3.13 "Postgame Mortem"

Aired Feb 13, 2007


Speculation

Following a long discussion about God and stuff...

grim squeaker: Uh, what about spec? Because I was hoping I could still achieve something today, and the chance is gradually getting smaller.
Inigo: Hey, I'm not the one came marching in with all this God talk. I've been staying out of it. And I'm not the one taking up your last...eight hours or so.

grim squeaker: No, you are certainly not. Okay then...you are so mean...like, totally. Come on: Who killed the Dean-o?
Inigo: I see three questions: Who killed the dean, who killed the basketball coach, are they connected?
grim squeaker: Tim, Josh and someone else, no idea.
Inigo: Can we go backwards or Coach, then connection, then Dean?
grim squeaker: I don't mind either way. What do you prefer?

Let's start off with Coach Barry.

Inigo: I don't think it was Josh, I think it was the assistant coach. Want to know why?
grim squeaker: Sure.
Inigo: I think it was the assistant coach because they were very clear in showing us the two them standing face to face in the background of the first scene - same hair colour, same hair style, similar height, and the AC was wearing a team jacket. He was also urging Josh quite passionately to stay, more so than might seem usual. He made references to the coach I couldn't catch, too.
grim squeaker: Yes. So, depending if Mason told the truth, he could have seen the coach and the assistant coach.
Inigo: Yes, Mason is telling the truth as he saw it. But he admitted he saw "Josh" from behind. He expected it to be Josh, so for him it was. Coach Barry did leave his ring in Josh's locker as a peace offering. The kid was All-Conference, no way was the coach as dismissive of Josh's skills as he seemed, and Coach Barry would have wanted Josh to reach his potential.
grim squeaker: What rubs me the wrong way here is actually how they presented Josh. He could, of course, just be a red herring, but he obviously used Veronica to get him out of prison, and the whole way he manipulated her reminded me of Mercer an awful lot. Also the fact that V doesn't really trust him and the fact that he was so ready to blame Mason. Something is very clearly off about Josh. Also, how do we know that the peace offering story is true? It seems pretty bizarre, actually.
Inigo: I think that had Keith and Veronica believed the Barrys from the start, I'd have less trouble believing them involved. But I think the whole season has been tinged with a nod to the Marses occasional lack of good judgement - Keith with Kendall and Harmony, Veronica with quite a few, that I think we need to look away from where they suspect, for the dean as well. As for the peace offering, I don't think it's bizarre between a father and son for the father to use a symbol of what both unites and divides them.
grim squeaker: Something that might support your theory could actually be the movie they mentioned. Have you seen Kiss Kiss Bang Bang?
Inigo: I haven't seen KKBB. Tell me about it, if you will.
grim squeaker: Well, without going into details, there are an awful lot of mistaken identities, purposefully employed, and tragically misinterpreted. That could support your idea that what Mason thought was Josh was actually the AC. I don't believe the ring story, sorry. Josh simply was very sketchy. I am awfully sure he is hiding something, and I definitely think he is lying about the ring. A ring is not just a symbol, it's something very personal. I don't believe the coach would just put it in his son's locker. (Besides, how could he open that, anyway?)
Inigo: It might not be the AC, it might just have been to set up the mistaken-identity scene, but I can't see another candidate at this point. Josh didn't come across to me as that sketchy. I thought he was a fairly typical sullen teen who is battling with his father over his life. As coach, I would expect Tom Barry to have keys to all the lockers. The ring is symbolic of his success and the success that is Josh's if he works at it. I don't know. I agree Josh used Veronica to get out of jail. He's obviously peanut allergic, which explains the odd look to the cell mate. He needed to rely on him to call the deputies when he went into shock. But using people is what Veronica does all the time, so I don't see it as a mark of guilt.
grim squeaker: It just... dude, it resembled Mercer's MO quite a lot. Weevil's in "Hot Dogs," if we are willing to go for something more neutral, and at that point, Weevil was suspicious as hell.
Inigo: Interestingly, when I was doing the transcript, I looked at Josh's dialogue again when he asked for the cookies, and I'm almost thinking he didn't do it deliberately.
grim squeaker: No, watch that scene again, it totally was deliberately. I mean, he asked for peanut butter.
Inigo: That "preferably peanut butter" could have been in the same category as "hacksaw" and that when she said she couldn't, his "I'll live" was literal.
grim squeaker: It was an opportunistic shot and he took it. That was absolutely on purpose.
Inigo: Yeah, maybe.
grim squeaker: Hey, since when are you defending overly suspicious gents? That's my job!
Inigo: I don't know, maybe because Josh seems so sinister that I'm just not buying it, and thus looking for "innocent" explanations for what he does do.
grim squeaker: Just awfully manipulative, that one. I don't know if he really killed his dad, but something is definitely going on here.
Inigo: If you accept that he deliberately requested the peanut butter, then yes, that was manipulative, but no more than VM is on any given day. I don't correlate manipulative = evil or even hiding something. I do get his escape. It's as he told V. It seems the world's gone mad, everybody is lying and there's no way out unless he finds one. Was there any other behaviour of his that you would call manipulative, other than the biscuits?
grim squeaker: Yeah, the whole way he related to her was kind of... deliberate. He apparently was on the team for a long time, he probably knows Wallace, and knowing Wallace, I bet he bragged about V and her skills. I can't name a specific scene, but it was like he was sort of off the whole time. A lot of it was subtext, like him suddenly looming over V on the cliff. It was purposefully filmed as if he was pondering to push her over. And I would say that this is almost too much, but then I think of Mercer, and Alex De Large, you know.
Inigo: Yes, indeed. I think his acting brief was to play brooding, angry potential killer. Ah well, we may or may not know next week, which brings us to:

