• Stella Gibson (Gillian Anderson) in The Fall, series 2, episode 4. (File)Source: File
The hunt continues in "Strangler", episode 4 in series 2 of The Fall...
By
Gavin Scott

4 Dec 2015 - 3:44 PM  UPDATED 9 Dec 2015 - 12:12 PM

The police know he’s the killer, but Paul Spector (Jamie Dornan) is still running around Belfast, dodging calls from his wife and obsessing over what he found in Stella Gibson’s (Gillian Anderson) hotel room. So why haven’t the cops swooped in and arrested him? 

Well, there’s the small matter of Rose Stagg (Valene Kane), whose whereabouts are unknown. The hope is that Paul will lead them to her – but although all manner of electronic devices are in play, this case isn’t about to be wrapped up any time soon. There are, after all, two more episodes left after this one…

 

Laptops

While Gibson’s laptop has been taken into evidence following Paul’s visit to her hotel, Paul uses his computer to store the photos he took in Gibson’s room.  Yep, he’s obsessed.

While he’s kicking back in his own cheap hotel room, wearing nothing but a bath towel, he also takes the opportunity to check out some of Katie’s (Aisling Franciosi) godawful YouTube clips.

The skanky babysitter has her own footage of Paul to keep her warm at night – she stored a clip of him from one of their sneaky video chat sessions on her phone. She also waits by her laptop for Paul to show up online for more saucy webcam sessions. Privacy laws be damned – couldn’t the police have tracked Paul by now using Katie’s computer?

 

Phones

“Why is your phone always off?” Sally-Ann (Bronagh Waugh) demands when she calls Paul for the umpteenth time. Well, he’s not so stupid as to wander around letting himself be traced.

He is, however, foolish enough to try and pay survivor Annie Brawley (Karen Hassan) another visit in hospital. Sally-Ann is there to confront him about his absence from their kids’ lives. She really should be thanking her lucky stars that Paul isn’t around to mess his children up anymore – his daughter’s already drawing worrying pictures.

Thanks to a phone call of her own, Gibson discovers the crucial piece of information that Paul had visited Annie previously under the guise of his day job as a bereavement counsellor. She and a bunch of cops equipped with in-ear communication devices lie in wait for him at the hospital. Gibson prefers to get updates on her mobile.

 

Surveillance

The surveillance team has kept itself busy tailing both Katie and Sally-Ann. Things kick into high gear when Paul surfaces at the hospital and officers follow him as he leaves with Sally-Ann.

A triumphant Gibson (well, as triumphant as emotional vacuum Gibson gets) calls Burns (John Lynch): “We have him, Jim.” The ever-reliable king of exposition reminds us why Paul still hasn’t been taken into custody, stating the obvious, “We mustn’t lose him, Stella. Under no circumstances. If we’re letting him run in the hopes he leads us to Rose, we must not lose him.” Got that, everyone?

The team gets the go ahead to step up their surveillance, going into the Spector house and installing cameras and other equipment. One doofus falls through the ceiling above Paul and Sally’s bedroom, requiring the crack unit to flood the house and make it look like a water tank burst. Subtle, guys. Real subtle.

 

Live broadcast

When a body is found matching Rose’s description, Gibson attends the scene and runs into TV’s Merlin. OK, he’s actually a police officer called Tom Anderson in The Fall, but it’s hard to see actor Colin Morgan in any other role.

In between setting her sights on Anderson – both in a professional and, no doubt, a personal capacity – Gibson decides to use the death as a ploy. Through a live broadcast from the site, the police let the media believe that they’ve found Rose Stagg’s remains. If Paul sees the broadcast, could it spur him into action and force him to reveal what he’s actually done with Rose?

Seems not, with the episode ending where it began – with a waiting game.

 

Watch episode 4 here. The Fall returns Thursday, 10 December at 9:30pm (AEDT) on SBS.

 

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