What even is this show anymore? Endless stress and anxiety.
If the series gives a girl an aneurysm from cussing and fussing at the sheer absurdity, the puerility of its schemes and plot, then someone may sue on my behalf.
The plot thickens on In The Dark Season 4 Episode 3 as the domino effect of Murphy’s deal in prison leads to a bigger mess that has now stuck them back in the crosshairs of Gene, Josh, and Sarah. Oh goody!
The series has always taken approaches so outlandish that they stretched the limits of plausibility when it came to how much trouble befell Murphy and her friends.
The scenarios that have pushed them deeper into the thick of it have been the very definition of contrived. But it’s like they don’t even try to keep them within the realm of plausibility anymore, and it’s more irksome than endearing.
The situation with Paula is a prime example of this. Paula is a ruthless drug dealer who has apparently been flying under the radar since half of Chicago and Canada was focused on Murphy. You don’t get to be in that position without having an iota of sense.
Sure, Paula didn’t have much reason to trust Murphy; hell, maybe she could’ve given the blind woman terrorized in prison the benefit of the doubt.
Lesley: Why do you look so pale?
Felix: It’s just my face.
But Paula knew Murphy was in the freaking infirmary before she got released. It’s perfectly freaking reasonable that she either never got the audiobook or she could’ve gotten it and did n’t get a chance to exchange it before she left.
If she could call Murphy up at Lesley’s home, then they could’ve had a conversation and worked something out. Hell, maybe they could’ve simply arranged for Murphy to hand over the drugs with one of the men in the first place.
It was ridiculous that Murphy had to get Felix to return the audiobook to the library when a simple meetup could’ve done the trick.
It was undeniably ludicrous that the library didn’t have a drop-off box or that Felix went through the trouble of breaking in and even talking to the librarian but didn’t simply leave it there with him. Felix taking it with him in the bathroom literally made no sense.
And flushing the drugs was ridiculous because Josh isn’t a freaking cop, has no recourse, and couldn’t and shouldn’t have searched them anyway. Lesley’s a lawyer and she should know this.
The entire situation and how it spiraled out of control was so frustratingly, irrationally contrived that it wasn’t even engaging; it was just massively infuriating to witness.
And all of it was so that Gene and Sarah could go right back to redirecting their attention on Murphy as if she had ample time and reach to traffick drugs during the ten seconds she was in prison.
Worse yet, they’re right back to vindicating Josh when he was finally facing some semblance of getting reprimanded for his actions.
Lesley: Does it ever occur to you that being Murphy’s friend isn’t the healthiest one?
Felix: The Heart wants what the heart wants.
Josh is unhinged. Has there ever been a more insufferable character who has overstayed his welcome from him?
Josh doesn’t even have a personality or any other characterization beyond his obsession with Murphy. It makes zero sense that none of them have filed a complaint for a restraining order against him.
He’s surpassed stalking ages ago, and there is nothing remotely legal or constitutional about half the shit he does anymore. Josh showing up at Lesley’s home to confront Murphy after he learned she danced out was UNHINGED.
And it was Lesley’s house he ripped and tore through, not Murphy’s. I didn’t have a warrant. Don’t even get me started on him physically assaulting Felix at the library.
Josh is deranged. Gene should’ve taken his pass from him and kicked him to the curb ages ago.
It’ll be too soon if I never see this man frothing at the mouth and raging. But sadly, the season isn’t even near the halfway point, and then it’s unlikely that Josh will go play in traffic any time soon, so we’re stuck.
Best of luck to Theodore Bhat in his future roles, but I have a Pavlovian response to him on my screen now that’ll take me time to shake off, so I won’t be able to enjoy his work anytime soon.
Can the series play to reality a bit more and explore how Josh’s presence and actions alone have utterly destroyed the case against Murphy?
It’s frustrating that Lesley didn’t encourage Felix to file assault charges against him since the librarian could bear witness to it so that Josh could face some of the comeuppance and consequences HE deserves.
Max: I’m not leaving you.
Murphy: You already did, Max.
Their behavior is utterly disturbing, and they’ve seriously overestimated our tolerance level for this character.
