IP Addresses and Pig Farms
Acosta arrives to look at Emma’s computer, explaining that “Riley’s” emails are coming from her IP address. This knowledge, coupled with the articles in the motel room, weird phone calls, and fairground events (way to blow up Emma’s spot with Maggie, Kieran) lead Acosta to believe that someone is targeting Emma. Maggie encourages Emma to talk about Troy James’ pig farm and the mysterious man she saw there.
Emma confronts Kieran about her computer and being Acosta’s informant. He’d rather her be mad and alive than dead, so he has no regrets. She still feels betrayed. Meanwhile, Acosta investigates Troy James’ pig farm and finds a photo of tiny Emma and a man whose face has been cut out of the picture. Acosta uses this as proof to show Maggie that Emma is once again at the center of a very dangerous situation.
A Love Connection
Zoe asks Noah out, bringing him to the lake to hang out and make out. Noah explains that he has a love-hate relationship with this particular body of water, while Zoe explains that his podcast was the best way for her to understand what they went through last season. Or obsessively follow the Lakewood Six? You decide. She reveals that she’s lying about where she was in the fall; her loneliness caused her to do “something stupid,” so her mother got her a therapist and exempt from school for a month.
Audrey calls, but Noah has committed to giving Zoe his undivided attention. After some making out at the lake, they decide to take things to Noah’s parentless house later that evening. This is why we’re gifted with the hilariously awkward scene in which Noah buys condoms from an inappropriate clerk. He once again ignores a call from Audrey. Honestly, if I were Audrey, I would be freaking out if Noah didn’t respond to my phone call as well–it’s not like they don’t have an active serial killing in their midst.
An Unlikely Pairing
“I think I may have messed up…hey, you’re dark! In a good way! Maybe you would understand,” Brooke says to Audrey. She explains threatening and leaving Branson, which spurs Audrey into action. The girls head over to the hotel, which is when Noah ignores Audrey’s call. “Hey Foster–if anything happens to me, it probably has something to do with Seth Branson. I’ll explain later,” she informs his voicemail in the most casual way possible. Unfortunately, Branson is nowhere to be found; the hotel room in pristine condition, with only the sleep mask and Branson’s watch left behind. They grab them, but they don’t notice the tiny camera watching their every move.
Audrey isn’t as worried as Brooke–after all, Branson’s reputation is far from spotless, considering his statutory rape allegations. “This town always believes the worst about my family and this happens to be true,” Brooke points out, playing Devil’s advocate. Brooke talks about how lying only makes things worse, inspiring Audrey to leave Emma a voicemail so she can come clean about her Piper connection. She then receives a killer text: “Hey Killer! Come to the school alone or your friend gets this. What will she think?” It’s the video of Audrey with Jake’s body. This whole bonding experience might be for naught.
A Killer Accident
Psychology teacher Ms. Lang apologizes to Emma for locking her in an office during the school lockdown. She pleads with her to get help, even if it’s not from her. I’d like to plead with Emma to specifically avoid Ms. Lang, because she’s not a clinical psychologist and she’s clearly obsessed with her. Also she has shady motivations, but whatever. Speaking of shady, Lang’s next scene shows her in her office listening to their recorded conversation. She has a drawer full of tapes featuring recordings of the Lakewood Six, along with detailed files on each one.
“My attempts to build a relationship with Emma are hindered by her clear instability,” Lang records. Or, she is super suspicious of how obsessed you are with her? Lang’s musings are interrupted by this episode’s killer call! “You seem to take a real interest in your students, don’t you? No wonder you like Seth Branson,” the Killer says. Listen, they’re a homicidal maniac, but I’m for just about anyone throwing shade at teachers who pursue relationships with their underage students. Especially a smarmy douche like Branson. “He’s waiting for you out in the hall, Kristen. Don’t worry–he’s not ‘handsy’ anymore.” Ha! This Killer is such a card.
