Whodunnit? – Episode 2 Review

Running pretty behind, but here is a quick review of Episode 2 of ABC’s Whoddunit?

The format established in the premiere continued into week 2.  There are great discussion threads on reddit each week, so I’ll be referencing this week’s thread a lot.

Investigation:

The players investigated well — especially in collecting all the bits and pieces at the bottom of the pool and looking for ignition points on Dontae’s body.  But they had a tough time trying to share information and lies about what they had found.  A new coalition formed, which seemed to cause a lot of damage for a group that spent too much time trying to break into that group and not enough time actually getting information.  Players confused themselves with the lies they told, and spread lies about things that were too easily debunked.  Someone on reddit suggested the players ought to be lying about information that cannot be confirmed, which sounds like a great strategy that I hope to see employed soon.  Why not make up an extra object found in the room, or an extra wound on the body?  Of course, after the killer explains the murder, your lie would be found out.  But how interesting would the trust issues be from that point forward?  You would only be able to trust information that matched up with things you personally witnessed, or that you could confirm with a trusted source.

trio

Puzzle:

It was fun to see the different players’ interpretations of the riddle.  I thought some of them had some good ideas!  One redditor brought up an interesting suggestion – it seems like Lindsey has lead the group astray twice in a week on the puzzle, first by focusing on the daughters passage in the Bible and then by insisting that the fireplace would cause a reaction in the flags.  Connecting the fact that she’s a pastor’s daughter to the numerous religious references made by the killer so far makes Lindsey a convincing suspect.

flag

I still stand by my guess of Cris, and I might just be looking for reasons to suspect her, but I thought her role in this week’s puzzle was telling.  I thought it was a bit of a reach to find the Rue Manor crest on the flags significant.  That crest is everywhere and printed on everything used in the game, so I don’t think I would have personally made that connection and I wouldn’t be surprised if the players were taking too long to make it themselves.  So why not kill two birds with one stone?  Have the killer, who already knows the details of each puzzle, make the vital connection, simultaneously moving the group along while diverting negative attention and suspicion away from herself for this week.  This episode also marked the first time the other players have really mentioned Cris in their personal videos, though still only briefly.

door

 

Murder Method:

I thought this week

‘s murder method was interesting, but according to several chemist redditors, not only would Benzene-soaked pajamas be so uncomfortable that nobody could stand to keep them on, but a static electricity spark wouldn’t be enough to ignite the pajamas.  If the only way to win the game is to logically deduce the murder method, it’s pretty problematic if the method the producers choose is not actually feasible.  I thought last week’s was a little questionable as well, so I’m really hoping that tonight’s method will be rock solid.

benzene

Elimination:

SO glad that Adrianna was eliminated.  I can’t believe how many viewers thought she was the killer.  It’s never the annoying person!  Glad to be rid of that red herring and non-useful drama generation.  I think a lot of people still think Dana is the killer though, which makes me wonder (even though I don’t think she is a suspect) — will they put the killer in the bottom 2 at any point to divert attention?

Curious to see tonight what drove Adrianna out of the mansion and to her doom (which was foreshadowed by the butler saying players cannot leave the mansion).  It looked like she might have gotten a message or sign from the killer and was trying to escape her fate.  How was the killer planning to kill her if she hadn’t run?  Or was that part of the plan all along?

 

Other thoughts:

I had been thinking about this and it came up on reddit as well — how do the players have any idea who the killer might be?  As far as I can tell, the killer isn’t supposed to be doing anything differently from any of the other players.  As far as motivation, the killer doesn’t really care if the players solve the murder or not, so there is no incentive for sabotage.  (Actually, what is the killer’s motivation?)  So all the players have to go on is very subtle meta cues, how a person seems to be reacting to things they might already know about the production of the show.  Very strange.  I hope the guess for the killer’s identity doesn’t hold a lot of weight in the eliminations (which is frustrating, because it would be nice as a way to confirm your own guess based on the eliminated players’ guesses).

Also, what was up with all the imagery used in the preview for this episode that didn’t show up?  Lots of shots of animals, and Giles with a gun.  (That footage was used again for this week’s preview as well)  I liked that they at least mislead me a bit by having a male scream over the golf cart explosion, though I was bummed that they kind of spoiled the surprise of the method.  I can’t really remember much about the preview for tonight’s episode, I was sleep-deprived and out of it from WarTron weekend.

 

Looking forward to tonight’s episode, and hopefully I’ll get that write-up done faster =)

2 comments on Whodunnit? – Episode 2 Review

  • persona

    Only 15 minutes before the new episode live here, but here’s a few things I noticed comparing the two episodes so far:

    1) Dante’s Inferno is too good to not have been on purpose. I’m guessing that from here on out, each murder is already tied to the contestant. The producers just stage whichever one the last defeated contestant ran.

    2) The first murder had no cross-verifiable clues, the main topics of the investigations (the musket ball, the point of impact with the fishtank, and the message on the mirror) were all unique to their locations. For this second murder, every major clue was cross-verified. If I’m right that the order of the murders is now no longer in the control of the producers, then they still have the ability to leave or not-leave cross-verifiable clues. I posit that the two-scenes-per-clue will continue for a few more eliminations, then go to one-scene-per-clue as a way to shake up the dynamics.

    3) I really really wish they’d publish the written test questions after the episode. The Mole showed them during the test, and that was great drama and a great check on your own memory!

  • Matthew Marcus

    I would be shocked if it wasn’t Cris. Not to sound too egotistical, but as an actor, I can spot a written script. And you’re right. She moved the group along in episode two, because they weren’t going to get it in time.

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