We knew that the drug dealing case that Sarah and Gene worked on would dovetail with what’s happening with Murphy and that gang because of Paula.
In some ways, we needed that to happen soon; the timing couldn’t be better. It’s getting scary out there the more they look into things, and the bodies are dropping. It was shocking when they showed up at the home, and their lead got shot right in front of them.
But with the dangers of this new drug and this convoluted operation, you would think Gene and Sarah would recognize that this has always been so much bigger than Murphy’s capability. Based on her behavior when on the run, it’s evident that she is n’t heading this complex network.
Sadly, not only are they back onto Murphy, but much of their focus is on Felix, too. Felix is a disastrous fool when it comes to Murphy. His loyalty from him is remarkable, but it hasn’t painted him in the best light.
It’s frustrating how pathetic he comes across when it comes to her when they aren’t having their mutual bonding moments. I have spent most of the hour sick and doing some of the stupidest things to cover for Murphy.
And it put him right in the crosshairs and almost led to his demise. Witnessing Paula’s men killing a cop in front of him was traumatizing on top of his battling a stomach bug and a possible concussion.
Maybe that’s what we can blame for his decision to keep one of the tablets instead of flushing it. Nothing good can come from him possessing drugs, but whatever keeps the absurdity going, right?
But now we’re back in this position where Murphy has hurt the closest person to her, and they probably won’t want to be bothered anymore. Not only is this tiresome and redundant, but it’s frustrating.
Felix knows how much Lesley cares about Max; she loves him for some reason. And he also loves Murphy and probably thought there would be some turning point in their relationship.
But he saw Murphy’s inside-out shirt, and that said it all. It’s multiple layers to hurt there. It has to suck that he was kidnapped and nearly killed, yet Murphy handled the news by having sex with Max.
As a brother, it probably enrages him that Lesley came through to save all of them from death, and while she was pulling off a Hail Mary, Max and Murphy were having sex behind her back in her home.
Murphy: If Felix were here, he’d believe me.
Max: Because he’s your little bitch.
Murphy: You’re one the talk. I’m sure Lesley didn’t tell you to babysit me or anything.
Lesley isn’t necessarily the most likeable character, but she deserves so much better than all of this. She’s hosting her brother in her home. She’s dating one criminal, and Murphy is on house arrest at Lesley’s house.
Murphy brought more danger to their doorstep, and now she struck a deal with the devil and put her life on the line for all of them.
She did all of this, and Max cheated on her with Murphy the second she wasn’t looking.
It’s evident that the series always wanted a Max and Murphy endgame, but absolutely nothing about the two in the past season and a half could reasonably set them up for it.
The hour somehow thrusting these two together for the sake of more drama and discord wasn’t earned at all. They didn’t have any good buildup to justify the two sleeping together.
While Murphy wanting to do the selfless thing of sending Max away felt in line with her attempts to be a better person, Max returning because he cared too much to leave her didn’t ring true at all.
Not even ten minutes ago, Max didn’t give a damn about Murphy. He and Lesley behaved like two exasperated parents with unruly kids regarding how they responded to Murphy and Felix.
Max didn’t even give a damn about Murphy when she found out she got shivved in prison. Max will always harbor feelings for Murphy, and those wo n’t go away from her, but they have n’t shown him caring enough to hop into bed with her in a moment of fear and passion.
They used Pretzel’s chocolate poisoning scare (and they’re so wrong for that!!) and Max freaking out about the “I Love You” exchange and domesticity with Lesley to bring Max and Murphy together, and it didn’t feel earned at all .
It felt like an attempt to give ‘shippers what they wanted but look at the cost.
Murphy and Max look like pieces of crap for doing this to Lesley. The sex meeting resulted from infidelity and at the total expense of the Bells.
It was hard enough to root for these two to become a thing again before; this only worsened.
It wouldn’t be In the Dark if things didn’t get messy, though, right?
Over to you, In the Dark Fanatics. How do you feel about that hookup? How deep in trouble is Felix now that he has that tab? Are you sick of Josh? Hit the comments.
You can watch In The Dark online here via TV Fanatic.
Jasmine Blue is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.