Lang finds nothing in the hallway and returns to her office to find it ransacked. I’m impressed that she makes the smart choice and tries to immediately run for it, though sadly she runs directly into the Killer, who waves Branson’s dislodged hand at her. Lol, Killer. She fights them off pretty well and runs into Branson’s bloody form in the hallway. He tells her to run for it, then gets stabbed for his trouble. Lang makes it to the staircase, where the Killer throws her over the bannister and she ends up in a pool of her own blood. Yikes.
Outside, Audrey is frantically searching for a way to keep Brooke outside of the school. “He’s not going to mess with me! And besides, I’m not wearing heels, so I can run faster if he turns out to be mental!” That’s not the worst point. Brooke caves–for now–and Audrey walks in yelling, “Are you here, ya dick?” So flippant, so great. Instead of the Killer, Audrey is met with the janitor, who explains how he found Ms. Lang and that he’s called the police. Brooke comes in and freaks out, causing Audrey to panic about something completely unrelated to the near-dead body in front of her.
Zoe and Noah are recording “The Zoe Files” on his podcast equipment before they start making out. Zoe interrupts to ask Noah to get her “an adult beverage” so she can secretly listen to the file marked “AUDREY” (featuring her confession) on his computer’s desktop. Why can’t she just say something normal like “beer,” or “wine,” or the more general “booze”? She emails the file–but to who? They resume making out in his bed, tearing at each other’s clothes. Enter Audrey, who desperately needs to talk to Noah. I’m impressed by how she holds her ground, waiting out the awkward moment until Zoe opts to leave. “Someone better be dead,” Noah bites out, before remembering what show he’s on and turning pale. “Wait, is someone dead?”
Audrey explains the situation with Lang and the Killer’s texts. Noah upbraids her for going into that situation alone, rightly so. Audrey’s theory is that the Killer didn’t want to hurt her, but put her in a situation where she would look very guilty.
Eli and Emma: Love Connection?
Emma busts into the coffeehouse and immediately complains to Eli about his cousin. Eli explains that Kieran keeps things so close to the chest because he never got along with his stepfather. In fact, he was in a huge fight with his stepfather the day that his mother and stepfather died in a car accident, something for which he’s never forgiven himself. Oh, and then his father died horrifically at the hands of a homicidal maniac, so that’s also probably contributing to his “overprotectiveness.” Sorry, I’m with Kieran on this one. Eli suggests that they go out and have some fun that night, to get away from it all.
Eli takes Emma and a whole bunch of Chinese food to a model home. When Eli gets sick of his own life, he makes up other ones for himself, which occasionally leads to breaking into houses. He calls it “Goldilocksing,” which I have to admit is kind of clever. Cut to upstairs, where the bloody dead bodies of Eddie and Branson are chilling in a bathtub, surrounded by car air fresheners. You guys, I just don’t think a few air fresheners would cut it here.
Eli says that Kieran is a totally different person in Lakewood, one who cast Emma in the role of “perfect girlfriend” when they started dating. This is lazy manipulation, Eli. He tries to kiss her, but Emma stops him because she still loves Kieran. Good. The smoke detectors go off, because unbeknownst to them, the entire area around the house has been set ablaze. Emma and Eli escape through the garage. Emma wants to call the fire department, but Eli can’t because he has a record. Side note: surprise! Branson wasn’t dead, just unconscious. Sadly, he woke up just in time to be horrifically burned alive in the house next to a days-gone dead body. Womp.
The best way to shake things up on a TV show is to create new pairings, which is proven by this episode of Scream. Pairing off Noah/Zoe, Eli/Emma, and Brooke/Audrey made for fresher dialogue and quicker plot propulsion. With how much action was set into motion this week, I can’t wait to see the horrible surprises the Lakewood Five is in for next week.
Best Line: “Here I am…alone…waiting for a girl…at a lake…that’s never gone bad for anyone in a movie ever,” Noah says, waiting for Zoe to change into her bathing suit at the lake.
Killer Calls: 1
Body Count Per Episode: 1 (I’m going to assume that Branson isn’t going to make it out of that fire)
Body Count Per Season: 3
Episode Rating: 8/10