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'Guilt' Recap: Season 3 Episode 4

Daniel Hautzinger
Max looks angrily at Jake
Max and Jake execute their final plans. Credit: Expectation, Happy Tramp North, BBC, and Masterpiece

Guilt is available to stream. Recap the previous episode and previous seasons.
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Aliza wakes up in Skye’s mom’s flat. She fled her hotel with Skye and Danny not to escape Maggie Lynch’s goons but because she has lost access to a room full of documents relating to the upcoming sale of the National Bank of Caledonia, and Skye showed her that she had photos of some of them. Aliza still wants to derail the fraudulent sale, and so asks Skye and Danny to take her to whomever is in charge.

Max is busy meeting with Yvonne, thanks to his rescuer, Stevie. Max offers Yvonne evidence that Maggie has conspired to commit murder in exchange for Roy Lynch’s phone data showing contacts between Roy and Sir Jim Sturrock of the National Bank, but Yvonne doesn’t want to do things illegally. She asks Max where Kenny is – he didn’t come home last night. Max doesn’t know.

Unable to conduct business with Yvonne, Max returns to Sheila’s house and tries to do so with Aliza, whom Danny and Skye have brought over. Max won’t let Aliza stop the sale because he needs it to go through so that Jim can pay him out of the proceeds. He’ll keep Aliza at Sheila’s unless she can come up with a way to move forward that will make them both happy.

Kenny is in a coma in the hospital, thanks to Teddy. Skye is visiting with her mom when she sees Yvonne, and goes to talk to her – they have both recognized each other. Skye says she’s going to seek revenge on Maggie for Kenny’s beating, but Yvonne tells her she can’t – Kenny wouldn’t want Skye to get hurt. Yvonne will take Maggie down.

When Kenny wakes up, he has had an “epiphany.” Yvonne should work with him at his small legal firm, so she can get out of the police. But Yvonne says she’s not out yet – she still has things to do. Kenny refuses to tell her who beat him up, so she says she’ll go straight for Maggie. Kenny worries that she’ll compromise her morals to do so.

Max has brought Jake to Kenny’s legal firm, in order to look for some paperwork that will help protect them. Jake is appalled that Max won’t visit Kenny in the hospital, when he’s the reason Kenny is hurt.

But Max himself has a visitor at the office: his old flame, Erin, Maggie’s daughter whom Max helped extricate from Edinburgh and the crimes of her family. She’s living in Dundee now, but Maggie called her to Edinburgh because Maggie is leaving and might never see Erin again. During their meeting, Maggie seemingly innocently let slip that Max was back in Edinburgh.

So Erin has written a letter for Max that she was going to drop off at the legal firm, not expecting to find Max himself there. Jake goes for a walk outside and Erin thanks Max for saving her. He admits that he’s a different person around her, and asks where to find her when he’s ready to fully become that person.

But then he realizes that Maggie has used Erin to lead her to Max, just as Jake runs in saying they need to go. The McCalls tear out the back door and duck into a hiding place, barely eluding Maggie’s goons. And then Max gets a call from Aliza: she has figured out a way where they can both get what they want.

Aliza won’t derail the sale of the bank so that Max can get his money from Jim, while Aliza will demand in exchange from Jim that her corrupt boss Richard be fired, and she get his position. Max meets with Jim and tells him that he has Aliza and she won’t scuttle the sale; he hands over the paperwork he grabbed from Kenny’s office and tells Jim to wire two million pounds to that account when the deal goes through.

But Jim has his own plan. He calls Maggie, who was supposed to deal with Aliza, and tells her Max has done so instead. Jim doesn’t need Maggie – but he will still give Max and Aliza to her, as a goodwill offering. He had Max followed, and knows he’s at Sheila’s.

Sheila also has a plan. She has negotiated with Jake to get the money from Jim for themselves. How? Jake can testify against Max for violating parole and laundering money for Roy Lynch, so he and Sheila can blackmail Max into giving them the money.

