Gracepoint: Episode Ten

This is overdue, but for folks who find us later on when looking for info on Gracepoint, I wanted to cap the series run by talking about the finale. So, I didn’t see that coming at all. (Reminder: I did not watch Broadchurch).

As all the pieces fell into place, it was Carver who finally put them all together to realize that Ellie’s perfect, storybook husband, Joe, was dangerously close to a pedophile relationship with Danny, and that when Tom discovered them arguing at the bluff that night, the swing of an oar he intended for his dad instead killed his best friend.

While Joe never had sex with Danny, that was definitely coming down the pike, until the two-week break Joe had taken with his family helped release Danny from whatever spell Joe had on him. What initially began as relationship with a friendly adult when Danny’s home life got complicated, it was evolving into something much more dangerous as Joe developed romantic intentions. After Tom accidentally kills Danny, Joe covers it up with the scene on the beach, hence the reason something always seemed a little off with Tom.

When all of this is blown wide open, Ellie finds herself in the same position as Susan had years earlier — married to a monster whose true nature she didn’t know. Unfortunately, we don’t actually get a scene between the women in the finale — I wanted to see that conversation, especially after Ellie couldn’t believe Susan never knew what her husband was doing.

Of course, the Solanos are equally shattered by the discovery, and Mark goes to see Joe, who lapses into a weird sort of childlike state — copping to the murder but adamant he wasn’t a pedophile. Then Ellie gets in the room with him and just rages until Carver pulls her back–worried about his case.

The Solanos finally have a funeral, and Ellie feels the wrath of the town, as one by one, folks turn on her. Once she and her boys are put into protective custody because their house is a crime scene, we see the whole truth of the night of Danny’s death. Joe’s initial story is that Danny fell and hit his head, but Tom comes clean to his mom that he struck Danny and Joe covered it up.

After a beachside memorial that’s lit by bonfires on both sides of the water, Carver calls his daughter and tells her he will have his heart surgery, and she agrees to support him. Then he plays back the recording of Tom’s interview, which Joe sat in on — that he had to record on his phone — and the penny drops that Tom dodged the question about whether Paul or any other adult had ever hit Danny. Then he calls Ellie and she doesn’t pick up.

And that’s where we leave everyone.

At some point I want to go back and rewatch the series, because it was such a left-field reveal. Josh Hamilton and I are about the same age, and I’ve been watching him since the 80s, when he did afterschool specials for ABC and CBS. I don’t recall him ever playing a role like this, so that alone was cool to watch unfold (even if it made me queasy as hell). The scene where Carver calls Danny’s burner phone and Joe emerges from his darkened garage holding it was just A+ creepy.

I liked this series, for all the reasons I’ve said previously — cast + location + story. I’m glad FOX ran the whole thing. You can watch all of the episodes online at FOX and on Amazon Instant Video.

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