Maggie's true Brandon James connection is revealed and the killer takes another potential victim.
You know how people try to analyze their dreams? Well how the hell do we analyze what on earth we just saw in Emma’s dream? Clearly the killer’s game is getting to Emma and she must still be feeling guilt over the deaths of her friends. But it’s a new day in Lakewood and there’s isn’t much time for psychoanalysis right now—another murder could happen at any minute.
This is the second week in a row that’s been low on the blood and gore count. No new murders have occurred, though by the episode’s end we see the killer take home a little victim doggie bag, and leave Piper to watch the events of Will’s abduction unfold. Emma wakes up to find her newest squeeze’s father about to do the walk of shame after a night with her mother. Maggie looks uncomfortable at Emma catching the aftermath of her lucky night, but Emma says that she’s the one who told Maggie to go for it. I’m glad Emma is happy about her mom being happy but is she really not at least a little weirded out by familial love connections going on here? Is this going to be Dan and Serena from Gossip Girl all over again? Oof, I hope not.
While Emma is out taking a new lover, her old one is making a few deals to clear his currently not-so-good name. Will talks to Piper at the coffee shop while waiting for Emma to arrive and the podcaster convinces Will to come on her show and reveal some juicy Nina stories while taking responsibility for his sleazy actions. I’m not really down with the slut-shaming going on regarding Nina in this scene; it’s not fair to let Will off by saying Nina convinced him to do things he didn’t really want to do. Or maybe I’m over-exaggerating? We still don’t know firsthand how Nina manipulated people (despite hearing stories about it) since she died about five seconds after being introduced. Will seems the slightest bit anxious about Piper’s offer, but changes his tune rather significantly when he calls Piper up to offer her an even better deal.
Noah and Audrey are still discussing the severity of Branson’s creepiness and make their way to his classroom, as Detective Brock calls in Maggie to the police station to ask her questions about how royally Sheriff Hudson screwed up the ongoing investigation. Obviously, Maggie doesn’t say anything incriminating or negative about Hudson, but Brock mentions she’s found a new suspect that was right under everyone’s eyes. Just then, officers come into Branson’s classroom and take Audrey in for questioning, all because her DNA was found on the Brandon James mask in the abandoned hospital, and thanks to her not having an confirmable alibi at the time of Nina’s death as she was with Rachel.
Meanwhile, Brooke and Jake are investigating the possible death of Brooke’s mother and check Mayor Maddox’s garage refrigeration unit for a possible dead body. Fortunately, Brooke isn’t subjected to seeing her mother’s frozen corpse, but the suspicion on her father hasn’t died down at all.
While Audrey is hauled off as suspecto número uno, Emma and Noah investigate the likelihood of Branson being the infamous murderer. After spending an afternoon bonding with Branson over his class assignment, Noah voices his doubts over Branson’s guilt. In fact, he says that Branson may have just been innocently caught in Tyler and Nina’s blackmailing scheme.
Brock attempts to question Maggie without a parent present until Hudson stops her midway and waits with Audrey for her father. Shouldn’t Brock get in trouble for this blatant disregard of the rules? Let’s hope so. While Brock and Audrey’s father talk outside the interrogation room, Audrey makes a quick call with Brock’s phone to Emma and Noah telling them to go to her house, find a specific SD card, and destroy it without watching it. They agree to the heist but because pretty much no one, especially teenagers, can resist doing something someone tells them not to do, Noah and Emma watch the video anyway. It shows a livid Audrey telling Rachel that Nina needed to pay for what she did and threatening Nina’s life in the process. Emma maintains that her friend could never actually go through with killing Nina even though she looks doubtful because, as she states, she hasn’t gotten any killer phone calls since Audrey was picked up. But Noah is surprisingly worried and says, in fact, that he always thought Audrey was capable of murder. He goes off to process the video revelation as Emma talks to her mom about Audrey and voices her doubts.
NEXT: Danger, Will Belmont!
Despite Emma’s lingering worries over Audrey’s innocence she says she just doesn’t believe her friend could be so brutal. Maggie says to stick to her guns no matter what. And then she reveals her surprising backstory with Brandon James: Turns out Brandon and Maggie were childhood friends with Brandon being in love with her as far back as she can remember. The night of the school dance, Brandon went to the dance to convince Maggie that she deserved better than Emma’s father. Unfortunately someone told Emma’s father, who had been having problems with Maggie, and Brandon was beaten to a pulp. When the massacre began, Maggie called Brandon to the pier to talk and when he showed up, he looked frightened. And he had good reason as Maggie’s father knew about the meeting and called the police who shot and presumably killed Brandon. Maggie is still not convinced that Brandon actually snapped and went on his infamous murder spree.
Emma decides to stand by her friend in the most intense way possible: By straight up lying to the cops to remove suspicion from Audrey. She tells Detective Brock that she was with Audrey the night Nina died, and took credit for making the video along with Nina. Maggie backs up Emma’s story, though I can’t tell if she was just corroborating a story on which she had limited information or if she was just lying like her kid. Emma tells Sheriff Hudson that she’s willing to sign a sworn affidavit to confirm her story and Audrey is released. The friends hug outside and Audrey tells her that she kept the video as a reminder of what she almost did that night and of Rachel, which is why she could never bring herself to destroy it. Emma gives Audrey back the card and the two hug. All seems well, but this is Scream, and there’s no way the episode would end without some kind of killer-related twist.
