Part VIII
S3 episode 8 Aired on March 26, 2020

And just like that, The Sinner’s harrowing third season comes to its shocking conclusion. Part VII left with Jamie sneaking up on Captain Morris on the golf green and killing him with his own club. Suffice it to say, he was only just beginning… 

Jamie zeroes in on Harry’s loved ones.

In a devastating twist, it comes to light in the opening minutes of this season’s finale that Morris was just the first step in Jamie’s twisted plan. An envelope is found at the scene of Morris’ murder, and it’s addressed to Harry. Inside is a whirlybird—a paper fortune teller—and it offers four answers of “fate” that will lead Jamie from one step to the next: Morris, Sonya, Melanie, and Eli. As revenge for Harry’s betrayal, Jamie is following the whirlybird to murder the four people that matter most to the detective.

Frustratingly, Vic and the rest of the precinct don’t have any leads on Jamie’s whereabouts other than the last time his phone was on, he was in Clinton Hill—and that’s when Harry begins to panic. On the phone with Melanie to warn her to not go to her apartment before police arrive to patrol the premises, Harry learns that Eli hasn’t been seen or heard from since leaving his martial arts class in, you guessed it, Brooklyn’s Clinton Hill neighborhood. While sending the squad out, Harry also calls Sonya to warn her of what’s going on. Despite the way they left things last episode, it’s clear that he still cares about her. “He’s targeting people that he knows are important to me,” he tells her. So, Sonya agrees and says that she’ll leave the house, but after she packs her bags, she decides to stay and wait for Jamie (more on that soon). Harry, meanwhile, gets to Melanie’s, and while he remains tight-lipped on the details of the case, he promises her that he’s going to do everything he can to protect them, and that no one is going to get hurt.

Back in her house, Sonya waits for Jamie’s inevitable arrival. Hearing a bump on the front porch, she walks out to investigate but doesn’t see anything. When she returns, Jamie is there waiting for her. “You left the back door open. Harry must’ve warned you,” he says, and she admits that he did. “But you decided to stay anyway.” He approaches her, and she shrinks against the wall nervously. He asks her how the portrait is coming, and she says that she’s been having trouble with it and doubting her work: “Everything feels trivial and fake. You’ve led me into a crisis.”

In his usual way, he has just the burn-it-to-the-ground response you’d expect: “Maybe that’s a good thing. Maybe you’re on the brink of something new.” That’s when he tells her that despite that, he’s come here to kill her. Sitting with him at her dining room table, Sonya says that she doesn’t believe that he wants to go through with it and tries to empathize with the struggle within them both, but he goes cold. “I’ve killed three people. And every time I keep waiting for someone, something, some voice, God maybe, to come in and stop me. But nothing ever does,” he says. “And I realize that expectation is just my conscience. There’s no one actually watching. There’s no meaning. There’s just the before and the after. It all just is. And once you realize that, everything becomes so clear. It’s like staring straight into eternity.”

Sonya tries to convince him to turn his back on that lonely, hard way of living and insists that he can choose to return to the world, but it’s to no avail. He stands and turns his back on her. He says that she should have left, after all. He draws a knife and springs. She stands and backs to the corner of the room, warning that she tipped the police off and they’re on their way. “Well now we’re finally being honest,” he says. He chases her to the next room and she trips; he pins her to the ground and is about to draw the knife when the police bust through the door. He flees out back while she’s left gasping on the floor.

Safe back at the precinct, Harry asks Sonya the obvious question: Why didn’t she leave? “I knew it was dangerous, but I just couldn’t stop myself,” she says. She thought that maybe she could reach him. “It was like a test, I wanted it. I wanted to survive it.” All she asks Harry is that at the end of the case, he sends Vic or someone else to finish the job with Jamie; he’s too close to it. “He’s rattling around in your head, and you’ll make a mistake. He’s a drowning man, he’ll pull you under.” Harry concedes and says he’ll send someone else. But of course, the promise doesn’t hold: While Vic is giving a press conference covering the murderer on the loose, Harry gets a call from his grandson’s cellphone: “You’re getting low on milk, Harry, you might wanna pick some up.” So Jamie is at Harry’s house with Eli, and he tells the detective that if he wants to see his grandson again, he’ll come alone. Harry grabs his things and leaves.

Jamie and Harry have their final faceoff.

