Just two episodes left and we have to wonder… Are we really going to pull this off here? Can The Missing neatly tie up a season’s worth of subplots and intrigues into a satisfying and plausible resolution, without rushing or cutting corners? Will the final two hours give justice to the mystery that started it all? And will we see Ollie again? By the end of “Return to Eden,” the penultimate episode in the miniseries, you’ll feel even more doubtful of this than ever—and grateful that there’s just one more week of head scratching left. “Return to Eden” is one of the best episodes—not because it brings us closer to solving Ollie’s disappearance, but because it offers both elegant character studies and meditations of the The Missing‘s central theme: the desperation of parents who’ve lost their children.
At the end of last week, we witnessed the crime that put Ziane in prison. He beat up Baptiste—permanently damaging his leg and giving him his signature limp—trying to keep the file revealing his true identity as the murderer J’ean Martin out of the detective’s hands. (Suri had sent it to Baptiste.) We open at Ziane’s prison in present-day France, where Baptiste, Tony, and Emily visit him confidently armed with the sole but crucial shred of knowledge that the manipulative weasel by the name of Karl Sieg revealed for the sum of 15,000 euro. He witnessed Ziane bag a piece of evidence at the scene of Ollie’s disappearance that he never filed with the police.
Tony and Emily plead with him. “What did you take? It takes you nothing to tell us, and it means everything to us!” In a turn of cruel irony, though, Ziane refuses to tell them a thing until they bring his estranged son to see him. Ziane is being selfish and sadistic here, yes. But in another sense, isn’t he just a father, using the only leverage he has in his marginalized position, to see his own son—who has effectively disappeared from his life as well? His son wasn’t kidnapped, but Ziane is, not entirely unlike Tony, a man willing to do anything for his son, including withholding information that could help the Hughes find Oliver.
Elsewhere, big trouble: Tony gets a call from Malik Suri, who never bears good news. He claims he knows what happened to Ollie: Ian Garrett did it. But, as much of a creep though he may be, he has a rock-solid alibi. What’s Suri getting at? Tony argues that Garrett was cleared by the police. “But you didn’t know that when you killed him, did you Mr. Hughes?” Oh s–t. So somehow—in part because of Vincent Bourg’s testimonies about Tony’s violent criminal behavior—Suri knows that Tony killed Garrett, even though he destroyed the single remaining piece of evidence, his bloodied shirt. (Only later in the episode is it revealed that Suri hacked Tony’s voicemail and heard Emily refer to “what he did to Ian Garrett.”)
In typical Suri style, he plans to blackmail Tony into giving him the scoop. Whether he does or not, Suri is going to go to the press with both components of his newly concocted story—that Garrett killed Ollie, and Tony killed Garrett. Okay, so he’s half right. He acts like he’s doing Tony a favor by giving him a chance to defend himself against the murder allegations that Suri is going to levy against him. “Any parent in your position… People will understand,” he teases. “But only if you tell your side of the story.” Now we’ve got this ticking time bomb, as it’s just a matter of time before Suri publishes the story.
NEXT: Another boy disappears in Chalons du Bois.