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'Unforgotten' Recap: Season 5 Episode 3

Daniel Hautzinger
Ebele looks up at someone
Ebele's relationship with her daughter Precious was difficult and contentious. Credit: Mainstreet Productions

Unforgotten airs Sundays at 8:00 pm and is available to stream on the PBS app and Recap the previous and following episodes and previous four seasons.
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Precious Falade and her estranged family all had plenty of issues. Her son Joseph, born in 1998 in Wales, has a criminal record and did six months in juvy. Her mother Ebele has multiple alcohol-related arrests before 2016 as well as a firearm charge against a stockbroker’s doorman in 1986. While the detectives have not located Joseph, Ebele is coming down to London from Bath to see her daughter’s body and has agreed to an interview with the police.

She says that she checked her diaries and that she last saw Precious in January of 2016, on her daughter’s birthday. Precious was homeless at the time, and Joseph had stayed in Wales. Ebele cut Precious off at that meeting, having tried to help numerous times. She had decided that she needed to focus on her own issues with alcohol. 

Precious moved to Wales when she was 15 to be a part of a cult called Family of Blessed Light. At the time, she said she wanted to go; later in life, she said she was abducted. She was pregnant when she went to Wales—Ebele thinks the cult leader David Bell, whom Precious eventually became afraid of, was the father, even though he was 42 at the time. Precious spent some fifteen years living in Wales on and off, occasionally returning to London but failing to support herself and eventually going back to Wales and the cult. Joseph was raised between the cult and social care. 

Ebele refuses to discuss her firearms charge. 

She also doesn’t share that Precious had Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, as one of Precious’ social workers tells Fran. It was arguably the cause of many of her issues. Ebele refused to accept the diagnosis; it seemed to make her and Precious angry towards each other all the time. They even physically fought, but the social worker doesn’t recall Precious ever being violent on her own and thinks Ebele was the instigator. 

Karol Wojski was once a social worker. He covered for a coworker while she was on maternity leave and took Precious’ last appointment, at the end of June, 2016. The detectives suspect Precious was killed sometime around then, because the plasterboard covering the fireplace where her body was hidden had patches filled with newspaper from July 12, 2016. The plasterboard itself is all from the 1960s, suggesting that it was reused—which is odd, given its cheapness. Perhaps the person who put it up didn’t have money—and didn’t want to leave a trace by buying plasterboard somewhere.

There is also a good deal of blood soaked into the floorboards and smearing towards the fireplace. Someone tried to clean it, but it had already infiltrated the wood.

Karol’s notes on his final appointment with Precious are brief: son wants her to go back to sex work, mother assaulted her, Precious wants to go to rehab. The notes should have been more detailed, but Karol resigned the next day, and moved to another country soon after.

He’s now in Paris, where he has been arguing with his girlfriend Elise over money. She needs it to fight for full custody of her daughters; he wants it to buy a bigger place with her so they can have their own kid. He argues with her at the restaurant where she works, asking if she thinks he’s an “untermensch” (below human), to her horror, before leaving.

At work stocking packages at the airport, he pockets an expensive watch.

Stealing has led to Jay Royce’s arrest. The police have plenty of evidence against him for stealing a woman’s handbag and using her debit card. He replies “No comment” to every question, but is given pause when the policeman reveals the woman nearly lost her baby when he knocked her down. 

Jay’s public defender wants to fight for bail, but the policeman says it won’t be granted with such a straightforward case. Jay asks the defender to send his social worker to check on his girlfriend Cheryl, but when the lawyer knocks at her door another man answers and tells him to let Jay know Cheryl is fine. I’m looking after her now, he says before closing the door.

Sunny might need some looking after: he tells the coroner Dr. Balcombe that he worries Cassie’s death was his fault, but Balcombe assures him it wasn’t—and that he’s not the only one still caught up on it. He admits that he hasn’t talked about the death with his wife, Sal.

He’s been distant from Sal, who’s not happy when he gets on a train to Paris to interview Karol, per Jess’s orders. Sal thinks she’s miscarrying, but Sunny is on the train and the call drops as she tells him. Once he arrives in Paris, he can’t get in touch with her. 

Sunny complained about Jess to her boss, telling him that she’s distracted and rude—she snapped at him and his team for no reason, even if she did eventually apologize. She’s trying to find time to meet her sister, Debbie, to talk about her husband’s cheating, but Debbie is busy—and Jess has to cancel their meeting last minute to interview someone about the case.

That someone is Lord Anthony Hume, a Tory politician infamous for cutting social services. While he now volunteers, he still has not been forgiven for his politics: when he visits the family of a Somalian boy whom he met at a youth club to offer financial assistance, the mother rejects him on account of his earlier policies that she says have hurt her community. I suspect it would be more for your benefit than ours, she says. 

Tony is connected to Precious because he is a relative of the late homeowner of the house in which Precious’s body was found. (The “LA” logged in lawyer’s calls about the home is Lord Anthony.) The homeowner was the younger sister of his wife, Emma. 

Tony explains to Jess that he saw three men and two women squatting in the house, and that they were hostile, physically threatening, and looked like addicts who might do anything. (A neighbor of the house told the police that the squatters were harmless and sweet.) He gave them 500 quid to get them out of the house, not wanting a protracted legal battle, then sent a locksmith later that day. The house was in bad shape when the squatters left.

Notes show that it took him five weeks to bring the new keys to the lawyers overseeing the house. He says he must have been busy. He also claims not to recognize Precious. 

Once Jess leaves, Tony leaves a voicemail for someone. “What did you do?” he says. “Call me.”

Ebele’s cook and partner Dave is worried about her, especially since they have an investor meeting the next day. She ignores his phone call and walks toward a pub.

Jay has his own phone call to make, from prison. “You don’t know me, but I know you,” he says. “My mother was Precious Falade and I was there that night… I saw it all.”