Except that Max anticipated this and warned Jake, who has been playing Sheila and thus distracting her from interfering more drastically in Max’s plans. Max pays Sheila a pittance instead of the large sum she asked for in return for letting them stay with her, and leaves Stevie to watch over her while he, Jake, and Aliza finish their plan.

They leave just in time. Sheila hides at a violent knock on the front door. Maggie’s goons have arrived, thanks to Jim’s intelligence. Stevie himself has tried to enact his own plan, by trying to contact Maggie from Sheila’s house to say that Jake and Max were there, in exchange for letting him off the hook – but she didn’t need Stevie. Her henchmen kill Stevie, roll him up in a rug, and leave. Sheila emerges unscathed and unseen to slink away from her newly bloodstained house.

Jim is therefore surprised to see Aliza and Max visit him alive and well and not in Maggie’s grasp. He shrugs and accepts their terms. The sale goes through, and he gives Max paper confirmation that he has transferred the two million to him. Aliza is not so lucky: Jim has conspired with Richard to fire her, after doing a better job of hiding the debt on which the bank stands. 

Except Aliza anticipated this. She shorted the stock and has released the documents revealing the debt to the press. The share price is tumbling – and she’s getting rich.

What about Maggie? She, too, has been taken down. Teddy visited Kenny at the hospital, telling him he wanted to escape this cycle of violence. Kenny offered him both forgiveness and a way out that will also give them both some sweet revenge: he sent him to Yvonne.

Seeing Teddy’s bruised knuckles, Yvonne put two and two together – but accepted the evidence offered her by the man who put her boyfriend in a coma. Teddy, on behest of Max, recorded all his interactions with Maggie since he teamed up with the McCalls, and therefore has her admitting she offered Teddy money to kill the brothers. Teddy will go into witness protection, as he tells his father, who had been using Teddy’s connections to the Lynches to intimidate people into buying him drinks.

Yvonne goes to arrest Maggie with a measly two police officers – but they’re all she needs. Maggie scoffs at her: Teddy is a psychopath whose testimony won’t matter. But Yvonne says he’s just the first – plenty of other people in prison who have worked for the Lynches will follow, now that Maggie’s vulnerability has been proven. Plus, Yvonne has Maggie’s own voice admitting to conspiracy to murder – which also proves that Maggie is cogent, so she can’t use pretended dementia to avoid charges again.

Maggie doesn’t have anyone on her side anymore: her two hired henchmen will abandon her as quickly as they joined her. Even the powerful people in Edinburgh over whom Maggie has influence won’t help. Yvonne used Roy’s phone data to scope out his connections and call them before arresting Maggie, threatening to reveal that they had worked with the Lynches. None of them will interfere now. Maggie is finally going to jail.

There’s one last person with a plan, who has outdone everyone else. Jake asks Max to meet him in a cemetery after the bank sale goes through.

While the McCalls were at Kenny’s office, Jake realized that Max was going to use a bank account associated with Kenny’s firm to receive Jim’s money – it was already set up and had Max’s name on it, from when he was Kenny’s partner. So Jake grabbed the keys to the office from Max’s coat when he wasn’t around and snuck in while Max was dealing with Jim. That allowed him to redirect the money from Jim to himself – only after paying Skye, Danny, and Kenny, whom Jake also visited in order to apologize for the beating he endured on the McCalls’ behalf. Max won’t be getting any of the money.

But Jake is doing this out of love. He forgives Max for everything he has done, and tells him he’s trying to help him become a better person. He hands Max the letter from Erin, left in Kenny’s office when they fled Maggie’s goons. Max can start a new life with her.

Off Jake flies to Berlin with his new fortune. Skye and Danny have already left Edinburgh. Yvonne and Kenny have a fresh start ahead of them. That leaves only Max.

He shows up at Erin’s home in Dundee. She welcomes him in. He’s shocked to hear a baby crying – perhaps it is even his. As he looks toward the crying, his horror resolves to something like determination.