Whodunnit? – Episode 5 Review

horse

This week’s episode of Whodunnit? sent players outside the mansion to the stables and a horse trail, where Ulysses apparently fell off his horse and died.

 

Investigation:

Dana did a good job finding a key piece of information at the Morgue (the puncture wounds on Uylsses’s right leg), but her focus on being sneaky meant that she missed another important piece: the splinters on his jeans.  Since she was one of the players convinced he died by snakebite, this could have been important piece for her and for Ronnie’s team.

wound

Ronnie also found a vital clue at the Last Known Whereabouts, but he looked a little too suspicious in his attempt to hide it.  I’m not sure if he could have done a better job.  They were working pretty closely and it was a difficult clue to hide.

The Crime Scene seemed to have the least amount of useful data, with two of the strongest players there to investigate.  That area revealed how the bird diversion was triggered, and a snake red herring, but not much else.  Unfortunately, that red herring played a big part in this week’s elimination.

At this point, Ronnie’s team attempted to break up the power team once in for all by luring one player away, but nobody took the bait.

paths

Puzzle:

Another riddle started off this puzzle, and sent players down three different paths.  And again, I think each path could be spun to match the riddle, but whatever.  At the end of the correct path, players found a physical puzzle that would lead them to the next site when completed.  Some players solved this quickly while others had trouble (I think I would have been one of the ones having trouble).  The final site of the puzzle was a small, snake-filled cabin where only one player was allowed 2 minutes at a time to search for the murder weapon. I love elements like this where there is a time limit to search a room, or where groups are split up and experience things individually. Players got to enter on a first-come, first-served basis, so the quickest ones got in first.  In the end, the entire line of players went through at least once before Cris noticed the loose floorboard that was the murder weapon.

I’m going to reach out again here and say that, as the Killer, Cris was guided to the solution because the group was taking too long to solve the puzzle.  I think this is totally plausible.  I had thought maybe she knew the answer earlier for the flag and door connection, but interviews have said that the Killer doesn’t know the puzzle solutions.  In this case, if a staff member was in the cabin, it would have been easy for them to guide her to it.  Or she could have known the general area of the clue in advance and might have been told to solve it if she had already been through at least once.  I think it’s plausible!

chart

Things got very interesting post-puzzle.  Ronnie’s team debated about whether the snake was poisonous.  Sasha was convinced it was non-poisonous, but Melina mistakenly (or purposefully?) recalled the snakes on the poison chart backwards and insisted it was poisonous.  This was frustrating to watch, because the group had several clues pointing away from the snake (too obvious, too wide of a bite mark, wound on the wrong leg) as well as several clues pointing to another method (the nails, the mortar and pestle, and Sasha’s knowledge that Oleander was poisonous).  It’s really frustrating to watch the players flat-out ignore evidence.

Sasha managed to get some helpful information out of Cris (which everyone then ignored), and Ronnie found himself talking with Kam’s group right up until the bell rang, putting him in a difficult position with his team.

snake

Murder Method:

This one had another batch of good red herrings, though things are starting to get a bit formulaic (obvious murder method that is a red herring, and about three important clues pointing to the real, less obvious method).  I’m not really convinced that oleander-tipped nails would kill a man nearly instantly (or ever).  There have only been three reported human deaths linked to oleander, and those were all from ingestion.  Wikipedia says it’s dangerous to have oleander near animals who might eat it, especially horses (because it is sweet), so it doesn’t make a lot of sense for a big branch of the stuff to be growing through a stable window.  I’m starting to accept the idea that the aim of the game is not to logically deduce what would have killed the victim, but to logically deduce which of the provided puzzle pieces fit together nicely to make an interesting story.

 

Elimination:

Ooooo boy things are starting to get exciting!  This week, there were three Scared cards delivered to Geno, Dana, and Sasha.  Three is exciting!  The choices make me wonder again how the Scared players are chosen.  Sasha had the right idea about the oleander, while Melina was apparently convinced the snake was the culprit (just an act?).  In any case, it certainly put Ronnie in a bad place with his team, and even he thought he must have looked like a sellout to the rest of his team.

fire

And then!  The ending!!  Ahhh!!!  We were yelling from the couch!  First of all, the organ playing is super creepy and I love it.  And then we saw Geno and thought he was still alive!  But then we thought… he is getting too much screen time, he’s about to be killed!  But then we saw Dana and Sasha, and we were like whaaat?  And then they looked so creepy and we thought, they’re going to kill him together or something!!  And then we realized they were both dead, aaah!!  Haha.  It was so exciting!  How exciting to eliminate two players.  And in such a dramatic way!  It really makes me feel better to imagine that it was probably so fun for Sasha and Dana to get all made up like they were and get ready to scare the crap out of everyone.

And then the preview for next episode looks AMAZING!  I love creepy stuff, and I’m so glad the show (or at least just one episode) is taking a turn for the eerie side.  Sunday can’t get here fast enough!

 

Other Thoughts:

I’m still sticking with Cris for the killer this week.  Melina was a little bit suspicious in her huge piece of misinformation, but lack of Scared status.  But I think it’s more likely that she’s just trying to eliminate her teammates by misleading them to keep herself out of the bottom.  She did say she planned to play the naive card as long as she could, and innocently misremembering a really important sign seems to line right up with that strategy.

I’m definitely curious how much extra information Ronnie got from Kam’s group.  I think he’s smart enough to have figured it out just from what Cris had told Sasha, but even if he did, he’s going to have a hard time convincing his teammates of that.  Honestly, it seems like these coalitions are going to start becoming obsolete soon, which is fine for a group falling apart, but it’s dangerous if Ronnie is making individual enemies.  It’s really tough, because from his teammates’ point of view, he’s been a pretty great leader and stand-up guy so far.  He’s kept a few things to himself here and there to play the game, but who hasn’t?  The even bigger danger for him is that he’s such a strong player, the others might have ganged up to eliminate him anyway.

It will be interesting to see where small two-person alliances form from this point on.  The power team might hang on for one more episode, but after that I think it might be something of a free-for-all.

This show is getting better each week, and I can’t wait to see how things continue over the remaining episodes!