Previously on The Returned/real life: an unarmed man (Simon) got shot by an overzealous police officer (Tommy). Also on The Returned (but probably not in real life), Lena found out that Adam, the dude she banged, is a serial killer, and Claire was basically the worst mom ever.
Five Years Ago
Claire is taking photographs on the beach, and she calls her model “sexy” so of course the model is…oh. Well, it’s Elton from Clueless (Peter)—so it looks like their affair started even before Camille died. Sexy is not exactly the first word I’d use to describe him, but okay, Claire. Oh god, he’s taking his shirt off. OH GOD, now his pants. He keeps his boxers on, thank goodness, and dives into the water. Peter is good for something, at least, because he convinces Claire to strip and join him.
First good thing you’ve done on this show, Elton.
Because this is a TV show, Claire is wearing matching underwear that look like a bikini. Also, the water is, omg, SO cold, so they splash-fight and then make out. Post lake-sex, Peter and Claire cuddle in some blankets on the beach and have an amazing looking picnic. Peter tells Claire she’s really talented, and wonders why she doesn’t take pictures for a living. (Just a guess, but it’s probably because her “photoshoots” consist of random beach photos of average looking white bros.) Claire explains that photography had been the plan, actually, but then she met Jack.
She wonders if there is a whole other version of her in some alternate timeline—snapping pics, doing exotic things, experimenting with girls, etc, etc. Peter tells her it’s never too late to change, which he should know because he was one time an accessory to murder, but now helps people by talking in a soothing voice, I think. Claire argues that she has kids, so she can’t really change too much. They make out some more.
Claire arrives home to find Jack and the girls watching Twilight (and Jack is Team Edward, thank you very much). She lies about where she was and the girls shush their dad for talking too much. It was probably Camille who shushed, SHE WOULD. Claire curls up on Jack’s chest with empty eyes—from her affair or having to watch Twilight? The world may never know.
Camille is having the loudest midnight snack ever, just slurping it up because she has no regard for anyone else in the world. Lena strolls in, still wearing a serial killer’s dead mom’s dress and a hospital bracelet. The sisters cry and hug. Claire looks on, thinking to herself, “Boy, what a really great mother I am,” but we all really know she’s the worst.
Over at Rowan’s house, Simon’s dead (x2, I guess?) body is wheeled away as Tommy looks on, pleased by his handiwork. Inside, the other cop in town that isn’t Nikki or Tommy questions Rowan about what happened. She lies and says she never believed he was her dead fiancé, and, also, he had a knife to her throat. SMDH at you, Rowan.
At the police station, Nikki is up late doing cop stuff like drinking coffee and studying mugshots on a bulletin board. She also looks at a framed photo of herself and that girl she was banging in a previous episode. I kind of assumed that was more of a hook up and less of a framed-picture-on-your-desk kind of situation. Awkward. She puts the photo in a drawer as another cop brings her the file she asked about. It’s Victor and his mother’s murder file.
Nikki heads over to Julie’s place to show her photos of dead Vicry (that’s Victor/Henry in case you forgot my amazing portmanteau) from almost 30 years ago. Julie’s like, “Yeah, whatever, so he’s dead? We take care of each other.” Nikki’s like, “First of all, you’re being awfully nonchalant about this whole situation. Second of all, this is not the first time he’s latched on to woman—and the first one died in the bus crash that Victor actually probs caused.”
“Girl, I love you, but you cannot keep this stray.”