Will’s new story angle is going according to plan. He calls Mayor Maddox to meet at an abandoned warehouse where Maddox believes he’s supposed to deliver the rest of the money. But when Maddox shows up he reveals that he knows Will is behind the blackmail. Will attempts to do the right thing by handing over the money he and Jake already received from Maddox as well as the last surviving copy of the video (this is clearly untrue because Jake has a copy that he showed Brooke, right commenters?). What Will doesn’t realize is that Maddox is packing heat and threats, and he’s about ready to use his gun too, until Will says, “I’ve done a lot of wrong things in my life. I’d rather not die doing the right thing.” Maddox tells him not to breathe another word of this to which Will complies. There’s just one tiny problem for Maddox: The entire exchange is recorded by Piper who is clearly hiding her giddiness over getting a huge new angle in her podcast and the possibility of a new suspect in the case. But things don’t stay so happy as the killer reveals himself to the pair, stabbing Will and almost rendering Piper unconscious. She has to watch groggily as Will is dragged away into the darkness.
I can’t say I’m all that bummed about the possibility of Will’s death, but it does lessen his chances of being a suspect. Let’s go to the board!
Emma: It’s not Emma. Next.
Brooke: I just don’t believe Brooke is capable of these intricate, bloody games and murders, especially since she’s got her own, potentially murderous problems. Though it might be important to note that Brooke has been the one to reveal big and (at times) possibly devastating news to Emma after lengthy periods of silence. Perhaps she’s just not the greatest friend but it’s a little strange.
Brock: She’s the worst, but most likely not the killer. She didn’t show up until after the investigation started, and she has no real motive.
Maggie: While it’s strange that she only just revealed the truth about her connection to Brandon James and her doubts that he was ever a murderer, I still don’t believe she could be the killer.
NEXT: At this point everyone else is suspect…
Noah: Where did Noah go to process his emotions about Audrey’s video? He disappeared after the revelation, when Emma went to the police station to save Audrey. Noah is becoming more and more suspect again, which sucks.
Will: The dude gets stabbed and dragged away by the killer. He’s probably not involved in the murders… unless this is all a ploy to get Emma back and Will is actually one of the two killers? Two killers just seems right at this point, don’t you think?
Piper: I know that fellow EW writer Natalie Abrams theorized that Piper might be Brandon James’ daughter and thus could be the killer, and it’s a popular theory. But I’m in the other camp; the camp that believes Piper is a red herring and is actually just meant to stir the pot when it comes to trying to decide who the real killer is. She was attacked by the killer in this episode, but wasn’t murdered as collateral damage, which does seem a bit strange. But I can’t bring myself to seriously suspect her as the killer. As she says herself, her father was killed when she was young and she believes the police don’t really care about finding out who murdered him. If her father was Brandon James, we know who killed him: The police. This theory just doesn’t line up for me.
Jake: I’m always suspicious of this “doosh.” He’s got to have some kind of twisted reason to help Brooke find out whether or not her father killed her mother, I’m just not sure of what that reason is yet.
Mayor Maddox: Dude is sketchy, but is he the killer? If anything, he probably killed his wife, but I can’t see why he’d want to kill a bunch of students, even if he’s crazy.
Audrey: Emma might have cleared her from police suspicion, but I’m not fully buying Audrey’s story. But here’s the thing that bugs me about this killer: He or she seems to change heights constantly. When the killer snuck up on Rachel and killed her, they seemed to be at eye level or potentially shorter. The killer that stabbed Will seemed to be closer to Will’s height, and he’s a tall kid. Could there be two killers? I’ve brought this theory up before as it does make sense with the original film series. But it’s just becoming more and more feasible as the TV series progresses. Maybe Audrey did kill at least one or two of the victims, or maybe I’m completely wrong and the suspicion on Audrey is once again a red herring. Ugh, this show.
Sheriff Hudson: He didn’t do much in the episode, but Hudson always seems suspect to me. I don’t have any really reasons behind it but I think it’s possible that the new guy in town and his son could be the murderous duo. The only loose end to tie up is their motive. Commenters, any theories?
Branson: He has yet to be cleared as a suspect, and even if he was, I wouldn’t trust Branson with a ten-foot pole. The guy is kind of creepy and I just can’t believe that he didn’t know about the malware installed on his system. There’s no way he was just some kind of patsy for Tyler and Nina, Branson is clearly a smart man and had to be involved in this voyeuristic plan. And if we believe this, how big of a stretch is it really to think that Branson could have killed a handful of students?
Emma’s Father: That’s right, I’m adding a new character to the list, one we’ve yet to meet in the flesh. Now I don’t know if the series has promised that someone we’ve already met is the killer, so if someone comes across an article stating this fact, let me know. But if not, doesn’t it seem entirely plausible that Emma’s dad went completely nutso, actually committed the murders, and then pinned it on Brandon? We know now that Maggie doesn’t believe Brandon actually killed anyone, but we also know that Kevin Duval is supposedly the only survivor of the Brandon James murder spree. So if Brandon is innocent, doesn’t that mean that Kevin is, at the very least, a big fat liar?
Kieran: Aside from making a joke about the Duval women having some kind of sex pact with him and his father, Kieran is once again relatively absent from this episode. Even in the dream, the dude disappears. Could Emma be harboring some subconscious fears or concerns about Kieran? Also, where is he all the time? My guess: Doing some killing with dear ol’ dad.