The Alienist: Silvery Smile Recap

Synopsis: Use of the innovative new procedure of fingerprinting leads the team to discover crucial evidence is missing. Kriezler and Moore interview a witness to find out what happened to Moore at the brothel.

I was tweeting like mad last night. Did you? Just so you know…I had to really figure out how to explain why this was such a great episode. Ultimately, we got a lot of insight into our three sleuths and about the killer. But, what I loved about this episode is the feeling that we officially have a case to work on. Not that the body of the young boy was not enough, but now we have a clue and a clue can lead us to so much more.

That clue is a fingerprint. The fingerprint they do have cannot give them a lot of information, but between it and the weapon of choice…they know it is someone who works with their hands. But, they need another print to solidify this theory. When they go back to the morgue to look at the boy’s body to see if there is another print, but the body was gone.

The next clue is a memory. Moore remembers what Sally said to him about the first victim. With that information, he and Kriezler go off to speak to Sally. What was interesting was the questions he asked Sally.

We also learn some more about what the main obstacle in their investigation is. That’s the police. They are corrupt because the wealthy have their hands in their pockets. When that is happening, they can make the police do whatever they want. But it is not only the upper echelon of society pulling their string, the rising tide of organized crime feeds their want of more money and what they consider a level of power over the dregs of society. We can go into History of New York City during the industrial revolution, but we do not have the time for that. What you need to know is that upper crust controlled the working class and they manipulated those that did not have the opportunities to move up in society.

So, it seems like the police think they know who has committed these crimes and it is the the son of a wealthy family. As a result of that knowledge, they are burying all the evidence as fast as it comes into the precinct.

So, when the call comes in that there was another body, whomever took it tells Teddy and he says not to say anything to the other cops for at least an hour. This gives our team enough time to do a little bit of an investigation.

We learn a lot from the victim:

  1. The killer likes heights
  2. He is no longer hiding his work
  3. There is not enough time to escape…so he is still on the premises and may like to hang around to see the cops run around like chickens with their heads cut off.
  4. He takes a trophy in the form of the drawings of Moore, when Moore accidentally leaves behind his work.

Before you know it, the press is at the crime scene and Teddy is trying to be as vague as possible. Hot on their heels, the police. With them in view, the sleuths are tipped off and leave the scene as quickly as possible.

But, what drives this show IS the three main characters. We learn a lot about them in this episode and that is partly due to their relationships outside of the group:

  1. Kriezler kind of collects people that have killed people. Mary torched her father. We learn this from Moore. His driver killed a man. We learn that from himself as Kriezler questions him about what it feels like to kill someone. He loves to figure out what drives the people around him and he does that to Sarah and Moore. However, he does not question his own motives. Does his physical deformity make him feel inferior in some way and feel sympathetic towards those who have emotional trauma? Or is it he feels everyone is deformed either emotionally or physically?
  2. Even though Sarah wants to be more than just a woman married to a successful man, she feels the pressure to comply to those societal norms and she has set her eyes on Kriezler as possible suitor.  She also has issues with the loss of her Mom at a young age and then her dying by his own hand. Yet, she understands his motives. What is really interesting is that she views herself like a child and that is intriguing.
  3. Kriezler psychoanalyzes Moore for why Moore goes to dens of ill repute in a way to get some semblance of initmacy that he is lacking in his life.  We also see his Grandmother berate him about finding love and giving more little Moores to look after. Then there is the fact that he was found in the alley and we know why…and trying to keep his good standing where it is.

Even though we are clearly putting our hope in these three broken characters, they are still driven to find out who the killer is…

…and they are slowly getting us closer to who it is.

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