell me how to do my job”, but Tony assures him he just wants to give him the heads up, but as a return favour, would he mind pushing this Flynn Pearce trial through as a matter of urgency. He can’t tell him why – confidential, of course – but he wants to work together to make sure the law does its job and the baddies are locked up. But will it help Owen? That will influence his decision, big time. So… he gets Lina on board – her specialty is sex crimes BUT he wants her to try and get Janet to talk. Why do the NCC want this expedited? Lina’s deep sigh and sarcastic, “that’s something to look forward to”, when Owen suggests Janet will want to tell her how to run the prosecution annoyed the crap out of me – Janet has more knowledge of the law in her little finger than you’ll ever have Lina, and if she wants to give you some advice, don’t be a petulant teenager - just gratefully accept. Janet was always a tough boss, but she never ran a boys’ club, and always gave credit where it was due. Unlike Owen and Ben.
What do I get out of it?
The satisfaction of having done the right thing. Are you familiar with that emotion?
And then – he sweet-talks Bonnie into dinner, saying he was really interested in her comments about Gender Equity (remember he was singlehandedly responsible for raising the number of women employees at the DPP /sarcasm), and Bonnie just about falls over with her enthusiasm to accept the invitation – I mean why wouldn’t she, she doesn’t know what a disingenuous, manipulative snake Owen can be. Smack on 5 and she’s out the door, surprising Wayne, who thinks she never leaves the place. Bonnie says she has a ‘hot date’, and if Bianca knew it was with Owen, I don’t think she’d be saying, “Even an analyst deserves a private life.” Of course, when Bonnie begins talking about Gender Equity, Owen’s actually not that interested – he only wants to know about the NCC, but with Bonnie’s strongest talent being her ability to talk on any topic, she’s happy to have the subject changed. Be careful Bonnie – you know what they say, “loose lips sink ships”. You’ve already experienced the full wrath of Janet once – do you really want that shit-storm raining down on your head again?
*REALLY, REALLY CUTE LESBIAN MOMENT ALERT #2*
Oh the domesticity is just too adorable! It’s nearly dinner time, kids are colouring in at the table, Bianca’s making sandwiches for kids’ lunches tomorrow (my advice – put the tomato in a separate little container so they can add it at school and the bread doesn’t go soggy), Janet’s opening the wine, and they’re talking about Pearl.
B: You know what you’re doing, but I’m here to listen.
J: Except when you’re not.
B: Have to pick up a change of clothes occasionally…
J: Leave more stuff here.
B: How much?
J: As much as you want.
B: Good time to mention my lease is up?
J: (pauses) [OMG I thought she was going to say, not yet, and I was GOING TO CRY!]
[You sneaky, sweet, gorgeous, cheeky adorable petal, you!]
(Then she looks at the slightly confused look on her beautiful gf’s face and leans in to kiss her, and says…)
I love you.
B: I love you too. (Brain is ticking over – WTF just happened then??) You sure?
J: Yeah! It’s good.
B: (umm… right, I’ll just get back to these sandwiches, shall I?)
The hearts of lesbians (and c’mon, most straight people too, lesbi-honest here) exploded all over the country and caused a seismic occurrence that registered on the lower ends of the Richter scale, but registered nonetheless. Too much adorable – now this is TV drama, so we know all this sunshine and happiness is going to have to have some conflict in there somewhere… I mean where’s the tension, apart from a tiny bit in episode 2 (we lesbians remember these details), so please just get it over and done with, don’t make it too harsh, and PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE let them have a happy ending by the end of episode 8.
Then it’s back to business, and Janet goes with Richard to see Nate about the new evidence and implores him to tell her what he knows. He says he doesn’t know what they were on, but his silence when she says he knows about the fixed matches is telling. He agrees he was involved in the gambling, but not ‘heavily’. When she pushes him, he’s petrified and refuses to say anything more, because he doesn’t want to “end up like Oliver Pittman.” But he’s also REALLY pissed off that the supplements weren’t safe and tested before they were administered to the players. He says he asked the coach, and the coach assured him they were. The whole supplement thing very closely resembles stories from clubs within Australia’s two major football codes – the AFL and the NRL. Players injected with unknown substances, nobody failing tests; Janet King (the show) knows how to hit to the heart of the Australian sporting ‘win at all costs’ culture. But when Nate doesn’t answer any questions even though Janet assures him the first to talk will be protected, and Richard doesn’t advise that he should, Janet’s kinda peeved with Richard, telling him, “The Richard I once knew would have helped me out with that one.” Sadly that Richard has now become Stirlo, a different person altogether.
