The mystery of Sarah Keaton’s death has seeped its way into every episode of Notorious thus far, and now that it’s over, I already feel somewhat lost. The first six episodes were built around this mystery, and then it just…ends?! I guess that’s how story lines work, but somehow it felt like this arc was going to last forever, as if it was the backbone of the show. Maybe I’m wrong to think this, but I’m fairly confident Notorious is going to be an entirely different show without the mystery of Sarah’s murder hanging over everyone’s heads.
Tonight’s episode begins three days after Jake was arrested live on air, and we see he’s really on his best behavior and ditching ‘county’ arrest while leading cops in an O.J.-style pursuit. I wonder if “Where were you when Jake Gregorian lead the police in a slow-speed chase?” will stick for future generations.
Meanwhile, 48 hours earlier, D.A. Max announces the murder charges against Oscar Keaton have been dropped — you know, because they’ve moved on to Jake. “There’s a special place in hell for a man like you,” Oscar says about his former attorney/Eskimo brother in a public statement.
Of course, Julia’s upset about her dear friend being accused of murder. She firmly believes he’s innocent and even lets him crash on her couch. (Side note: Shout-out to Julia for having nothing but wine in her fridge. That’s my girl). Even though she’s not exactly thrilled Max ambushed her buddy Jake on live TV, the girl has needs and agrees to go out with Max. They flirt, they laugh, and eventually, he drops the bomb that he’s making an exclusive offer to Callie Connors (remember her?) to appear on her show. Without much argument, however, he quickly changes his mind and agrees to come on LHL instead, as long as his forensic psychologist can appear. Not sure why he didn’t just ask Julia to do this in the first place, but what do I know? Maybe he likes playing hard to get.
Meanwhile, Ella and Bradley are on the case since Jake can’t exactly be his own client. I’m not quite sure what happened to the Ella and Ryan thing that was cooking a few weeks ago, but I’m disappointed he’s not there to be the Fred to her Daphne this week. Did he stop calling her after they slept together? Has she been listening nonstop to Adele’s 21 ever since episode 4? These are the important facts I need to know! Less important to me is the fact Ella’s managed to track down a mysterious fellow named Axel who issued Sarah her fake passport. He says he recalls Sarah making a phone call and angrily telling someone named Brian he would never hurt her again. I’m sorry, WHO?
Ella is just as confused, so she and Bradley pay a visit to Donnie, Sarah’s loan shark. Now, you may be wondering why Sarah had a loan shark to whom she was paying $10,000 a month. Luckily, Donnie clears this one up pretty quickly: She was paying off gambling debts belonging to her brother, Alan. Sure, Alan was always a little weird, but this is definitely an unexpected development.
To make matters even more confusing, Ella also discovers that last month, Sarah wired someone named Brian $100,000 through a sham account. Jake does a little Internet stalking and discovers the guy was in the military and went by the name “Bloody Ripper.” (Okay, writers, I’m definitely taking the hint that I’m supposed to think this guy is dangerous.)
Jake, of course, feels the need to track down this Brian fellow (he loved Sarah! He must avenge her!) but he’s stuck with a ticking ankle bracelet that prevents him from leaving the county. And, of course, Brian does not live in the county. But for Sarah, he’ll do anything… Even break the law! Jake sheds his bracelet and heads off to San Diego, where he finds Brian, his wife, and their juice-box-drinking, soccer-playing daughter living happily ever after in a picture-perfect home, complete with a white picket fence. Could Sarah’s killer really have such an ideal family life?
Despite a couple of white lies to get himself in the door, Jake thinks he has Brian fooled — until Brian pulls out a gun and tells him, “I know who you are and what you’re doing here.” To be honest, this to-the-point strategy seems to work out better for Jake, anyway. He asks how Brian knew Sarah, and Brian admits the money Sarah sent wasn’t for him, but for his daughter, Zoey — whom he adopted several years ago from Sarah! But wait, didn’t Alan say Sarah’s biological child had died? Oh Alan, you’re getting shadier by the minute. Brian says Sarah contributed the money for Zoey’s college fund. On his way out, Jake snags the juice box Zoey was drinking from and eventually sends it to Julia for DNA testing, thinking perhaps it was one of their romantic nights in Barcelona that resulted in Zoey.
NEXT: The plot thickens