Is the coach's murder connected with the dean's?

Inigo: If Josh killed him, then probably not, but if Josh didn't...
grim squeaker: Do we have any similarities, other than both of them being university staff and both of them having sullen sons?
Inigo: They both have younger sons with medical problems.
grim squeaker: Well, the coach's son is autistic, while Jason had cancer. Hardly the same thing.
Inigo: No, not the same thing. We don't know if Mrs. Barry steps out. We don't know if Tom Barry gambled. Also there's the connection with Mel.
grim squeaker: It might all be deliberate to lay a false track, though. To put suspicion on Mel, or maybe even Gram, if you go by storyline parallels.
Inigo: Yes, that's possible. There's also the Strangers on a Train theory whereby Josh and Gram met up (or Mindy and Mrs. Barry) and agreed to murder each other's father/husband. The problem, of course, was that the whole point was for the "natural" suspect to have a cast iron alibi when the relevant murder took place, so I don't see it.
grim squeaker: No, that seems off to me as well.
Inigo: I think we don't know enough about the coach to know what he was about, enough to be able to distinguish any sort of motive.
grim squeaker: Yeah, I think it is too early to find any parallels.
Inigo: What about this - the dean's death was murder as suicide, so the coach's death is suicide disguised as murder. Josh watched his father take his life.
grim squeaker: But why did the coach kill himself?
Inigo: No idea. Pressure from Mel finally got to him, and losing his son from the team was the last straw?
grim squeaker: I'd need more evidence here, because he really didn't seem suicidal. One thing: why was the car pushed into the ocean?
Inigo: A couple of possibilities. He did it himself. The murderer did it to make it look like a carjacking. Someone else did it to make it look like a carjacking. Although how on earth Lamb missed it is a puzzle.
grim squeaker: Why on earth was the coach on the PCH; was that cleared up?
Inigo: We have one reason as to why the coach was there. He used to go up there to think after he lost games, according to Josh. What if...a thought is forming.
grim squeaker: Yeah, that was a little overly convenient. It might explain Josh's Sudden Serial Killer stance on the cliff though, if he is involved somehow and really didn't want Veronica to find out about the car.
Inigo: Okay, say the coach was dirty. Say the actual reason he would go up there after lost games was to collect the money he earned for ensuring the team lost.
grim squeaker: It's definitely part of the cover up... he wanted to make it look like the PCHers did it at first, so he pushed the car into the water. But then Veronica discovered it, so he had to opt for murder. Then he got arrested, but it wasn't him, it's probably like you said, his dad killed himself. And Josh needed it to look like something else, so that his mother would get the insurance money for his little brother.
Inigo: Yes, that works. Except for what Mason saw, unless the coach killed himself in front of Josh.
grim squeaker: Mel wanted the coach to be gone because he considered him useless, right? So your idea about him being crooked definitely has merit. Maybe Mason was lying.
Inigo: Maybe the reason Mason was always in the coach's bad books was because he was the better player. Wallace speaks the truth, man.
grim squeaker: Does not compute? I remember Wallace saying something in that direction, but what exactly did he say?
Inigo: Wallace said Mason was the better player but didn't play because he was always in the coach's bad books. Okay, summarising an alternative theory - the coach is bent. He deliberately keeps Mason benched, and he alienates the team's All-Conference small forward whose buttons he knows exactly how to push, being his father. He goes up to the cliff to collect. Someone, and I'm still going for AC, finds him there, having found out about it, argues with him and is seen by Mason, but mistaken for Josh. He kills the coach and makes it look like suicide. Josh arrives, father's dead in what looks like suicide. To protect his mother and brother, he pushes the car off the cliff to make it look like murder. How's that?
grim squeaker: So, that explains why Josh is sketchy as hell, takes care of what Mason saw, and connects it to our main mystery in that something was made to look as something else. And doubly so.
Inigo: Score!
grim squeaker: Hee. We'll see next week I guess.
Inigo: And be completely wrong, no doubt.