In a moment that we knew was coming all season, Harry and Jamie have the climactic confrontation that will only see one of them coming out alive. Getting to his house, Harry draws his gun and makes his way up to the property, but Jamie outsmarts him and comes up behind him, beating the gun out of his hand and forcing him inside, where Eli waits for them both. Jamie demands that Harry take a large pair of headphones and put them on Eli’s head while he sits in a chair facing the wall. Then, forcing Harry to sit on the stairs, he demands the detective play his whirlybird game. Of the four possible answers, three of them allow Eli to live. The fourth has Eli dying by Jamie’s hand; he orders Harry to play, or else he’ll shoot Eli without the whirlybird’s directive. “I want you to play the game. I want you to look death right in the face. Right where I am. No escape route,” Jamie says. Harry tries to talk him down, saying that Eli is just an innocent 10-year-old, but Jamie is a live wire and doesn’t back down. Harry, knowing that he wouldn’t do such a thing to his own son Kai, decides to take the risk of goading Jamie to pull the trigger. He practically dares Jamie to kill Eli and then kill Harry—and then he’ll be alone. “No one will ever understand you, ever!” And that’s what gets Jamie to break his cool and concentration. He drops the gun from Eli and turns to Harry, and Harry takes that opportunity to lurch forward, taking a bullet to the shoulder (but better his shoulder than Eli’s head).

Listening to his grandfather’s order, Eli runs out the door and down the driveway to a neighbors’ safety; Harry is close behind, limping into the nearby woods. Jamie, who was knocked to the ground in his spat with Harry, dusts himself off, finds the gun, and makes his way into the woods, too. He follows Harry, limping and weak, tormenting him by firing shots in the air. “Eventually it all catches up with you, Harry,” he says. Then when he’s in close enough range, Jamie picks up a giant stick and hits Harry to the ground. Hitting him again, he gets on top of Harry to choke him, but Harry fists a nearby rock and bashes Jamie over the head. With him knocked unconscious and bleeding, Harry moves as fast as he can back to the house and grabs a spare gun from his safe. He turns to find Jamie already in the living room, pointing his gun back at Harry while Harry points his at him.

But to his surprise, Jamie puts the gun on the counter, raising his hands in surrender. Much like Harry goaded him to shoot Eli, Jamie begins goading him back: “Go ahead, call for backup. Then they’ll arrest me and I’ll go to jail, but I don’t think you’ll be satisfied either, will you?” He goes on speaking philosophically, posing that Nick was his fate, and now he’s Harry’s. “It’s like the only reason I’m here anymore is for you, to force you to admit it: That we’re the same. We are Harry. Take it from me, you can’t outrun this.” As if to prove him wrong, that’s when Harry shoots Jamie, at the time defenseless, right in the stomach.

Jamie falls to the floor and it’s immediately looking fatal; there’s blood everywhere. Harry calls Vic and alerts them of their location, but because they’re in the middle of the woods, it’ll be 15 minutes before an ambulance arrives. It soon becomes clear to them both that Jamie won’t be alive in 15 minutes; the tables have turned from Jamie watching Nick die to Harry watching Jamie. Kneeling beside Jamie, who’s mid-panic and bleeding out, Harry doesn’t tell him that they’re the same, but he does tell him that he doesn’t hate him. Jamie begins crying out that he doesn’t want to die. “We all have to, everyone does, sooner or later. You’re not alone,” Harry says, stroking his head and comforting him. Jamie says that he’s not a bad person. Harry agrees: “I know, just keep looking at me, alright?” He takes his hand: “Everything’s gonna be OK.” And that’s when Jamie takes his last breath.

Vic eventually arrives with police and medics in tow, but it’s too late. Harry feels like he made a mistake, that he shouldn’t have shot Jamie. He says that he’s going to have to report himself to the FID. But Vic assures him to not worry about that; he says that it’s all over. Eli and Melanie are safe and are meeting him at the hospital. 

Jamie leaves a lasting impact, even in death.

We only see Leela at one point in this episode, but it’s a touching conclusion to the storm she’s weathered with Jamie and their newborn. Before kidnapping Eli and meeting Harry, Jamie makes a pit stop at his old home, sneaking into the backyard and waiting to see Leela through the glass door. Soon, he catches her eye, and they both walk to the glass, tears in their eyes. She knows there’s no coming back from what he’s done, and they touch palms through the glass as a sort of goodbye. When he leaves, it feels like it’s the last time they’re going to see each other.

We also get an update on Leela in the final scene of the season. Harry is bandaged and in a sling while Sonya cooks dinner for him. Sonya, it turns out, has been in touch with Leela, and she’s apparently doing well since Jamie’s death. The business is booming, and she’s even hired Sonya to help design a logo for the store. Then in the episode’s final moments, she admits to Harry that she keeps thinking about Jamie. Harry knowingly says that he understands what she means. Then, she dares to ask what he was like at the end; she wants to know what that night with him was like. “Scared,” is all Harry can get out before breaking down in sobs. They hold each other, and the screen goes to black.