We’re rounding out the latter half of Falling Water season 2, and the revelations-per-hour are piling on thick. Episode 206, “Mothers, Fathers, Daughters, Sons” leads to more unexpected deaths at the hands of the Shadowman while Tess, Burton, Taka, and now Alex get ever-so-closer to taking him (and his presumed employer, Taylor Bennett) down. Catch up on all that and more with our weekly recap below.
Taka brings Alex into the fold
Alex is brought up to speed on the Shadowman and Taka’s dreamer abilities, but how can they bring the rest of the law onto their side with no living witnesses and only circumstantial—and far-fetched—evidence? That’s why Taka decides it’s time for Alex to meet Tess, Burton, and Lainie, who’s still drugged and unconscious (despite Tess’ efforts to comfort and wake her mid-dream) but who can serve as the witness they need to the human trafficking ring and more. Upon her arrival, Tess and Alex immediately aren’t seeing eye-to-eye and disagree on how to handle Lainie. She’s a victim in a weeks-long kidnapping and human trafficking case; Alex thinks it may have been a sex ring conspiracy and that they need to act fast. Tess, on the other hand, believes it goes deeper than that and that they need to earn her trust before bringing her to a trusted attorney. “She’s not a case, she’s a person,” she says. They’re fittingly left alone while Burton and Taka go “rattle cages” with Nicholas Hull of Hull/Bedford when the drugs wear off and Lainie finally wakes up. It’s learned she’s been unconscious for nearly six weeks’ time.
Tess and Alex earn Lainie’s trust
While she’s at first hesitant to tell them her story, Lainie eventually caves, finding comfort in the fact that Tess is a compassionate dreamer. “Maybe we’re special because of what we can do, but we’re still people. We’re not property to be bought and sold,” Tess assures. It’s clear from the start that Lainie holds some deep resentments toward Bill Boerg, and she believes he was trying to find her with Tess and Burton just to get her to dream for him again. Her disdain for him led to her leaving the dröm experiment and getting swept up by her captors. She recalls that upon leaving his offices, an unidentified man approached her and gave her $25,000 in cash and offered her $250,000 more if she traveled abroad to dream with “some sheikh or something.” She promptly sold and donated all her belongings, and right when it looked like she was packing up and moving away, she was abducted from a movie theater, drugged, and held asleep ever since. Hearing the story, Tess is taken aback and is forced to recollect her own memories of James—that’s when it becomes clear. In the heat of her epiphany she leaves Alex and Lainie in the apartment and soon returns with a pregnancy test. She thinks that Lainie was kidnapped and impregnated by the same people who kidnapped and impregnated her with James. “I don’t want this to be true, but we need to know,” she says. Tess is right; Lainie is pregnant. Incidentally, Lainie’s positive pregnancy is the first thing that brings Tess and Alex together; they both agree that while whoever wants to get their hands on Lainie’s baby won’t stop until they do, they won’t stop protecting her, either. “How about that?” Tess says. “We finally agree on something.”
Tom Dolan (A.K.A. the Shadowman) gets what he wants
We learn a bit more about Tom Dolan this episode, as well. For one, he has a daughter named Emily whom he rarely sees thanks to his estranged relationship with his ex-wife. In fact, when we first meet Emily, she’s having a nightmare being chased by the Shadowman through the woods, but Tom really just wants an excuse to see his daughter. The main way he envisions helping his daughter from afar is by getting her into her dream school: New York University. She applied and got in, but her scholarship didn’t come through, so community college is looking like her only option. That’s when he gets the wise idea to ask his employers (at this point still unnamed and faceless with that metal room and distorted voice) for help: Is there anything they can do to help persuade the NYU board of admissions to give his girl a scholarship? His employer agrees to do what they can—so long as Tom completes his latest assignment to their satisfaction. “Thank you,” he says. “I won’t let you down.” And indeed, he doesn’t.
Taka and Burton rattle Nicholas Hull a little too hard
And that brings us to Taka and Burton’s visit to Burton’s previous employer, Nicholas Hull of the Hull/Bedford firm. He’s now sitting pretty, out of the FBI’s reach, but he still manages to be shaken by Taka’s recording of Dr. Leon Ralston’s call with journalist Brent Jankowski. They’re both dead, and Burton and Taka have reason to think that Hull had something to do with it (even though it’s Taylor Bennett being named on the tape). When Hull suggests that Bennett should be Burton and Taka’s main suspect, Taka alludes to the fact that if he were to turn her in right then, he’d have a lesser sentence by helping them out; meanwhile, if they go after Taylor and she talks, it would be the end of his life as he knows it. Still, he doesn’t budge. He invites them to bring him down if they have what it takes to do it this time around. “Until then, I have a company to run.” Once they leave, though, he shows his first sign of fear by dialing Taylor to discuss his situation. She assures that they “obviously have no prosecutable evidence on you,” but she herself seems concerned that her name is being floated by strangers. Consider the cages rattled. The next morning, Taka is called down to a crime scene: Hull has jumped from his 54th-floor window to his death; Tom, per the instruction of his employer, is the one that made him do it. Is it safe to assume that Taylor is the one pulling all these strings? Taka was called to the scene, however, for another reason: Why was his name in Nicholas Hull’s guest book just hours before his suicide?
- Bill Boerg continues to be a man of secrets. Besides being an “asshole,” in the words of Lainie, it’s also revealed this episode that he was running dröm in part through Taylor Bennett’s funding. She comes by his headquarters and says that she’s interested in reinvesting, so long as he can prove the machine works. She also quizzes him on the last time he saw Lainie; he keeps a straight face, but she definitely seems to know something is up. When he calls Taka and Burton from a burner phone to explain the situation, however, they seem pretty nonplussed and advise he make a pot of coffee and keep a low profile. Bill says he’s just trying to protect Lainie, but Burton knows that “Bill’s always hiding something.”
- Taka and Alex get closer than ever before; after finding her sleeping in a holding cell for fear of what the Shadowman might make her do to her girlfriend, Christine, Taka insists Alex begin sleeping at his apartment. “We’re partners,” he says, “which means your problems are my problems, whether you like it or not.”
- Burton and Tess continue getting closer, too. At the episode’s end, Tess is pretty distraught about her past. Who was it that abducted her and impregnated her with a child? What happened in that year that’s totally blank in her memory? It’s clear that she can no longer run away from this thing, and Burton promises that he’ll be by her side for the ride.
- And that brings us to Woody, who uses his dreamer capabilities to hurt Whittaker in the polls. When Elizabeth refuses to drop out of the race, despite the lovechild Woody revealed at Whittaker and Taylor’s bidding, Woody eases his conscience by entering one of Whittaker dreams and, much like the Shadowman, forcing him to do something humiliating in public. While he thinks he’s having a sex dream with a bed full of adoring and gorgeous fans, he’s actually walking the streets of New York City in the nude. Droves of cellphones record every moment. We’ll have to wait and see how Woody’s not-so-subtle revenge effects the election—and Woody’s relationship with Taylor.