Okay, only one more thing to get completely wrong

Inigo: The dean-o.
grim squeaker: Yes.
Inigo: The dean's death...dun, dun, dun.
grim squeaker: The Dean-o. Still dead-o. (*groan*)
Inigo: So, wyk and misskiwi laughed in my face -- in my face, I tell you! -- at my Tim theory. And everything we saw this week seems to point us to the adulterers. Views?
grim squeaker: Well, all of the players in the Rory Finch story turned up again - except the mastermind behind it, who was curiously absent. Makes you wonder, doesn't it?
Inigo: And that would be my boy Tim. Yes, I know. One thing that's completely confused me. We have no idea what time O'Dell arrived at the Grand, do we? [postscript: In fact we do. The room service charge for the crème brûlée was incurred just before midnight.]
grim squeaker: Other than that it was between Keith leaving and the dean passing out on the coach... no. Er, the couch I mean. Not to turn this into a drama of epic proportions. You know: "They were killed for their secret love!"
Inigo: So, Jeff hears what we have to assume was Landry and O'Dell, and that matches up with when Jeff arrived the first time, that is, Landry had just ordered the crème brûlée when O'Dell arrived. Then Jeff comes back later and a woman opens the door, which makes me think that Mindy was in the room all night -- it was Hank who went walkabout. I don't know what those two are protecting.
grim squeaker: The question is, why did he go walkabout? Did someone call him? Oh, and they so synchronised their alibis, didn't they?
Inigo: It seems so. But if they killed him, it makes no sense for Mindy to drag Keith in when they got away with it.
grim squeaker: Default idea: Gram.
Inigo: Yes, Gram is all that makes any sense. Gram took the car, Mindy called Landry from the garage and then they thought Gram might have killed O'Dell, so they're trying to protect him.
grim squeaker: Mindy would likely want to - after all he is her stepson, and the fact that he stayed with her after the Dean's death speaks for a good relationship - and Hank would probably go along with her.
Inigo: But, would Mindy have been quite so comfortable for Keith to go in and talk to Gram on his own?
grim squeaker: Was she comfortable with it? Maybe she was just stalling. Or maybe she is only scared that he might get drawn into the investigation, that's why she is lying.
Inigo: She seemed to be. She took Jason upstairs, and she didn't seem agitated to see Keith come out of Gram's room, although maybe...I'll have to watch that scene again. It didn't strike me at the time. But it does explain another reason why she got Keith involved -- to clear Gram because she doesn't think he did it, she just has to protect him because she can't prove it.
grim squeaker: And because she doesn't really trust Keith, she doesn't tell him?
Inigo: She can't tell Keith for a couple of reasons. Keith didn't see that the dean was back at his office alive and had a visitor. If Mindy tells Keith that O'Dell came to the hotel and then left, Keith would probably be thinking that O'Dell died there (and the two of them ferried his body back in the two cars) or that either Mindy and Hank had been threatened and had good motive to follow the dean in the Volvo and kill him.
grim squeaker: Yeah, that makes sense.
Inigo: So they are in a difficult position because they are in the frame. I actually think that maybe Hank went after Gram, who took the Volvo, but that all of it was unconnected with the dean's death.
grim squeaker: It would be like she was all caught up in trying to protect everyone involved and having to keep lying even though telling the truth at least to Keith would probably go a long way to protect Gram. If this is what happens. That sounds good, actually.
