'Annika' Recap: Season 2 Episode 2
October 22, 2023
Morgan has borrowed a tent from Michael for a school trip in the woods, but neither of the pair know that they are daughter and father. It’s raining the whole trip, and Morgan’s friend Femi is so miserable she almost leaves, but Morgan convinces her to go whitewater kayaking with her. Femi enjoys herself until she falls off into the river. Morgan jumps in and pulls her to shore.
No one saved Jemma Kerr from drowning; in fact, they ensured it would happen by putting her in a cage. Jemma was unconscious before she drowned, and has black paint under her fingernails from scratching at the painted cage. There are tire marks near where the cage was found, and a white van was seen driving erratically nearby, but it can’t be identified.
Jemma only just escaped another cage: she was released from prison days ago, after serving five years of a six-year term for killing a man while driving drunk. She was dropped off at a halfway house by her probation officer after being released with 70 pounds, then missed all her appointments at the home.
Her only family left is her father Bruce; her mother died while she was in prison. Bruce says he didn’t pick Jemma up from prison because he can’t drive. She called him drunk from a hotel to set up a meeting but didn’t show up.
The phone call is traced to a posh hotel in Edinburgh, where Jemma is booked in the penthouse. She cancelled all cleaning of her room.
Perhaps that’s because it’s trashed and full of wine bottles. When Tyrone and Annika go inside, a hotel employee tries to dash out but is caught by Tyrone after a brief scuffle in the kitchen.
The employee is a bartender. He sometimes snuck into the rooms of guests he had served who were rude and obviously rich to steal some money. That’s why he was in Jemma’s room. She was angry when he served her, and he fleeced her room later. He came back because she had a bag full of cash – some twenty thousand pounds, as the detectives discover.
Jemma’s digs at the halfway house are much starker, and untouched. She seems to have left as soon as she got there. But there’s blood on her door handle, and on that of her neighbor’s. Inside his room are numerous dog cages.
The room’s occupant, Billy Gleeson, explains that the cages are for the dogs he watches to make some money. One of them bit him, so he was bleeding when he went into Jemma’s room after she left to see if there was anything to take. He suggests the detectives look into the white van that followed her. It had “Stand” written on its side.
Harper Weston, the Edinburgh cop assigned to assist Annika’s team, helps the detectives narrow down businesses to which the van could belong. One of them is a comedy club. The detectives find a woman setting up a show there when they arrive. She cuts the lights and flees in a white van, but accidentally backs up into the car Annika just parked. (It’s her boss’s.)
The woman fled because she is the sister of the man Jemma killed in her car. Amara was notified when her brother’s killer was released. She wanted closure, and so went to see where Jemma was living in the hopes that it wasn’t nice. She then got sucked in and followed Jemma to the train station. Jemma came out with a bag, then went to the posh hotel. But Amara didn’t kill her; she was working at the comedy club that night.
Because the case is in Edinburgh, Annika is staying in a hotel. She gets warily excited when her father calls while she is talking to Tyrone about his undecided feelings about applying for a transfer in order to move up in rank. Annika’s relationship to her father is difficult, but she always hopes it will improve. But the phone call is just a pocket dial, not some overture.
Michael is much better with his kids. He’s driving home every night, and brings one of the dogs Billy Gleeson is watching because he doesn’t trust Billy. One of Michael’s daughters sees the dog and thinks it’s for her. When Michael tracks down the dog’s owner, they’re worse than Billy – so Michael and his family might have a new dog after all.
Blair has a child coming – she’s pregnant – and we learn that she grew up in Edinburgh, getting kicked out of one school for hacking computers and another for trespassing.
She traces a portion of a luggage tag on the bag full of cash found in Jemma’s penthouse to a Jason Craig. His wife Briony answers the door with her toddler when the detectives arrive. Jason has been overseas for a week, but Briony admits to giving the money to Jemma. They’re old friends, and Briony has done well for herself running an art gallery. She gave Jemma the money so she wouldn’t have to stay with her father, Bruce, who is abusive. He even hit Briony once, as well as Jemma while visiting her in prison.
Bruce was banned from the prison for his violence, and he was removed from the court’s sentencing of Jemma for shouting that she had brought shame on their family. He almost his job because of the ignominy, he tells the detectives, and was especially incensed that Jemma was driving his car at the time. (He lied about not being able to drive.)
He says Jemma’s “stuck-up” friend convinced Jemma to take the car. The friend was supposedly dropped off before the fatal accident occurred. Amara said Jemma looked “noble” in court when she accepted her sentence – perhaps she was taking the fall for someone.
CCTV at the train station shows that the encounter between Briony and Jemma was less amiable than Briony said – she is the person Jemma was angry at while drinking in the hotel. And Briony wasn’t home the night Jemma was killed, as she claimed: a delivery person dropped off a package and said the house was empty. Cameras show Jemma was near Briony’s gallery the afternoon she was killed.
An artwork featuring a painted cage listed in the gallery’s catalog is missing. Briony appears holding another artwork: a real rifle, painted. Annika doesn’t think it’s actually loaded, and talks to Briony.
Briony was the one driving when Amara’s brother was killed. Jemma took the blame, and Briony promised to make it up to her, hence the money. But Jemma had become a different person, more like her father, and demanded more money. She visited Briony’s gallery and even threatened Briony’s son, who was there. Briony pushed her down the stairs. She thought Jemma was dead, and put her in the cage to dump the body in the water.
Annika has finally decided to tell Michael he’s Morgan’s father. She starts to while they sit at the comedy club, but he has a surprise for her: he has signed her up for an open mic, so she can prove she’s funny. She bombs, but then decides to tell a “joke” laying out Michael’s relationship to Morgan. He gets up and leaves when she sits back down with him.