So now we’ve got Eddie back on the stand. He blamed Mitchell Douglas for asking for the bets, and said he got it from a chemist who made the concoction up himself. It wasn’t banned and that was all the coach wanted. He never told them it had never been tested on humans because they never asked. It was getting results and that was all anyone cared about. He knew about the gambling but can’t recall who told him. Janet hounds him, and after he checks that the transcripts are classified, says that it was his drug and his program that killed Tyler Perati. She then delivers a beautiful right hook to the jaw, “And while the transcripts are classified, at the conclusion of this reference, key findings may be published at our discretion. So I have to forewarn you that such a disclosure would have a very negative impact on your business… Or we could take into consideration the extent of your cooperation.” She asks again, and after a moment to consider he once again replies, “I can’t recall.” Too frightened by it all to save his business and reputation. But Janet says what we’re all thinking – smug bastard!
I might just ruin you if you shit me off hard enough.
Bonnie has been busy (when not dining with Mr Snake-Oil) tracking phone calls and has found that Clay’s mystery visitor (who I don’t think they know is also arson guy yet) called Maxine’s burner phone 17 times, and she also received calls from the captains of the teams the Devils beat in the thrown matches. Suddenly the DT are thinking they don’t need to get anyone to talk and spill names, they might have just caught a very big fish. Ha! With all the swag you can imagine, while Maxine and Richard are about to pop the cork on some bubbles in celebration of “Nate gets out and no one dobs on anyone. I feel like a semi-trailer has rolled off my chest”, Bianca turns up with the warrant for Maxine to appear at the NCC again. Maxine is not happy.
Lie #1: She didn’t ask Eddie for any of the stuff that the Devils were getting.
Lie #2: She didn’t know Clay asked Oliver to bowl a wide delivery.
Lie #3: She didn’t tell anyone what to bet on.
Lie #4: She didn’t know that on the morning he died, Clay was about to ‘fess up who runs the syndicate.
Lie #5: She believes his death was a terrible accident.
Oh, she’s good, Janet is soooooo good! She almost, almost cracks Maxine, talking about Clay’s son losing his father… but Maxine recovers her poker face after letting it slip way down around her chin, and reiterates Lie #5. Then Janet plays the transcript of Mystery Man threatening to kill Reed, and her poker face drops again. She claims not to know him, but for the first time all season, Maxine’s cage is well and truly rattled, and the fast talking sport agent is very much on the back foot.
Need more than a gin and tonic and a Mystery Man to get me out of this mess.
Thinking cap on.
Love how Bibi gets Janet, while Tony’s still trying to catch up.
The Devils hold a presser – it was all the coach’s fault, we’ve never failed an ASADA test, he’s been sacked yada, yada, yada… Mitchell says it was Eddie the Scientist, he told him it was safe, they made it to the semis on the back of bloody hard work, and he would never put his players at risk. The DT call Mitchell in on account of the dent and scratches on his car that look very much like they could have been a pretty good match for the car that ran Eddie off the road. Yep, it was old Mitchell – he was REALLY pissed off at Eddie, he just wanted to protect his players, he was angry that Eddie’s shit killed Tyler, and so he followed him with the intention of having it out with him, but just lost control of his anger and smashed his car into his. Chalk this bloke up to another with anger management issues. But at the end of the day, he’s a decent guy caught up in the whole ugly situation, who’s now eaten up with guilt for not having protected Tyler.
Okay – and here’s where it gets REALLY interesting. Mystery Man called Maxine’s burner 14 seconds before Oliver’s wide wasn’t called. MM had been watching the odds, Maxine signaled Oliver from the stands, and then the umpire didn’t call what he technically should have (because it actually was a wide ball), and that’s when the faeces hit the fan. So there’s an immediate warrant out to ‘get Maxine’… And oh so very sexiness – Bianca and Janet are raiding together! It’s not just the sweetness of their domesticity that is adorable, but being tough and busting in to make an arrest is just plain awesomeness! The house is in disarray, there are papers strewn everywhere, furniture upturned, a smashed wine bottle on the carpet, half eaten dinner on the kitchen bench… but no Maxine!
Ok, so the screen cap is blurry, BUT JUST LOOK AT THE HOTNESS!
Where has she gone?