Inigo: Yeah. It's her son's future. She can't afford to jeopardise it. And Hank, being an expert, didn't necessarily want her to go to Keith, as they were safe before she did, but won't betray her. Or something.
grim squeaker: Now, how do we get Tim into this? Because I can't quite believe that everything just coincided so well for him, what with both Landry and Mindy being in a vulnerable position just when he decides to kill the dean.
Inigo: Yeah, I know. I still haven't got a grasp on the motive at all, from anybody. I can't see who has benefited from the dean's death. My Tim theory...hang on, what was fixed in advance? The Pi Sig party was. The tryst at the hotel was. Anything else?
grim squeaker: The paper on the net?
Inigo: Yeah. What was not fixed -- Cyrus hiring Keith, Veronica discovering the rapist, the Lilith House girls egging the office and Nish the Volvo...
grim squeaker: The scotch...in the sense of Keith discovering it was not a suicide because of the scotch...
Inigo: You know, I think I'm stumped.
grim squeaker: Ah, don't give up. I think it's just a very messed up motive. You know, maybe Tim's pissed that Veronica challenged him in the rapist mystery - not solving it, but pretending she saw something he didn't - and that's why he is challenging her with the dean's murder now.
Inigo: Oooh. Ooooooooh. Academic jealousy gone psycho. Yes, I could get behind that.
grim squeaker: It's like Rope. "Well, if you're so clever, asshat, resolve THIS!"
Inigo: I haven't noticed a huge number of long tracking shots.
grim squeaker: Yeah, that would have given it away a little too early, I think. And it would be in character, he has been jealous of her the whole time...
Inigo: So, that fits with what I had, that the dean's death was a means to an end, and not the end itself. I thought it was to frame Landry, but it could just be to play to Farley Granger to Landry's James Stewart, taking on V at the same time. That last point is crucial; otherwise why use V's paper?
grim squeaker: Yep, I think so, too. He wants to prove once and for all that he is cleverer than BOTH OF THEM!! MUAHAHAHA! It's basically Academics Gone Wild.
Inigo: Yes, and we had a clue in the very first episode.
grim squeaker: We did?
Inigo: From Veronica: "Some girl going wild? As I understand it, it happens all the time in college. I'm on the verge of it right now."
grim squeaker: But Tim is not a girl...
Inigo: A minor quibble.
grim squeaker: Sigh. He is surely Unlucky, isn't he? (Dear God, save us all from the PUNS!)
Inigo: Puns are good. Well, any other thoughts? You said something on the board about seeing some themes that pointed you to Tim.
grim squeaker: Again, Rory Finch. BTW, for some reason the name always, always rings a bell and I don't know why. But so did Mercer Hayes, so maybe I'm just being weird. I mean, Rory Finch was the theme I talked about. And Sherlock Holmes being his monitor background in the last episode. So freaking proud of his cleverness, that boy.
Inigo: Your weirdness usually starts that Adamski song running in my head.
grim squeaker: "Killer"?
Inigo: That's the one.
grim squeaker: Yeah, Seal does that to people.
Inigo: He does more than that for Heidi Klum, I'm sure.
grim squeaker: Ah, young love.
grim squeaker: Are we finished?
Inigo: I think so. Thanks. Only one more, then we're done.
grim squeaker: Yeah, but maybe we should have an aftermath discussion, no?
Inigo: I'm up for it if you are.
grim squeaker: Well, not if Beaver did it, but anything else would work fine for me.
Inigo: Hee. Look forward to it my little evil-radar.
grim squeaker: *bows* And... scene.


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