Stanley’s been reprimanding Angela over her new store policies, but the Captain wants him to play nice. Doesn’t he know that’s almost impossible?
While Maura is trying to get Jane to join her for a run, Angela’s slipping Rondo some free food. Stanley’s not happy!
Jump with me to read more.
At the crime scene, they run into Artie McMurphy, a transit cop. The victim’s wrists were bound. She’s dressed in 20-year-old ill-fitting clothes and has a striking ponytail with a large scrunchie atop her head. Finding out her identity is quite easy, as a nearby suitcase contains her phone, driver’s license, and apparently her original clothing. Her name is Victoria.
Korsak has found a new friend – an adorable dog he’s named Barney Miller.
In autopsy, Maura finds that Victoria’s head is too damaged to determine the weapon used to kill her. She does know that the victim had sex within the last 36 hours, and the makeup was applied postmortem.
Herbert Buckley, a known doll-fetishist, is their first suspect. Frost and Frankie head over to his apartment to find him yelling at his old lady, Marlene. Frost and Frankie take both Marlene, a doll, and her owner into custody.
Korsak asks Maura to check up on Barney Miller, and unfortunately for Korsak, Barney is a service animal and must be returned. Maura takes him to his owner, Casey, and she immediately notices his condition. He begs her not to tell Jane, so Maura tells the next best person: Angela.
After being left without a break in the case, Frost is finally able to unlock Victoria’s phone and finds a dozen dirty messages from self-proclaimed family man, Ron Montgomery. At first, he adamantly denies any affair but folds quickly. They only rendezvoused over their lunch hour. How nice. He’ll admit to the affair but says he had nothing to do with her death. Their interview is cut short as another doll is found at the bus stop. Diane Campbell is dressed almost identically to Victoria with the signature high ponytail and large scrunchie on her head.
Frost suggests that Angela start a blog to direct traffic to her online ordering system.
The detectives are scrambling to find the link between their victims, as nothing in their past, except their bus route card, connects them.
As they check the security cameras, Victoria is seen arguing with Roy. He failed to mentioned this little spat. Now he’s prepared to explain – she found out he’s married, they fought, she got in his car, but then jumped out. He says he spent the night at a local bar.
The bartender confirms Ron’s story and so does the camera that shows Victoria getting on a bus in the middle of the night.
Rondo has a new assignment – he’s one of Angela’s Guardians, protecting the young woman of the city. Oh boy.
Maura’s caught a break in the case in a sliver of wood embedded in Diane’s brain. There are different blood types on it, the first two belonging to the victims and the other, 20 years old.
The sliver is made of white ash. Nightsticks were the only weapons made of white ash, and the only cops that used them would have already retired. So the detectives look into retired policemen with a history of domestic violence.
During their search, the Captain catches Rondo and his self-proclaimed homies on the news; the guardians are assisting the police. How sweet of them! Frost is kicking himself over his suggestions and is instructed to take down Angela’s blog.
After sifting through incident reports, the detectives find a news clipping about Libby McMurphy; she disappeared from her doll store in 1992. Her husband, Artie McMurphy, was on the force then and is now a transit cop. They had a son who has spent the last eight years in a mental hospital.
Before talking to Artie, Jane and Korsak speak with Libby’s mom,who had always suspected that Artie had something to do with her daughter’s disappearance. She kept Libby’s love letters all these years, hoping the detectives could use it for DNA.
They finally bring Artie in for questioning, but he’s all too familiar with the system, knows they have nothing to definitively tie him to the murders, and walks out. They’ve got a warrant to search his house (how?!) but find nothing.
Just as they find out that Libby shared the same brand of lipstick found on the two victims, another woman has disappeared. If the murders are a rehashing of Libby’s murder, Jane surmises that the killer would repeat them at the original scene of the crime. In Libby’s case, that would be at the closed doll store. Upon arriving, they find Artie, gun drawn on his son, who has the woman trapped against the nightstick. Artie wastes no time in shooting his son, and Jane rushes to his side looking for answers. He only speaks about his mother before he passes. Once it’s over, Jane notices the small doll house; it resembles McMurphy’s home. The dolls are seated, facing the fireplace.
Jane and the detectives head back to McMurphy’s home and continue their search, this time taking an ax to the fireplace, where they find Mrs. McMurphy’s body.
Jane meets a surprisingly cheerful Casey at the Dirty Robber. She suggests they start over, to which Casey agrees…until she mentions rollerblading. He thinks that the note he was left was from Jane, saying she knew about his condition, when in fact, it was Angela’s doing. Jane convinces him that they can start again. Casey is willing, but only if she doesn’t watch him walk out of the bar.
The highlights of this episode were, as usual, Casey and the always adorable Rondo. I love that he’s bonded with Angela!
The murder-of-the-week was interesting but felt a bit rushed toward the end.
We can add “Shut the front door” to my favorite Maura quotes. That’s almost as good as “What’s the big whoop?”
See the new episode, “Throwing Down the Gauntlet,” this week on Tuesday, July 3, at 9/8c on TNT.